Thursday, October 30, 2008

Wiggle, Wiggle

I had a doctor appointment this morning, and took Anja with me. She was AWESOME. Totally smiley at everyone and through the whole appointment (which was slightly prolonged because he couldn't find the hearbeat, and even though the baby was clearly still alive and well by the way my belly was flopping around, he brought in the ultrasound machine to get a heartrate anyway) she just sat on the floor looking at her animal book and playing with my wallet. She's so good! I guess it's no wonder she's such a crappy sleeper... if she were perfect at night she'd be too good to be true!

Speaking of her sleep though, we are making progress. Not so much in STAYING asleep, but in GOING to sleep, she is making improvements. For the past two nights I've been able to put her down by walking her around the dining room, singing. This is amazing. We haven't been able to successfully walk her to sleep since she was probably three months old. She used to only nurse to sleep or be driven, and once she was weaned she's just changed her constant eating habits to a bottle. I'm reeeaaallllyyy hoping this lasts, because it is SO much cozier to walk and snuggle a baby to sleep than to drive or feed her to sleep with a bottle. And I LOVE it when kids fall asleep on your shoulder, and you can tell the moment they do because suddenly the just go limp and heavy on you. It's so adorable! And we have a giant mirror in our dining room so I can see her cute little sleeping face, and her fat cheeks all squished up against my shoulder. I love it! She's so cute!

I can't believe tomorrow is Halloween. It feels like it should be later in the year than it is... October has gone by surprisingly slowly for me. I feel like I should be gearing up for Thanksgiving and Christmas, but really I need to wash our bear costumes and find some buckets or pillow cases to collect our Halloween loot. I think we're going to skip the traditional walking around the neighborhood and just go to all our friends and family who'd like to see Anja. Since she doesn't care how much candy she gets, it'd be more fun to be able to see more people we know.

This weekend will be pretty laid back except for some major housework needing to be done before next weekend, which is Anja's birthday party. The back room will definitely not be in order by then, so maybe we can figure out a way to close it off and let the rest of our house be open. I really need to do a deep clean of the kitchen before then too....

Okay, instead of rambling on about all this garbage on my blog, I think I'll hang it up and get to work!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Funny Duck

Anja's favorite thing to do is stick out her tongue. Although, she does have some other tricks, among them a funny little fake cough that she does whenever someone around her (including the dog) coughs, sneezes, or makes some other kind of noise with their mouth that might resemble one of the two. Also, she does it randomly sometimes just to make me laugh.

Okay, I'm totally ready to have another baby. It seems like EVERYBODY is having babies these days. Plus, I'm ready for Anja to have a playmate. Last night she and I went up to my parents' house for dinner and the Antonios were there. She had SO MUCH FUN playing with them. At one point I had an errand to run, and she was having so much fun with Grace that I left her there and when I got back, she didn't even notice me. And then she only woke up three times in the night!! She must've been beat after all that fun with her cousins. But another good thing about her having a playmate here is that I'll be able to get stuff done. I often think about how appealing the idea of downsizing is. I love our house, but a part of me really adores the idea of purging half our stuff, and moving into a small apartment. A house can be overwhelming by way of housework, but on top of that, I have to take Anja with me wherever I go. I can't leave her alone because I can't always hear her if I'm in another room. Sometimes I dream of living in a apartment where everything is visible from the main room, except the bedrooms and bathrooms, which obviously have doors.

I've been cleaning out Anja's room and it's looking great. Did I ever mention that I lint-rolled the carpet? After vacuuming it a number of times and it STILL being covered in dog hair, I took the lint-roller to it and it took awhile, but it worked! Now her room is not only usable, but also very enjoyable. It's the warmest room in the house, and I've started keeping the door shut in order to keep the dog permanently out. Anja has a basket of toys in there and there is nothing in there that is "off limits" to her, so she can go to town and with the door shut, she can't escape! I feel like I've posted all this before...

Yesterday Martino was able to spend some time at home in the afternoon! It was pretty great. He was going from his conference in Indy up to Fort Wayne for school visits, and in the time he was at home we were able to have a giftcard starbucks date (I know it seems like we have a ton of starbucks giftcards. This is true. People keep giving them to us, even though we don't even like starbucks and I don't know why anyone thinks we do! But who complains about free money, right?) hang out a little bit, and take a family nap late in the afternoon. It was awesome. When we all woke up, he packed up quickly and hit the road, and that's when Anja and I headed up the hill for dinner.

Tonight is the last night of the travel season! Martin will be home tomorrow evening and then it's over! Hooray! This season went by a lot faster than last year, for a number of reasons, and I'm really glad it did. And glad it's over!

Here's Anja all ready for the winter! The hat in the top picture is the one I made and the one in the bottom is the one I got from GlobalFest. Her little red sweater is the same one she wore last winter, when she was so tiny. It looks smaller in the pictures than it does in real life... and she had a winter coat, but the red one makes a nice thick jacket for fall because it's lined with fleece. And it has those cute toggles!

Monday, October 27, 2008


Umm... I just ate a five-egg Italian Omlette made with green peppers, onions, tomatoes, basil, oregano and shredded parmesan cheese. I called it an omlette because that's what it was supposed to be, even though I kind of overdid it on the veggies and underdid it on the eggs, so it turned out to be kind of a heap of scrambled egg and vegetables. Still though, it was delicious. And the only thing I've eaten today other than chocolate chip cookies....

Last night Martin and Anja and I took one of our Starbucks gift cards and had a very entertaining date. We went to the Levee one, which we find the most cozy (as cozy as a Starbucks can be) because there's that table tucked back by the window where you can sit and pretend you're not really in a Starbucks, and Anja can play on the floor to her heart's content and not be able to escape. However, when we drove by, we saw that there was a couple sitting at our favorite table--a couple who looked suspiciously like Elisabeth and John! We had it all planned out to go in and either kick them out of our spot, or join them. Sadly though, we went in and saw that it wasn't them, and in fact from the front, these people didn't look ANYTHING like them. Haha, oh well. So we sat at one of the other tables. While I was waiting for my hot chocolate up at the counter and Martin was hanging out with Anja back at our table, this couple came in. I didn't recognize these people, but they went right up to Martin and Anja and started talking to them with such excitement that I was sure Martin used to work with one of them. Ha! I was wrong! He had no idea who they were either, they just evidently REALLY LOVE BABIES. They sat by us and talked to Anja and played with her the whole time. They really got a kick out of her tongue trick. It was kind of bizarre, but really sweet.

Speaking of Anja. My daughter. The one I've fed and nourished and loved for the past almost-one-year. Remember how I labored all day and then finally let myself be cut open in order to allow her passage into this world? Well. She now says both "quack quack" AND "kitty." Does she say "Mama"? Not even close. She doesn't even attempt! When I ask her to say "Mama" she laughs at me!!! SHE SAYS "KITTY" BEFORE SHE SAYS "MAMA"!!!!! What kind of ungrateful daughter is she?!?!

Haha, just kidding. I mean, I'm not kidding--she really does say Kitty (although it sounds more like a really pflegmy "kiki") and doesn't say Mama. Or Dada. She just goes around quacking and sticking out her tongue, and chasing down the cat and saying "kiki" very happily when she catches him. But I am kidding about being upset about it. I don't really care... in fact I think it's really cute. And I like it that Theodore puts up with her so patiently.

This morning Anja and I took a little trip to Vienna for a free Double Vanilla Chai with a full punch card I've been saving. I decided to treat myself since it's such a cozy, cold day. A Shabby Green Sweater day, in fact! I put it on for the weather and didn't remember that people might actually come by for Rosary Group. When I got home from Vienna, Maryanne and her kidders were walking up my porch steps! They came in for awhile and we visited. We didn't say a rosary (oops) but we did have a nice time chatting, and her kids are great and Anja was surprisingly quiet, yet playful with the big kids. Her first two kids are the same age difference as Anja and our new dinosaur will be.

Martin is in Indy today and tomorrow for a conference sort of thing with some other work people. He'll be stopping by home tomorrow night before heading up to the Fort Wayne area for his last school visits of the travel season! Hooray!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

All Sorts of Parties!

Whew! What a weekend it's been. Last night we attended my sister-in-law's first annual Halloween Party on the River. It was really fun! Unfortunately, it turned into one of those bad dreams where you think it's a costume party so you dress accordingly, but you get there and it's really not. Actually, we were specifically TOLD it was a costume party, and we were the only ones COOL enough to dress up (except for the other 4 small children in attendance) and it wasn't very embarrassing at all. We did all end up taking off our costumes though; mine and Martin's were kind of too small and Anja got potatoes all over the front of hers. Here is what we were: Can you tell we're Goldilocks and the Three Bears? I think Martin made about the ugliest Goldilocks in history, but it was fun.

Then today was my Uncle Johnny's annual Fall Party up at his farm in Warren County. It's been loads of fun every year, but this year was the first time Martin's been able to go for the whole thing. Last year we went, but could only stay about an hour because he was going to Wisconsin that night. So this year was a really good time. Anja took a good long nap on the way up and stayed fairly happy for most of the time. We carved pumpkins, went on a little walk through his fields, ate a lot of good food and hung out with family. A good day!

I'll post more details and pictures tomorrow. For now, Martin said we can have a little family date (with a Starbucks gift card!) before he leaves for Indy. This is the last week of the travel season! Hoorah!

Saturday, October 25, 2008


I'm totally loving this weekend so far and we haven't even done anything. Anja decided to wake up at 6:00 (ugh) so Martin got up with her for a half hour, then we switched for another half hour so he could get a little nap. She's been having rough nights lately, and I'm always amazed that she can wake up feeling so happy and energized when I KNOW she didn't sleep well the night before, because I was awake with her the whole night, and I feel like the walking dead!!!! Oh well, I guess I shouldn't complain about having a happy little girl.

The plan was to walk down to the Farmers Market to get a pumpkin, but we only got down the block before Anja made it perfectly known that she was not digging the walk. So we decided it would be a convenient time to do the small bit of grocery shopping we needed to do and we'd just pick up a pumpkin at the store. On the way to the store we saw an intriguing sight that advertised a "LARGE-INTERESTING GARAGE SALE." And more than being an interesting garage sale was the fact that we recognized the address as Mrs. Presti's house! We couldn't pass it up. It must've been a multi-family sale because they had little girl clothes there and she never had any little girls. Another thing they had, hanging from a clothes line by one ear was a really adorable teddy bear. I mean, the kind of teddy bear that is illustrated in all childrens books. The one every child should have. THE PERFECT TEDDY BEAR. I was secretly coveting it, but I didn't say anything because we hadn't brought any cash with us. (Quick fact: Mrs. Presti is the mother of our friend Joel, who is Martin's best friend, [although he was my friend before he was Martin's,] and the Best Man at our wedding. His mom is currently moving houses so she won't be our neighbor anymore, which is sad.) Another thing we wanted to do was buy something of Joel's and wrap it up and give it to him for Christmas. We thought that'd be funny. So on our way out, we mentioned that to his mom and she laughed, and then pointed to the teddy bear and said that had been his. !!! And then she GAVE it to us!! We are not giving it back to him for Christmas, obviously, because Anja immediately fell madly in love with it and now she not only has the perfect teddy bear, but it was also the bear that belonged to her wonderful Uncle Joel. How special!

Then we went to Target where Anja brought in her teddy bear and we got the few things we needed and a pumpkin and Anja made friends with everyone she saw. She is much more social than either of her parents. It's kind of strange.

Anja fell asleep on the way home and since then we've kind of been lazing around. I made a cranberry-apple-mandarin orange salad/relish sort of thing... it might be totally gross, but I'm taking it to the Schap party tonight anyway. I'm really excited for the party, although it starts in 4 hours and I still haven't put our costumes together. Umm.... whoops.

I'm glad we had the week without our furnace. It has really made me appreciate the little action of walking into the house from the cold and feeling the warmth of the house. Also, our bedroom is now the best place in the house. It is very cave like and cozy with it's low attic ceilings, mattresses on the floor piled with old quilts, and little space heater warming the place up. I love our room. I always love our room, but it's especially great in the winter.

When we dug the heater out to start using it again this year, I couldn't help noticing the little white spots it had all over the top. Then I remembered what they were. Last year, we had our room set up differently, with two dressers side by side and a chair right between them. The heater was right beside the chair, and that was where I nursed Anja at night when she was brand new. So all those white spots came from my overflowing milk supply that was completely uncontrollable for the first 5 months of Anja's life!! Hahaha! I'd forgotten how funny that always was. When I think back to last winter I get happy. It was a cozy winter, even though Anja spent all of her waking time screaming her head off. She was so tiny and had all those cozy fleece sleepers and her pretty little bassinette. *sigh* If I hadn't already caught it during the summer, I'd totally be catching the Baby Bug now! I hope that's not a sign that I'm going to have a thousand children all under the age of ten.... Yikes!

Friday, October 24, 2008

I Don't Recognize This Feeling...

Warmth! At long last!

The furnace man was supposed to come between 8:30-9:00 and didn't actually show up until closer to 11:00. That part was really annoying, but it ended up being okay. The problem was nothing major--a crack in the ignitor! Weird, huh? Martin wondered if maybe it happened during the earthquake last spring, and I hadn't thought of that, but it is something to wonder about. How else would an ignitor become cracked? So anyway, now the heat is back on and it's truly delightful. I'm embarrassed to say that our in-house temperature only topped 60 degrees once this week (yesterday) and in general it was hovering around 53 degrees. It was a little bit cozy though; I brought the little space heater down to the front room and Anja and I just kind of hung out there all week, keeping warm. I have never wished so hard for a wood stove or fireplace!

In other news, I made Jill's famous apple cinnamon scones this morning. Anja was in an awesome mood and my dad came over. We've actually had a very enjoyable day, except for the lack of punctuality in the appointment, but it doesn't matter now and Anja is sleeping and I have a feeling she's going to take a good long nap. Maybe I'll join her in a little bit.

My baby belly is slowly getting bigger than my buttocks. Finally! In fact, I think I might even start looking pregnant within the next few weeks.

Not much is new around here. I was supposed to play at the Klein Brot Haus this evening, but they are no longer having music on Fridays and might actually even be closed on Friday nights now. This is too bad because Martin and I were both really looking forward to going up there. Tomorrow we are having a Schap Family Halloween Party--I still haven't put together our costumes--and the day after that is my uncle's Fall Party at his farm. I'm looking forward to both! I'm going to make Laura's chocolate chip cookies and a cranberry fruit salad I found in Simply in Season. Unfortunately, the stores don't have their whole cranberries yet so I had to buy canned. Booo. This year I'm definitely going to stock up on cranberries so I can use them all year long. They freeze for up to a year! I'm just going to start stocking up every Thanksgiving. Until I lived on my own, I never realized that whole cranberries were something you could only get once a year. Funny, the things you learn as you get older.

I'm looking forward to this weekend. I think the festivities will be a nice change from the house cleaning we've been doing the past couple of weekends.

This morning I woke up around 5:00 to that horrible, horrible Street Sweeper that runs around town. It was cleaning the entire library parking lot!!! UGH!! It must not have bothered the others because I was the only one who woke up, but it was kind of worth it because Anja and Martin were asleep next to each other, lying in the exact same position. It was super adorable.

I'd better get going on those cookies while I still have so much naptime ahead of me...

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Baby Views

I think it's funny (or maybe just obnoxious) the way other people interpret things about Anja. One example is that the other day she was wearing a cute red corduroy jumper. It was not anything fancy, and in fact, I hadn't bothered to change her after lunch so she had soup spilled all down the front of her. But when we went through the checkout at Target, the clerk marvelled at how "dressed up" she was. How do other people dress their kids? Not at all? Seriously, she wasn't wearing anything special. It's not like she was wearing a poofy party dress and bows in her hair. It might've been something slightly special that she'd kept her shoes on for the whole car ride to the store, but overall, she just looked like a very typical baby girl in a very typical corduroy jumper.

Then today I was at the grocery store (again in the checkout line) and I don't know if I've mentioned this, but Anja REALLY likes to ride in a grocery cart. Well today she was in a super good mood so as we went through the store she was shouting. Very happily, just shouting, then she'd smile or something... but she was very clearly NOT upset. But in the checkout line, the clerk kept making a big deal about it saying things like "at least it's not a really high pitched scream" and then she gave her a sticker and said "that usually keeps kids occupied for a little while at least." Occupied? She didn't need anything to occupy or distract her. She was perfectly content to sit in the cart and yell. And yes, she was being kind of loud, but it's not like she was throwing a hissy fit, nor were there any more than about 10 people in the entire store since it was 9:30 in the morning. It was so weird! And THEN the dumb clerk made a big deal when Anja put the sticker in her mouth. Well, what did you expect her to do, lady?!

Then there's my favorite: When people think she's a boy. I can't believe how often I'll take her out in some over-the-top girlie outfit and people will come up and ask how old "he" is. I tell them, "She's actually a girl" and they always act surprised. Does she really look that manish? I mean, she doesn't have beard. She doesn't have huge biceps. Granted she is bald, but still... she's got freaking earrings! AND SHE ALWAYS WEARS PINK!!! Yesterday I went to the yarn store and I walked there with Anja in the Ergo carrier. For the day she was wearing a pink corduroy dress with embroidered flowers on it, pink, brown, and tan stripey tights, and these cute brown soft booties with embroidered flowers on them. Since it was chilly, I put her jacket on her: a pink-lined sweater knitted in pinks, whites, oranges, and greens. VERY girlie. Also, on her head I put her pinke and purple hat with the big pink pom-pom on top. So while I'm standing there at the bargain bin wearing her, the ladies knitting on the couch behind me say, "Did you make all the things that little guy's wearing?"


SHE'S ENTIRELY DRESSED IN PINK, PEOPLE!!!!!!!! And if she is by chance ever wearing blue jeans with her pink shirt, socks, shoes, etc., they almost always have ruffles or embroidered flowers, or at least pleats!! SOMETHING to make them girlie!!! WHAT MORE CAN I DO?!?! I HAVE A DAUGHTER! NOT A SON!!! YOU'RE ALL DRIVING ME CRAZY!!!!!!!


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Unexpected Surprises

Hooray! Martin just called to let me know he'll be coming home tonight instead of tomorrow night! Evidently scheduling school visits for tomorrow wasn't going well and his boss was supposed to come down and do the visits with him, so when he called his boss this morning and said the schools weren't being very receptive, he was told to just come on home tonight. I don't blame his boss--who wants to drive all the way down to Evansville for nothing? So I'll be happy to get Martin back tonight, AND my mom already was planning to make Minestrone Soup for dinner, so I'll just plan to go up there to eat and if Martin gets home in time for dinner her can join us, and if not, I'll still get a hot meal that I won't have to cook! Everybody wins! Except for my mom, I guess....

I made the face on Anja's rag doll yesterday and it looks only SLIGHTLY satanic. I didn't have black embroidery floss so I used a light brown. And her mouth is pink. Everything is a little lumpy because I really have no idea how to embroider correctly, so I just leave the knots out and try to squish them down a little bit. Haha... this doll is probably going to give her nightmares. I did take pictures, but I'm not sure if they're appropriate to post because I still haven't made the dress for her, so she's naked. She's a modest doll.

I'm really looking forward to Halloween, except for the part where I haven't made our costumes yet. Oops. We're going to be the three little pigs! I hope everything works out. (Translation: I hope I can get motivated to get off my lazy patooter and put together some decent costumes.)

I can't believe that Anja is going to be ONE in only a couple of weeks!!! This year has flown by. We are having a birthday party for her on November 9th (her birthday) which is a Sunday. It'll be at 4:00, a kind of pre-dinner cake and ice cream thing, and any of you can come. All you have to do is call me and let me know you're coming a little bit ahead of time so I'll know how much ice cream to get! I'm going to make her a duck cake. I was originally planning to make a dinosaur cake because Mrs. Watson sent me a video tutorial on making a dinosaur cake awhile back, and it really didn't look as hard as it sounds, and since she is our little dinosaur, it would be appropriate. But then she started quacking... and I just can't help myself. It has to be a duck cake!

Last night I ran the little space heater in our bedroom and it made the room so cozy. And it totally reminded me of last fall when Anja was so tiny and we kept the house soooooooooo warm because we were sure she was going to freeze and die. I really love late fall and winter when it gets so cold like this. We've got our wool blankets loads of quilts piled on our beds and today I'm wearing my super adorable stripey wool tights that I got for Christmas last year. I love them. They are sooooo soft and warm, and unlike a lot of thick knit tights, they are very comfortable and don't sag down!

Speaking of knit... I really need to decide what to make and get myself down to River Knits with my gift certificate. Tis the season to be knitting!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

I'm Turning Into a Hampster!

My mom invited Anja and me out to Petsmart with her this afternoon! Luckily, she called only about 15 minutes after Anja woke up from her nap, so it was perfect timing and Anja was in a great mood. We beat my mom there, so we spent some time looking at the kittens. I loved them. All of them. There weren't many dogs in the store, except for the few being groomed, but Anja likes to look at everything, so we enjoyed the fish and the birds, and the one little hampster that was awake. When we got home from our little outing, I looked in the mirror and was embarrassed that Martin would be coming home in a few hours and I looked like Superfrump. So I changed my clothes into a much cuter outfit, including my wonderful purple scarf from last winter, which had been put away paired with my wonderful brown coat, aka Christmas Present from Martin. Well, then I went someplace else, I don't remember where, and I kept thinking, "wow, I really took home the Petsmart smell with me. I smell like a hampster cage." Then I thought that I hadn't really noticed such an overwhelming smell when I'd been IN the store. Finally, I figured out (after an embarrassingly long time) that the smell was my scarf, which had been paired with the coat, which was hanging with a cedar chip hanger board inside it. Ha! I'm such a moron!

Earlier tonight I was talking on the phone with Martin who was on the road. While I was talking to him, I was eating some Chocolate Raspberry Truffle ice cream straight out of the container. Here's our conversation:
Annie: "I'm eating ice cream straight out of the container. It's no wonder I'm so fat."
Martin: "Yeah..."
[long pause.]
Martin: "Um... I didn't mean that. I was just paying close attention to the speed limit signs."

That was kind of amusing.

I really wish that Anja didn't need to be driven to sleep so often, because I really enjoy snuggling her to sleep at night. Tonight she and I cuddled in her bed, and she'd brought one of her rubber ducks to bed with her, and Theodore was in the room so he came and snuggled us too, and it was so wonderful and cozy. I hope that starts to happen more often. Maybe Anja won't like the car rides so much when it's cold outside. We can hope.

Today I called her a "funny duck" and she started quacking. It was SO CUTE.

Now I'm eating chicken and rice for dinner, then going to bed.

Meh. Blah. Hum.

I can't seem to shake the sleepies and even though there's loads of stuff to do around here (for instance, White Mountain and Colored Mountain, growing out of my bathroom floor) I feel like doing nothing. I'm tempted to go up and take a nap while Anja is sleeping but I know that as soon as I fell asleep, she'd wake up. It's hardly worth it.

We've got someone coming to look at our furnace on Friday. It's not working. It's blowing cold air and we replaced the filters and nothing happened. Sooo... that's one of those things everyone hopes is the least expensive of all the problems it could be. Luckily we have a relatively new, efficient furnace, so I doubt this will be an entire-replacement sort of thing. This is our main house furnace, by the way, not the horrible 1968 furnace that heats the Big Back Room. That one got red-tagged.

I've been working on a rag doll for Anja for Christmas. It's actually turning out really well. I'm very pleased for it being a patternless first attempt. I even got the hair to look good! Next up is clothing the poor naked thing, and then decided and attempting a face. Yikes! Maybe I should've done that part before the hair so I would have one side to practice on! I guess it could always be one of those weird faceless Amish dolls...

It's sad when you're growing out of your clothes not by your baby bump, but more by your newly sprouted back fat.

I hate laundry. It always seems so endless.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Weekend's End

I just sent Martin off toward Evansville with a good chunk of homemade pumpkin bread and... well, that's about it. He'll be popping back through town on Tuesday, so that'll break up the week nicely, and then this coming weekend should be loads of fun... followed by THE LAST WEEK OF THE TRAVEL SEASON!!!!!! Joy!Joy!Joy! This season went by so much faster than last year. Partly because it was a few weeks shorter, and partly because I'm not waiting on a baby to arrive. If you'll recall last fall, Martin had been home from St. Louis for only about 8 hours before my water broke. He's done with the super-far travel now, and next week he'll just be in Indy and up around the Northern parts of Indiana. Not so bad!

On Friday I think we ate Bounty Rice (Martin's fave) then took a nice walk over the bridge. Saturday night after a long day of work, during which I felt like I did absolutely nothing, we did the same. I also made beef vegetable soup on Saturday, which will probably be our most popular dinner of the winter this year. Anja loves everything in it, as do I, as does Martin, AND it has the added benefit of making the house smell delicious. So everybody wins. Plus, one big pot can last days and days. I should learn how to make minestrone soup.... yum...

I have recently cleaned up Anja's room, but it became a disaster area again today when we took the crib apart and moved it upstairs and set up the cute twin bed in it's place. Eventually every room will look great, but for now it looks like we're living in a whole house full of storage rooms. It's frustrating, but I know it'll improve soon. We did take a lot of stuff to Goodwill and have started a second box bound for the same place. I know it'll all get sorted out eventually.

This morning I woke up at 7:00 to see Martin fast asleep with his alarm clock in his hand. Needless to say, we didn't make it to the 7:30 mass today. We went to the 10:00 at St. Ann's where we sat in the choir loft, which I found VERY cozy and MUCH less distracting than sitting downstairs! I've never even been up there before today, but I really liked it. Anja slept through most of the mass, amazingly enough.

One thing that did turn up while overturning our house and de-junking were the two coupons for a free brunch at the Trails that we got when we were engaged! I'd misplaced them, I think before we even got married. But we'd found them, so we thought that'd be a nice thing to do together since our weekend had been kind of short and lame. It was really nice! Anja was super happy the whole time and it's so much easier to go to restaurants with her now that she can eat pretty much anything. Afterward we went out back and walked down one of the trails that runs along Burnetts Creek. That was really nice too, and it made a very enjoyable Sunday morning.

Anja was so happy when we got back to town that we took her to Petsmart. YAY! She looooves that place. We needed dog food and cat food and dish soap--so we also ran down to Kmart and got dish soap. When we came out, we had a quarter, so we put her on that electric horse ride! HAHAHA!! SHE LOVED IT!!! And I couldn't stop laughing. It was awesome.

Back at home we did a little more household work, then Martin took off a little more than an hour ago. Later than he'd wanted, but we did have a nice day together.

On Friday my mom and I went out to Quilter's Harvest where she treated me to a nice pile of fat quarters! Hooray!! They're gorgeous... and I really would like to make a quilt for the new baby. I also got a yard of mulin and two more fat quarters (very pretty light blue) to make a rag doll for Anja. I've actually got the doll almost finished, I just have to sew on one leg. Well, then I have to do the hair and face. It's the dress I'm more nervous about though. I've never been especially great at making clothes.

After the fun at the quilt store (Anja loved it too) we took a little country drive out to Warren County to look at some farms. Woooo! My uncle has a little bit of land out there that I totally covet, and we looked at another specific place, but just being out there was so much fun. Plus, it was fun to go out with my mom while Anja slept (the entire time.) We even listened to Bill Staines the whole time, which definitely sets the mood for some good country farmland viewing.

I wish Martin had more free time. He'd like to go hunting and I'd like him to shoot us some meat. I would love to make rabbit stew sometime. Sadly, there never seems to be any time for that.

Speaking of my mom, I just talked to her on the phone and she said if I came up there she'd feed me steak. Ha! Who could pass up a deal like that? It's about time for Anja Pie to wake up anyway.

Friday, October 17, 2008

The Frost Is On the Pumpkin

Many Moons ago I took a trip to my brother and sister-in-law's house and while I was there I used Anna's Rosemary-Mint conditioner on my hair. It was amazing stuff. Not only did it smell incredible, but it also left my hair the softest it's ever been. Last night when Martin got home from Wisconsin, he unpacked all the shampoos, soaps and lotions he'd brought home from the hotel for me, and I was ultra delighted to see that IT WAS THAT SHAMPOO AND CONDITIONER!!!! It's actually a different brand... The brand he brought home from the hotel is Aveda, but the brand Anna had was Amenta and I think that was all-natural. Nevertheless, they smell exactly the same. When I put the conditioner in my hair this morning I was taken back in time. It was wonderful!!!

Anja didn't sleep well last night and I think it's because she was cold. I didn't realize how cold it was going to get in the night. She would wake up fussing a lot and as soon as I snuggled her she'd fall right back asleep. Looking back, I should have invited her into my bed, but I didn't really even think of it until morning. I hadn't put very warm jammies on her and now I feel really bad about it, but I'll know better for tonight. She did have quilts, but she's not very good about keeping them on. She kind of slithers out from underneath them. Oh well--tonight she'll wear fleece jammies and will be much more comfortable.

For breakfast I thought Anja and I would have oatmeal together. WRONG! Boy. She hated it. Not so much the taste, but the stickiness of the stuff really freaked her out. It was hilarious! I think I might try Cream of Wheat because I don't think it's as sticky as oatmeal. Now I have two tubs of oatmeal (I bought the second one forgetting I already had the first) and no one to eat any of it. I guess I'll just have to make oatmeal cookies! She's taking a nice morning nap now so I made myself some toast, and my curly-headed husband was nice enough to make me a 4-cup pot of coffee this morning before he left for work so I got to enjoy that too! Yay!

I still have farm life heavily on my mind these days. It's the weather and the leaves that's doing it. Not that I haven't always wanted to live on a farm... but for some reason the desire is REEAALLLLY strong these days. Anja and I went for a nice drive this morning and I drove down North River Road, which is absolutely gorgeous at this time of year. There isn't much traffic at 9:30 in the morning so you can go slowly and look at all the houses hidden in the trees along the river. There was one I noticed for the first time this morning that I would definitely live in. it's a wood sided little house with a red door and a nice big porch and a barnish looking garage. It's got all this woodsy yard around it and is right on the river! Of course, I wouldn't really want to live right on North River Road... but still. It's a really great looking little spot.

After I posted yesterday about going to Quilters Harvest, my mom called me and said she'd been having the exact same craving!!!! So she and I are going out there today when she is done at drug--I mean, cardiac--rehab and Anja has woken up from her nap. I'm so excited!!! I don't even know if I'll get anything because there's nothing specific I want (or have time, if we're being honest) to make, but just being there will probably be enough to satisfy my craving. It's been too long! I really need to finish the quilt I've been working on for the past two years. I might give in and sew the pieces together by machine. I know, this is completely against my principle, but I'm afraid I just don't have the time anymore to piece a quilt by hand. Bummer, I know. But I'll still be able to quilt it by hand because that's as easy as knitting to put down and pick up as needed.

My awful dog is being incredibly good right now. The neighbor kids are out and she's just watching them in the window, not even asking to go out. It's lovely.

Mike Prangley had the most adorable kitten picture on his blog this morning!!!!!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Quickly, Quickly!

Just a quick post between naptime activities. Do any of you read the blogs and kind of wish that you had everyone else's life instead of your own? Not that I don't adore my life... but sometimes the blog posts are so nice that I wish I lived in the life of that blogger.

It's finally cooled off here! I love it. This morning I got a cup of coffee from McDonald's (I only know how to make a 12-cup pot at home) and poured it into my own mug once I got home. While I was enjoying it and watching Anja play, my mother-in-law called me and invited me out to breakfast. She's on Fall Break today and tomorrow, and because of her schedule the only break in the day she gets when she'd be able to see Anja is right during Anja's nap. So today worked out really well! We went to breakfast, then popped by Jo-Ann Fabrics just to poke around. I was coveting so much and just being there made me crave a trip to Quilter's Harvest. Then reading Clare's blog made me even MORE want to do some crafting, not to mention the fact that I'd cleaned out my magazine basket yesterday and found a bunch of Country Living magazines from last fall and have been looking through those coming up with all sorts of great fall crafts to do.

*sigh* Maybe someday I'll have lots of free time. Martin gets home on Thursdays though so I usually spend them cleaning the house all day--today I cleaned the whole bathroom and put up a new shower curtain!

Oh weird.. my mom's at the door.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Big Pumpkin Plans

Martin and I have been dreaming big lately. He's up in Wisconsin, driving through beautiful rural landscape while I'm here pricing wood stoves on Craigslist and wishing Karenin had room to run. Today he drove through a huge wind farm and he said it was amazing. He's also been passing a lot of really old barns--the kind with stone bases. He calls me about every ten minutes to tell me some great piece of farmland he's seen. And it makes me soooooooooo jealous.
So, I had a brilliant idea. After he told me that Wisconsin is a good place to grow cranberries, I said we ought to start a cranberry farm. (As if I have the slightest idea of what goes into having a cranberry farm...) That was yesterday. Oddly enough, today he read in the local paper up there that Ocean Spray is asking all the cranberry farms in Wisconsin to expand because of the "increased global demand for cranberries"!!! I thought this was our perfect opportunity, but then Martin told me that harvesting cranberries involves wading through bogs and a whole lot of hard work, and he suggested an alternative: pumpkins!

So now our plan is to buy a piece of relatively local land around here, build ourselves a log house (another thing we've been reeealllyyy wanting to do) and have a pumpkin/christmas tree farm. Wouldn't that be GREAT?!?! Pumpkins in the fall, trees in the winter, and the rest of the year a regular job of some sort and a lot of coziness in the country. Of course, we're locked into this house for at least another few years... but hey, maybe some long-lost relative will die and leave us a fortune. Ha. Ha.

Or maybe! Someone rich person who stumbles upon this blog will say, "Wow, I have all this money and no one to give it too. I'll give it to Martin and Annie so they can make their dreams come true, as long as they promise to give me free pumpkins and Christmas trees for the rest of my life." Well, Mr. Millionaire, it's a deal!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Long Lost Friends

Well, it's official. Anja is weaned. Earlier than I would have chosen, had I gotten the choice, but I'm sure she'll grow up to be a perfectly normal adult without having breastfed through her first birthday. It's not like I could've stopped it anyway--I kept offering, but she finally must've decided it wasn't worth the trouble for the few drops she got and she stopped accepting my invitations. I might not have had enough milk to keep her satisfied, but I must've had something because she's been weaned for about four days now and yesterday I was soooooooo sore. I'm all better today, and I am quickly realizing all of the benefits that come with not breastfeeding anymore. The first one dawned on me this morning: MY OLD BRAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I have a hanger full of really cute bras that have been hanging, neglected, in my closet for the past eleven months. I AM SO EXCITED TO HAVE THEM BACK. I don't even care that some of them are kind of a squeeze to get into... it's totally worth it. I'd just kept wearing my nursing bras for the last couple days because they were what was hanging on the bathroom door. But no more ugly, non-padded bras for me!!! This is a very exciting day.

Sadly, that really is the biggest news around here. Another reason it's good to be done nursing is because I'm not nearly as hungry anymore. I have never known hunger like what I experienced in the first months of this pregnancy while I was nursing Anja too. Oh my goodness. It was incredible! I might have exaggerated to say I was "eating constantly" sometimes in my life, but during that time, it was the honest to goodness truth. I'd have one meal after another. I couldn't get over my hunger! It was amazing! But I'm glad it's over. It's expensive to eat all the time.

Anja and I haven't gone on many walks lately since the weather got hot again, but today is feeling much cooler already. We did take a short walk around the Village today and popped into Von's, but it was nothing worthwhile. Maybe when she wakes up from her nap we'll take a walk around downtown and look at all the trees. It really is looking like Fall all of a sudden. I drove down Happy Hollow Hill on my way home and it was really great.

There are little spots in town that I really like. One of them is 5th Street. They have a lot of little brick row houses that are cute, and one really magnificant house on the corner of 5th and Cincinnati that I absolutely adore. It's a nice clean, quiet street and I really like it. I also like Salisbury Street and the neighborhoods around it. I don't think I'd ever really want to live on the West Side, but there are some super cute houses over there. And since it's all hippies and college students over there it seems so quiet and safe. I really like it.

Something must be on fire--there are a ton of emergency vehicle sirens outside. In fact, they woke up Anja!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Putting Off Chores

Blah. I got to go over to Mary Sheiko's house this morning and hang out with her and that was fun. Colette is so funny and cute. Anja enjoyed stealing all Colette's toys from her and then drooling on them.

But now I'm home and I have a headache and I'm tired but I can't afford to take a nap because I have so much housework to do. I often feel like when I clean the house I just make a bigger mess than I started with. I definitely feel that way after our de-junking spree this weekend. Not only did we not finish the task, but now our big room is full of empty boxes and trash bags and stuff that at least used to be pushed against the wall, even if it was junking up the room. Ugh. And I have ZERO motivation to move any of it right now.

Last night when I was messing around on the internet waiting to hear that Martin had made it safely to his poopy hotel in poopy Wisconsin, I got a couple of surprises. The first surprise was when a huge black spider came crawling down the back of the chair right beside me. YIKES! We've had a real run of these guys lately.. it's terrible. I HATE SPIDERS. I think snakes are interesting, but spiders should never have been invented. Especially the big ones. Every fall I forget about this little side-effect. Anyway, I squashed it and sat back down to continue my computering (this time I sat on the coffee table instead of the chair) and I got my second surprise as the box beside me began to move, and out popped Theodore!! Hahaha. I love my cat.

After Anja was born and my sister was still going to be pregnant for a long time more, I passed on the box-o-maternity clothes with all my new ones added in. Little did I know I'd never see them again!! *sniffle* Now I'm reduced to wearing togas because none of my regular clothes fit and I have no maternity clothes at all. *sigh* She says she can't find them. If it were a sock I would understand, but how does someone lose three boxes of oversized clothing?!

Hopefully this public ridicule will inspire her to do another search. Tee hee hee!!! :) :) :)

Okay. I might just give in and go join Anja for her nap. I guess the housework will still be needing done tomorrow.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Saturday, Faturday

I know I'm pregnant. I know I am, but I just can't get my mind around it yet, and so I just feel fat. I feel like my pants don't fit, not because there is a little beanie-schapini hiding beneath my waistline, but because I drink too many cherry cokes and eat too many desserts. And every time I put on my four-sizes-bigger-than-normal pants with my husband's belt (for decoration only--don't worry, my jeans have no problem staying up these days) I kind of want to cry. What I need to do every time I get dressed is follow it up immediately by going to the fridge and looking at the fun little 3D picture of Greta or Fran that is pinned up there. But I never remember to do that, of course, so in the end, I just feel fat.

Today has been a busy day! We spent the whole first half of it (more than half, really) decluttering our lives. We made a Goodwill box and a Trash bag, and we really did a good job. We found unused wedding presents, old pictures, and stacks of books that don't belong to us that have made it through two moves and still remained in boxes. I was forced to give up my sentimental attachments to stupid things (I mean really stupid things--like ballpoint pens) and toss a lot of stuff. It felt good! And now our house is on its way to being a lot more organized and clean.

We worked on that until Anja woke up from her nap, then we hit up confessions at St. Ann's, followed by going out to coffee with our friend Matt. This was an interesting time because while we were there that fun little family who used to own the Scoops ice cream shop around the corner from Vienna came in. We never went to that ice cream shop, but I've often admired the little family. The wife is VERY pretty and they have this little girl named Safia. Except now they have another baby who is a boy. Anyway, we hadn't seen them around in ages and ages so now Safia is two years old! She was very intersted in Anja and we were finally able to introduce ourselves to the couple. I didn't tell them that I was kind of obsessed with them the whole time I was pregnant and that Safia was one of the reasons I hoped Anja was a little girl. Haha, they might be a little freaked out to learn that. I mean, I'm not a stalker or anything--I just found them intriguing.

By the time we got done hanging out with Matt at Vienna it was 6:00 and I hadn't yet thawed the chicken I intended to cook for dinner, nor had I gotten the green beans on the stove early in the afternoon like I'd hoped to do. Anja was getting crabby for only having one nap, so we gave in and used Martin's giftcard for Logan's Roadhouse that he got for his birthday. It ended up being a pretty nice little date. Anja was happy to eat off our plates and I always do enjoy a good steak. When we got home and Anja was in bed, our friend Joel came over and we visited for a little while. Not too long... he had to drive back to Ohio the next day.

**** Okay, at this point, I'm on my third attempt at trying to get this post finished and published. I started it Saturday afternoon and now it's Sunday evening, and it's DEFINITELY not worth all the trouble I've gone to so far, so I think I'll just post it and be done!

Thursday, October 9, 2008


Martin got home around 4:00 today which was a nice treat! We had time to take a family walk and hang out with our friend Matt for awhile before dinner. Anja had taken a good, solid nap this afternoon (and I happily joined her!) so she was good to go for the evening, though she started acting a little sleepy toward 6:30. I was hoping to get dinner made so that Anja could eat with us, but things just didn't go quickly enough. I ended up taking a few potatoes out of the pot early and mashing them up for her. She wasn't too interested in them anyway. Then Martin drove her to sleep while I stayed home and my sister and her family came over to deliver my birthday present, which is a delicious blueberry cheesecake that I have not yet enjoyed... but believe me, I will!

So anyway, while I was peeling and chopping potatoes, I cut my thumb. Not a rare occurance by any means. I just held a towel on it and kept chopping, telling Martin that the process would be only slightly slowed by my injury. When I was finished chopping, however, I did ask him to put a bandaid on my thumb because I didn't want to get salt in it because that hurts. Okay, this cut was like a paper cut. NOT BAD. Martin put the bandaid over my cut, but misseed a good portion of it so it's still kind of showing. Then he insisted on wrapping my whole thumb with athletic tape. So now I look like I've had some sort of major hand operation when really I've got a very minor cut--which is still visible because it's poking out from underneath the bandaid! It's a good thing he didn't persue medical school. We'd be in real trouble.

My day was uneventful. It's good to have Martin home for the weekend but he'll be leaving early on Sunday to drive to Wisconsin, so that's a little bit poopy. No real plans for the weekend but next week I've got to start putting our Halloween costumes together! It's just around the corner!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Morning Outings

Anja slept incredibly well last night. She only woke up once! Twice if you count waking at 5:00... she eventually went back to sleep at 6:00. Anyway... I could tell that she had slept especially well because she woke up SOOO happy at 8:00 and didn't even act tired until after 11:00. What a difference! I took full advantage of her good mood and we headed out in the rain to do a little post-birthday shopping. We browsed the beads at Von's (I'm planning to get some beads and wire and make some earrings and a necklace for myself. If it turns out, that could make a good Christmas gift for a number of people, but I'm not getting my hopes up since I've never made jewelry before) and got a hot chocolate at Vienna. If I had been thinking clearly we could've walked over with the rain cover on the stroller, but the thought never even crossed my mind. I have gotten SO LAZY with having a car all week during travel season. Anyway, we did park kind of far from Von's so we got a nice rainy walk. Anja used to hate being in the rain (and snow) but she suddenly loves it. And she loves wind, too. It's so much fun. I have a cute green ring sling that my sister-in-law, AnnLaura, gave to me and it's perfect for chilly, damp outings because I can pull the excess fabric up over Anja's shoulders and she can be cozy and dry in her little pouch with just her head poking out. It's really cute and she seemed to really like it!

The first thing I saw when we got to Von's was a book called "When the White House was Ours" by Porter Schreve. I've posted about this before, I know, but I'm SO EXCITED that it's finally out. When we were engaged and I was in school, Martin and I went to a reading over at TAF and Porter Schreve (who may or may not have that C in his name, I'm not sure) did a reading from this book, which he was working on at the time. Martin and I both loved him. He had by far the best stuff there that night. So anyway, I've been waiting for TWO YEARS to read this book so I about wet my pants when I saw it on the shelf.

And I'm sorry to say that I didn't support Von's today by buying that book there. I had a 25% Off coupon for Borders, so I went down there instead. I feel kind of guilty about it, but at the same time, not really. I also kind of splurged and got Anja a book of animals. It's really cute and I realized that she doesn't have any simple animal books. She will love it, I'm sure.

So that's my morning news. I have sooooooo much housework to do today but I'm really feeling unmotivated. I was reading back over my 2007 journal yesterday of around the time Anja was born. Most of the entries were about how much of a whale I was, but then I suddenly started nesting and I was so productive! And reading about it made me remember it, and I really was productive!! I wish I could ration out my nesting instincts so instead of getting them all in March before the baby comes I could use a little each week. Maybe 20 minutes a week or something. That'd be nice.

It seems like so many people are having babies lately, it makes me excited for my own. Haha, I know, I have a loooooooooong wait.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

My Barfday!

Well, I had another lovely birthday. And now I'm 25! I felt no sort of emotion or regret yesterday, so maybe when I'm 30 I will. We'll just have to wait and see!

In the morning I was invited down to K.Dee's for a "special birthday special" from Kim and Jerry. On the House, I got a bagel with cream cheese on the side (the cup of cream cheese had a birthday candle in it and they even turned out the lights!) and a hot chocolate. A great way to start the day, especially since Anja was so happy also. Our birthday breakfast made us late for rosary group though, whoops! My day was pretty good. Anja napped well, I got some laundry done and Martin got home from his local-ish travels early in the afternoon!! Anja was SO excited to see him. I sometimes wonder how many irregularities she picks up on. I mean, she does have a pretty solid daily routine, and I wonder if yesterday she could sense that it was weird for her daddy to be coming home from work at 2:30 in the afternoon instead of at dinnertime. I wish I had a camera to her brain! Anyway, that was fun to have him home and we got to have a nice afternoon before going out to dinner together at Roberts Americus. Yum yum! We both got catfish and Anja had a baked potato (but she liked my cottage cheese best of all!) After dinner we went to Borders where Martino bought my birthday present. He knew what he was getting me but hadn't had a chance to go out and get it. Turns out, he had in mind a "Bad Kitties" calendar, filled with hilarious pictures of kittens eating things. I love it! Also he got me the Punch Brothers CD, which is the band of Chris Thile, who used to be the mandolin player for Nickel Creek before they broke up. Hooray! I can't wait to listen to it! I'm planning to make some banana bread this afternoon, so I'll put it on while I'm doing that.

From Borders we walked over to the Silver Dipper and met up with friends and family for a little ice cream birthday party. Very fun! And everyone brought me presents!! I totally wasn't expecting that. Most Thoughtful Gift goes to both my mom and Mrs. Schap for equally thoughtful gift certificates: one for Von's and one for River Knits. My two favorite places EVER!!!!!!!!! I am so excited. Also my mom got me a pair of gorgeous wooden knitting needles and Mrs. Schap got me a book of Robert Frost poems without knowing that Martin had given me the same book of Robert Frost poems a few years ago for Valentine's Day when we were dating. Whoops! She said she'd return it and gave me money to buy myself a book. This is good because I also have my Borders Rewards birthday coupon, so it looks like Anja will be making a trip over to Borders sometime this week!

So that was yesterday. Today Martin is around the Kokomo area and will be stopped by at home before going to Muncie for the next two nights. It's been good to have him home for these two nights! Next week he goes to Wisconsin, then to Evansville the week after that, and that's pretty much the end of the travel season. Yay!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

There's Been and Nuclear Spill...

...IN MY NOSE!!!!!!

I've heard that bright green snot means you've got a sinus infection but I've also heard that a sinus infection makes you feel absolutely horrible, and I feel pretty good except for the stuffed up nose, so I'm not going to assume I've got anything like that.

It's going to be kind of a weird/hectic/long-yet-short weekend for us. Today is a normal Saturday but tomorrow Martin goes to Evansville and I have a meeting at TAF in the afternoon. I am worried about what I'll do with Anja! I can't decide if I'm going to just take her with me or see if she'll stay with my mom... I HAVE to go to the meeting though because I skipped all of them last year. I'm such a bad committee member. Then Martin is not traveling far on Monday so he'll spend Sunday night at home and will only be in Clinton County on Monday. He'll be home in time to take me out to dinner for my barfday! We're going to go to Robert's Americus Catfish place. It's a special date spot for us--he took me there the Valentines Day when we were dating. So that should be fun and then we're meeting up with our families for ice cream afterward. Then he'll stay home on Monday night and on Tuesday he'll travel and stay in a hotel for that night and Wednesday. So it'll be kind of a weird week.

This morning we all three snuggled in bed for about an hour. It was adorable... Anja was snuggled down between us and she was wide awake so she just talked and talked, but she must've been so warm and cozy becuase she didn't try to get up for a long time. She woke up a lot last night, which was a bummer. However, at the beginning of the night she actually fell asleep by herself after drinking a bottle. She just turned over and fell asleep. It was so cute. And kind of a miracle.

After we eventually got up (after 8:00!) Anja got dressed in cute clothes while Martin and I looked so scrubby and we went over to Vienna for chai. Who should come in shortly after we sat down but our friend Matt! So that was kind of fun. Now Martin's walking the [horrible] dog and I'm not doing the dishes like I told myself I would. Ugh. Why am I so unmotivated? There aren't even very many.

Last night we went to dinner at the Arni's in Lebanon which is a very cute Arni's. Much less scummy than the ones around Lafayette. Anja had chicken & dumpling soup. I ate one piece of chicken and about three spoonfuls of broth and she ate the whole rest of the bowl. It was amazing. I think Pat and Joe were very impressed by her eating abilities.

Our dog keeps running away now. She used to get out the gate but since I put the log in front of it now she just jumps the fence. It's sooooooo annoying. She doesn't even go anywhere--she just walks across the alley to see the neighbor dog, but she won't come when I call her and when I go to her she runs away. Grrr.... So now we're back to escorting her into the yard and if she still keeps it up we'll be back to leash-bound potty trips.

Okay, this was a pretty worthless post. Time to do the dishes.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Lights Out / Mullet Be Gone

Evidently the downtown area was having a little power outage issue last night. After dinner our lights went off and then came right back on again. Then later in the night before we'd gone to bed the lights all went out and it was soooo dark. We found our flashlights and I went to bed while Martin finished his workout and the lights stayed out for maybe an hour. I still don't know what was going on but it seemed to be something around the hotel. Hm. I should check the JCOnline and see if it says anything.

Anja has gotten into the habit of taking three naps a day: A morning nap shortly after she wakes up, a good afternoon nap like a normal baby, and then another evening nap around 4:00 or 5:00. This means that she's staying up later and staying happier longer. This means that we're able to have a social life again! This means we can spend our evenings together as a family! I'm very happy with this new development and I really think it's helping her to sleep better at night too. Anyway, because of her new nap schedule, she didn't wake up last night until after Martin and I had finished dinner. So we loaded her in the stroller and took a walk over the bridge to Great Clips where I got my mullet chopped off. Hooray! My hair is very short still, but it's a much better style than what it was. And hopefully now it will grow out evenly and cutely. After the haircut we met our friend Matt out for coffee at Starbucks. I got their new Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate. It was delicious!! Really salty!! I loved it!! We like to meet Matt at the Levee Starbucks because it's a quick walk for us and during the school year Vienna gets so crowded with students. Also, we sat at the corner table by the window and Anja was happy to play on the floor and yell at the wall the whole time.

This morning I was going to head over to the license branch to get my license renewed but Anja was practicing her Large Prehistoric Animal noises and I didn't feel I could leave the house without people giving us weird looks. She was so happy, but you wouldn't have guessed it by the sounds she was making. It was pretty hilarious, but best to keep it inside. Maybe in the afternoon she will be a little more mellow and we can try again.

My chili turned out great last night, I was so pleased. And my neighbor Tara sent over the delicious cornbread side. Yum!

Tomorrow is the Penn State vs. Purdue game, which means that Joe and Pat Mooney are in town. We're going out to dinner with them tonight. I'm really looking forward to seeing them--they are such nice people.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Hello, Baby!

The ultrasound this morning was great! I think it was done to find out how far along I am because the doctor and I were unsure about it. (I said one thing, he said another.) Now I don't know who was closer to being right, but I'm thinking we were both wrong so it doesn't matter. Anyway, it was great. I had no idea that they do the 3D/4D ultrasounds at the Women's Clinic! They didn't have those at Arnett, and it was a total surprise this morning to get one. IT'S SO COOL!!! I'm only a little more than 15 weeks pregnant but we could see the little dumpling's face perfectly!! EVEN NOSTRILS!!!! My favorite part about ultrasounds is counting the fingers and toes. Somehow it makes me think everything will be fine as long as he's got all his fingers and toes. And he's got all his vital organs too, another somewhat important part.

She asked if I wanted to sneak a peek between the legs, but I told her we'd like to be surprised. With Anja I was much more tempted to find out, I think mostly because I so much wanted her to be a girl. But in the end I'm SO glad I didn't, because that was the best part about her being born. I mean, except for meeting her and all that obvious stuff. So this time I'm looking forward to the moment-of-birth surprise.

Have I mentioned the names we've chosen? If it's a boy we're going to do a cool twist on a few modern names: Shacayden. And if it's a girl we're taking a classic name and turning it modern by using an alternate spelling: Lynnduh. Kind of like the "j" in Anja's name!

Okay, that last paragraph was a joke. We're actually not going modern at all. For a boy there was a debate for awhile between the names John Francis (Anja's boy name) and Edward Martin (Martin's name reversed and a family tradition) but in the end I had no strong opinion so I left it entirely up to Martin and he finally chose to stick with John Francis. Fran! I love it. And a little girl we will call Greta Jane! Not the original name we had chosen for our second daughter but we both kind of fell head-over-heels when we found the name Greta in a baby name book.

I'm making chili today for the first time ever! I think it's a perfect day for it. Martin will be home at his usual time tonight and our neighbor Doug is on a business trip till Saturday so Tara and I are having a collaborative meal: I'm making the chili, she's making the corn bread. I might suggest a chilly picnic on her patio, but it'll depend on how chilly it actually is when dinnertime comes!

Karenin figured out how to open the back gate this afternoon so I had to put a giant log in front of it so she can't get it open anymore. Crazy dog!

I'm turning twenty-five on Monday, which means I have to get a new drivers license. I am completely bummed about this for a number of reasons. First of all, my current license picture is ADORABLE. Second, I remember so well the day we went to get our new licenses shortly after we were married. It was so exciting! And we were using our new house address and I signed my married name for the first time. And aside from those things, I'm horrified that my current haircut is going to be immortalized on my drivers license. YIKES! I'm going to get a trim before I get my license, no matter what, but still. I miss my long hair. I know they usually take your old license but I'm going to ask them if I can keep mine as a souvenier of my honeymoon. They probably won't let me, but it's worth a shot.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


Can I just say that I love fall? This year I have a whole new appreciation for it too, coming in the form of Anja's shoes. I LOVE putting shoes on Anja. I've heard you're not supposed to put shoes on your babies until after they're a year old--something about their feet not turning out right or something--but I figured the babies in the olden times always wore those high-top lace-ups and they all learned to walk eventually, so it must be okay for Anja to wear shoes now too. And she has some REALLY cute shoes. Oh heck, I love all of her fall clothes, from the toes up. I love planning out what she's going to wear the next day, right down to her socks (or tights, as is the case tomorrow!) In fact, I get so wrapped up in it, that most days I get out of the shower and realize I've forgotten to pick out anything for myself to wear!!!

Anja has been sleeping better at night. She's been waking pretty much three times a night. The downside is that every time she wakes she needs to be driven. I try nursing her back to sleep, which she likes, except it doesn't put her to sleep anymore. I try bottle-feeding her to sleep but in order to that I have to take her down to the kitchen, fix the bottle for her (which usually includes first washing a bottle) go back upstairs, and by that time she's pretty wide awake. So I reeeeaaalllly need to start putting a bottle in the fridge before I go to bed so it's ready and I can just leave her in bed, dash down for the bottle, return and feed her to sleep. Tonight I already have the bottle in the fridge so I will try it. I'm getting reeeaaalllyyyyy sick of driving around town three times a night. HOWEVER, it is definitely better than waking every thirty minutes or hour to nurse.

Tomorrow I have an ultrasound! I'm pretty excited. I don't really feel pregnant yet, just fat. However, today when I was doing dishes I noticed that I do have a distinct, unsquishable bump beneath all those layers of fat. I'm one of those perfectly sized pregnant ladies whose belly is right at counter level. Booo.

My mornings without Martin here are difficult. They are especially difficult when I let myself sleep in, as I did today. I HAVE to get up before Anja if I want to complete my morning routine in time for her to have her morning nap on time. When Martin is home I can be ready for the day in half an hour. Without him it takes about two hours. This morning Anja was extra clingy so it took longer than usual and when I finally tried to put her down for a nap she was too tired and upset. I tried everything, all she did was scream, so finally we went for a walk. She was happy to walk down to K Dee's, upset by the time we left. (All we did was stand in line, get a hot chocolate and leave.) I gave her some of my whipped cream, but when I stopped feeding it to her she got REALLY mad and screamed the whole way home. Now this is the point of my story: Why do people feel compelled to strike up a conversation with me when it is very clear that I'm on my way home with a screaming baby? Here I am, practically running down Main Street and the parking meter man decides this is a good time to talk. He's never talked to me before, but here he is telling me about his own kids' sleep schedules from however-long-ago. Dear Mister Meter Man: Not only do I not care about what you're telling me, but I'M IN A HURRY!! My baby is screaming her head off in the middle of Main Street! I do not want to talk to you! Sheesh. People are so crazy sometimes.

I have more to say but Martin is calling, so I guess I'll have to post the rest tomorrow!