Thursday, July 29, 2010


Just a swingin'..., originally uploaded by MrsBinParis.

It's been a hot summer. Where the usual weather for our town is pleasant and in the 70's for all but one week of summer, with plenty of rain to make the long mountain a lush, green-carpeted hill to the west, this year we've seen 90's nearly every week, and lots of humidity, though little rain. The grass is brown and patchy, prickling your feet when you run through it, and the new rain boots sit waiting for some action. Trips to the park are frequent, but short. The heat just gets to you, sending you home on the hunt for lemonade and a nap.

Rowan's reaching the point where her naps are getting in the way. Though many of her friends no longer take them, she still will go down for two or three hours in the afternoon. Where a few months ago she could still fall asleep at 8:30 and stay in bed for 12 hours, now she is having more and more trouble falling asleep at night. We're hearing about "Monsters" in her room, and even the elaborate ritual of curtain cracking, night light illuminating, "Jesus Loves Me" music box winding, "Monster Spray" spritzing, and prayer saying isn't cutting it. When her dad was out of town, it got even worse. Tuesday night, she finally succumbed to sleep at 11:45 PM, on a little bed she made for herself directly under the overhead light in the hallway. I woke her gently 15 minutes later, leading her into my room to sleep on her dad's side of our big bed, where no monsters could get her. "Thanks, Mommy," she said, falling asleep again as she bent to pick up her lovey or doudou, a security blanket known as "Cover Blanket". Face down, bum high in the air, she snored into the carpet until I lifted her under her arms and led her into the bedroom.

When he came home, her dad was able to help, laying down with her at 8:30, snuggled between the bears, Groovy Girls, babies, stuffed monster toys ("But they're nice monsters, Mommy!"), a red Chevy Impala and the porcelain music box she likes to sleep with on her pillow, close to her ear. We're glad we've got a double bed in her room, for nights like this.

As I type this, she's gone up for an afternoon snooze, sweaty and sticky with sunscreen. I'll wake her this time, after an hour or so. With a kiss.

Monday, July 19, 2010

What she doesn't like about Jesus

Conversation with Rowan as we walked the dog, Saturday evening.

"So, you're going to go to Bible school next week!"

"What will I do there?"

"Hear stories, do crafts, play games, sing songs..."

"What else?"

"Learn about Jesus! He's a pretty awesome guy, right?"

"Yeah," she says. "But I don't like his hair!"

Saturday, July 17, 2010

She is so much cooler than I ever will be

La Petite Girl Destroy, originally uploaded by MrsBinParis.

Who could resist putting a 3-year old in an AC/DC t-shirt? Not me. I am soooooooo Target's demographic.

BTW, the app that did the effect is FXCamera for Droid. We had a ball playing with it.

Friday, July 16, 2010


Jeff and Anya, originally uploaded by MrsBinParis.

Our first little girl was so much. She changed us, from a couple into a family of three, from marrieds into marrieds with kids, from people into parents. She was a challenge from day one, and never let us forget who was in control. One hundred percent her own person, she let us know her when she was ready. She was nothing we expected, always a surprise. Never easy.

So many parents say they bonded with their child before they even left the hospital. An instant link, stronger than they ever thought possible.

It didn't work that way for me, the first time. It took longer than I thought it should have, months rather than minutes. I felt terribly guilty for that. But though it was a slower process, the bond is strong, deep, lasting. Enmeshed. Now I can't imagine a world without her, a time without her, as if she was always there, before.

And the second time, it's different again.

The instant bond, it happened. The moment she was in my arms, she was mine and I knew her. The glow was instantaneous. I slipped into the old routines, the ones so hard won, broken in and comfortable. The easy baby they all talk about: zen, calm, predictable. A delight, a snuggler, smiling and relaxed.

Perhaps it's partly due to confidence, a knowledge of my own parenting abilities, or simple genetics, but whatever it is, this time it is easier. This time, the feelings of guilt are for the relief I feel, the ease I didn't have with my first baby. But it is what it is. Every moment with Rowan was worth it, and every moment with Anya is, too. They are just different.

As I typed this, Rowan came down the stairs in her favorite pink nightgown, fuzzy and worn. She sat on the floor next to her sister's bouncy chair, hugged her, and serenaded her with "I love you, a bushel and a peck!" She then came to me, and sang it again, hugging me around my "pretty neck", and ending with a big kiss.

I am so very blessed.

Sunday, July 11, 2010


Anya, 8 weeks: Dimple!, originally uploaded by MrsBinParis.

She's changing so quickly. Gaining weight, outgrowing her newborn clothes, and even some 0-3 month ones, holding her head up and making her voice heard. She's bigger than her sister and has a very different personality, though she looks so much like her. Anya loves Devo, long walks outside, warm baths, and snuggling. She hates her car seat with a passion, and for some reason, cucumbers make her poo green. She still nurses like a champ, and is a great sleeper, though not quite as much during the day as she used to (but still sleeps well at night, so I am not complaining!) Her right cheek has a little dimple that up until now has only been visible while she's nursing. I was thrilled to pull up this photo in iPhoto and find it there for all to see.

With the second one, there are never as many photos. Too busy taking care of two little miracles--picture time gets taken over by juice-fetching, bottom wiping, and tea party having. Hopefully, I can sneak in a few here and there, though. These are moments I do not want to forget.

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