Monday, May 31, 2010

Kitchen Duty

Summer and the socializing that comes with it is in full swing, and as a result, my computer time is waning.  Obviously that's a good thing in that it means we're having too much fun to sit around and stare at a this glaring screen, but it's not a good thing for blogging.  Of course, it hasn't been all social fun time; I also spent a lot of time in the kitchen last week, so much that the bottom of my right foot got sore, presumably from standing on it for so long (??).    Not that that's not fun time, because it is. I really like hanging out in the kitchen and experimenting with new recipes especially now that there's some food in season. Last week we bought fresh peas at the farmer's market for the first time. We hadn't ever tasted fresh peas before and loved them so much that we housed the majority of them raw from the bag we bought them in.

On Tuesday I made potato leek soup, most of which I froze.  On Wednesday I made this kale and white bean soup that was awesome the first time around but is just so-so this time, and again froze most of it.  On Thursday I made two pans of lasagna, one to keep and one to give away. And on Friday, I made macaroni salad, beet and carrot vegggie burgers (awesome), and two loaves of bread the old fashioned way. That night after Hannah was asleep, I took a pan of lasagna, some of each of the soups, and a loaf of bread over to Mary's because she'd delivered her baby girl earlier last week and arrived home from the hospital on Friday. It was Eric's idea actually. We both agreed that bringing food is at the top of the list of Helpful Things You Can Do When Your Friend Has A Baby, and he reminded me of that earlier in the week when we got the it's-a-girl text message.  In addition to friends and neighbors bringing us yummy food in the hospital to keep us from starving, Libby had made a ton of delicious food in advance that she dropped off the day we got home and that fed us for the first week.  That's a debt I'm more than happy to pay forward and look forward to being able to do so a few more times this year.

When I got home from Mary's I spent another hour or more sitting on the back porch talking with MC and Amy. I just couldn't pull myself away even though I keep going to bed later and later and every morning I wake up and say I'm going to go to bed early that night...I love my neighbors.

I've got a pretty funny diaper story from Saturday, though I can't find the words to write it nearly as funny as Eric's impersonation.  I left early that morning to go climbing with Brandy and left Eric to put Hannah down for her morning nap, only she didn't ever fall asleep.  First she sat up there and pooped.  This is a normal routine for her if she doesn't poop earlier in the morning; she'll sit in her crib and play with her aquarium or read books until she poops and then when she does, she'll scream for us to come change her.  After that she usually passes right out.  But not this time.  Nope.  This time, after Eric cleaned her up and laid her back down, she took off her diaper, stood up with the diaper in one hand, peered over the bars of the crib, and pitched the diaper overboard.  He was watching her in the monitor when she did this and his impersonation of it is hysterical; it's all in the facial expression and I'm just not a good enough writer to relate the hilarity that has become Hannah. 

She's been running around in just a diaper a lot lately both because of the heat (we are using the air conditioning but keep it at 78 degrees--just enough to cut the humidity) and also because feeding her makes the kind of mess you might find in a barnyard after the pigs have been fed.  I'm tired of all her clothes getting stained. At first I thought it wasn't that big of a deal, after all, she's a baby and I'm no fashionista so it's no big deal if we end up with a little stain here and there, but the stains aren't little and they aren't here and there; they cover the entire front of one of her super cute shirts that I really like.  I've soaked it in both Oxyclean and Borax and it faded a bit, but not all the way so I decided that it does kinda matter and that I should at least try not to wreck her clothes, and since she rips off her bibs (not that they cover much territory anyway), the only option is to strip her down before every meal.  In addition to not ruining any more of her clothes, naked meal time makes for an easier clean up.  She's gotten pretty good at diaper removal and will often peel back the velcro tabs while shoveling peas into her mouth so when she's finished, I just drop her naked little butt into the sink and let her play there while I clean up.  

I think that bathing babies in the sink is really cute--in addition to being easier on the bather's back--but I never understood the logistics of how to make it work.  When they're itty bitty, they're too long to lay flat in the bottom of the sink (unless your sink is huge) and not yet capable of sitting up, so how do you do it? Wash with one hand and prop them up with the other?  Not that we had the option to try to figure it out considering   we tore out our kitchen, sink and everything else, shortly after Hannah was born.  Anyway, she loves to slide around the tub on all fours and we love to watch her being all crazy.

I've got more pictures and stories from our super fun weekend, but the pics aren't uploaded, and I'm too tired and zombie-like to tell the stories.  

Thursday, May 27, 2010

WWE: Hannah Vs. Baby Doll

There was a rare moment yesterday after nursing Hannah when I flopped onto my back on the couch and Hannah sat beside me and played with the baby doll that Grammy gave her.  I held the camera out away from us (to get some distance) and snapped some pics, and because of that, the following pictures aren't framed carefully, and some are a little blurry, which means the composition is a bit more abstract than is usual for me.  When I was taking them I just figured I'd crop them into traditional compositions, but then I decided not to because as it turns out, I kinda like them.....

Lately Hannah loves rough housing and wrestling with her dad, and she seems to imitate that dynamic with her baby.  So here she is getting ready to body slam her baby (oh, and I did crop this one):

Pinned! Baby is down for the count.

The below pic looks like Hannah is giving the baby a zerbert, but it's more like she's eating the baby, but in a good way. Does that make sense?? Hmmm...How to 'splain...I do the fake monster "I'm gonna eat you" thing with Hannah all the time. I mean, I don't say, I'm gonna eat you, I just pretend to eat her.  It makes her laugh, and she often does it back to me which is super funny and makes me laugh.  I wanted to call this post Zombie Baby on the Loose but Eric wouldn't let me. He has a love-hate relationship with zombies in that he loves to hate them. He is so afraid of them that one of the first things he did when he moved here was to scope out a safety zone where we can all hide in case of a zombie attack (the school down the street because it is brick and has few windows).  BUT, most people who are afraid of stuff avoid said stuff, right? So like, if you don't like spiders, you steer clear. Well, granted Eric isn't hanging out with actual zombies since there's no such thing, but he has probably seen every zombie movie ever made.  He watches them constantly. That's why I say it's a love-hate relationship.  Obsessed much???  Anyway, because of his extreme aversion for zombies, I like to pick on him by calling Hannah a zombie when she pretends to eat me. It creeps him out, and I think that's funny. 

Back to Hannah: You know what other zombie-esque thing she's been doing lately? Have I mentioned that she's learned to nurse while on all fours?  It's crazy.  So I'll be nursing her in the morning, and I told you how I take her back to bed with us so we can wake up slowly, well, she'll get all antsy mid nurse and crawl over to Eric to say good morning, and then she'll crawl back over to me and just lean down like an animal and start nursing. It's totally weird.  It's like she's feeding on me like a vampire or a wild animal...Man, hanging out with Eric has really warped me....I never watched creepy crap that starred vampires and zombies before he came along, and I try not to watch any of it now but sometimes it's hard to avoid since that seems to be all he ever watches...And now I'm referring to my adorable little sunshine of a munchkin daughter as a zombie and a vampire.  Sheesh!!!

Yikes. That was quit the digression...The point is, Hannah is absolutely hysterical. See?

Monday, May 24, 2010

In the Closet

Hannah's new favorite play place is our closet. She often initiates stair climbing and when she gets to the top, she hangs a hard left into our bedroom and makes a beeline for my clothes which hang close to the floor and provide a place to swing, hide, and play peek-a-boo.  I keep trying to get video of it but it's not working out, both because the space is kinda narrow and doesn't leave enough space and also because when that camera flash starts flashing, Hannah forgets about the clothes and lunges for the camera.  The best I could do is the video below which Eric is not a fan of since it shows his upper left shoulder unclothed and he hates his upper left shoulder.  Kidding, kidding: He doesn't have a favorite shoulder. But he is a little embarrassed about being on video with his shirt off.  I assured him that the majority of my readers wouldn't be offended by his bare naked shoulder.  As for why he's topless, well, in addition to beelining for the closet every time she summits the staircase, Hannah has also made it her first stop every morning every nursing.  While Eric and I are still shaking the sleep boogers out of our eyes, she's already chugged her breakfast, repelled herself off his side of the bed, and sprinted to the closet.  This morning Eric stumbled out after her and laid on the floor in the closet to play a rather passive peek-a-boo partner.  This was literally a stumble and did not include a pit stop at the dresser to grab a shirt, hence the shoulder nudity.

When peek-a-boo gets boring (because all the clothes have been torn from their hangers and are laying on the floor), Hannah heads for the mirrors at the back of the closet. Hanging those mirrors has been on the to do list for a couple of months now, along with vacuum the stairs and weed the sidewalk cracks, neither of which seems to make it to the priority position.  The rather lengthy video linked below is Hannah playing with reflection.  Notice the tongue waggle; she's been doing that pretty constantly for a couple of weeks now. I think it's hysterical.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

First Birthday Party

Hannah went to her first birthday party yesterday.  Her friend Kylie turned 1 last week, and Kylie's parents threw a big ol' shindig that was lots of fun! Unfortunately, the camera was acting up.  Pushing the take picture button resulted in....nothing. No picture. Since that button was also not auto focusing, I thought there might be a problem with the lens so I removed it and replaced it, and that sorta helped, but it's still going in and out and only working sporadically. I'm guessing it's time to put the camera out of Hannah's reach....Maybe she dropped it a few too many times.   Anyway, I was able to salvage the following few pics.

First, Hannah and the birthday girl in a wagon.

The birthday girl digs into her first cake. Yumm!!

In other news, our deck is almost finished.  We bought some great wind chimes yesterday, and today we bought six new herbs at the farmer's market.  Eric installed two window boxes on the edge of the deck for the herbs so now all I have to do when I need a snip of oregano is walk right out the back door and snip it! I love it. I also love it that we have window boxes with herbs rather than flowers--I like how it's functional and still beautiful, but in a unique way.  We also have 6 other herbs in some pots on the patio, so when I need basil or cilantro, I have to walk down the steps for a snip.  I should have taken some pictures...Maybe I will tomorrow. Today I just got some shots of Hannah making a mess of the herbs before Eric planted them.

(Those are the tomato plants.)

I'm finding myself wordless these days, less verbose....Life is good, and there is little to say.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Step Ladder to Heaven

It's possible that I am overestimating Hannah's current communication skills (no repeat on the nose touching), but I'm pretty sure that she said "da da" this morning. After her first nursing today, she crawled over to Eric's empty side and said "da!" then after a pause "da!"  So maybe she was just doing her baby babble and wasn't saying the name of the guy who is usually laying there when she finishes nursing in the morning, but even if that's the case, her use of the consonant "d" has been pretty rare so that verbal development alone is exciting.

Another rare moment is pictured below.  Hannah sat still for at least 20 minutes while Eric read book after book to her on Monday. It was really cute.  For all you other parents out there who think, "big deal,  my kids snuggles up with daddy to read all the time," well, my kid doesn't.  Granted, she's been more into books lately and into turning the pages and she'll let you read a few pages, sometimes even a whole book before she pushes it aside and continues trying to scale the walls, so to see her sitting still like that with him was just awesome.  

Mmmmm....fresh bread.

Her eyes are a teeny bit bigger than her stomach.

Another thing Hannah learned to do today: climb a step ladder by herself....Like I said, she's trying to scale the walls.  Rather than pull her down, I moved the ladder so it was next to where I was chopping vegetables and kept one eye on her and one on my rapidly moving knife.  Somehow, I didn't lose a finger and she didn't fall.  So this is what Eric saw when he came home from work today:

The color setting was a little screwed up on this one but I like the smiles too much not to include it.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

QT at the City Park

Sunday was my brother's 28th birthday.  It was also the day that we decided to celebrate Mother's Day with our mom (that's how we roll--moving holidays around as we see fit).  So upon waking Sunday morning, Eric played with Hannah while I packed our stuff for the day.  When she showed the first sign of being sleepy, I changed her diaper, buckled her into her car seat with her lovey/blankie thingy, started the car, hit play on the Renee and Jeremy CD that I keep in the car CD player, and drove west.  She was asleep within about 15 minutes and without much fussing and woke up a little over an hour later as I was driving by my mom's house. (I was driving by it because I was going to cruise the dual a bit to give Hannah a chance to wake up naturally.) 

Chip and Clay showed up shortly after us, and we all played with mom's itty bitty chihuahua for a bit before heading off to lunch.  From there we headed to the City Park for some play time.  I really love that park.  I think it's probably my favorite of Hagerstown's features, not that I know of any other features considering I haven't lived there since I was 18 and I rarely visit, but I think even if I did know of some others, City Park would probably still top the list.

We snuggled the babies into a swing together just for fun and also because Clay doesn't hold himself up too well yet--probably by choice because he seems like a pretty laid back little dude who's not too interested in working up a sweat.  He totally reclined back on Hannah and was even resting his head on her shoulder at one point.  That really confused her; she kept reaching her hand back and trying to turn around to figure out what was going on.

Chip didn't think Clay could sit in a swing on own his own but mom finally convinced him to give it a try.  The way those swings are built, I feel like they're safe for pretty much any baby of his size (he is over 18 pounds--2 pounds heavier than his cousin who is almost 3 months older than him).  Check out how laid back he is. Hannah's leaning forward eagerly and kicking her feet, and Clay's just chillin.  It's so funny how different they are!

I love the following set of pics so I may have posted too many...As usual, I couldn't pick a favorite.  Grammy was doing something silly that was cracking Hannah up, and I caught Hannah in the midst of a couple of really cute giggles.

Laaaaaaaid baaaack....

When we got tired of the playground, Grammy bought some duck food from the concession stand and we went off in search of a good duck-feeding spot.  Unfortunately, such a spot really doesn't exist because everyone and their brother feeds those ducks so they aren't particularly hungry and do not come flocking when you start throwing food like a flock of pigeons in the city or seagulls on the beach.  I was hoping for a big crazy flapping production for the babies' sake. The most excitement we came across was when we crossed the path of this mafia gang of geese who had a baby in tow themselves and honked loudly at everyone to get out of the way, or else.  We stood back and waited patiently for them to cross and get some distance.  They looked angry and serious and scary.  (Except the little one, it was just cute!)

This little rocky enclave was one of my favorite places to hang out in high school.  I thought it would be a good duck feeding spot but there were no ducks around so we grabbed a bench.  This was when the Mamarazzi alarm went off, screaming "photo op! photo op! photo op!" so I passed the camera to mom.

She snapped this mother/daughter profile without me knowing.

Extreme close up!! Whoaaaaa!!!! (Wayne's World....)

Eventually we gave up looking for the spot and settled on this particular spot to feed this particular duck--I mean goose.  

Chip really wanted to try to grab one of those insanely overweight fish by the gills and yoke it up out of the water but fortunately for the rest of us, he refrained from doing so.

I love this one of Grammy and Clay. He's such a sweet, happy baby.

And I love the look on Hannah's face in this one; I feel like we'll see more like this when she hits puberty.

I love my dear ol' hubby and my sister-in-law, but I gotta admit, it was kinda nice to spend the day with mom and Chip and the babies. It was like in the old days when it was just the three of us, except with babies, so I guess that means it wasn't at all like the old days...but it was really nice.

After a couple of hours at the park Hannah started getting sleepy and rubbing her face on Grammy's shoulder so we headed back to the car, changed her diaper, handed her her lovey/blankie thing, hit play on the CD player, and drove home.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Breaking News!

I'm busily editing the 78 pictures I took while in Hagerstown on Sunday and will post a few of them eventually, but in the meantime, we've got breaking news:  Tonight we asked Hannah to touch her nose, and she did!!!!!

Here's the back story: She has this Baby Einstein bath time book called Mimi's Toes that Eric reads to her almost every night in the tub.  The repeated verse on each page is "See Mama wash Mimi from her feet to her nose, then come back and tickle Mimi's toes."  When I read it to her, I act it out, and I guess Eric does too though I'm normally folding diapers or something when he's bathing her so I don't know.  So tonight after bath, I was trying to distract her while Eric was getting her diaper on (otherwise we end up with diaper rash cream all over the place and a perpetually naked baby), and I was holding the baby doll that Grammy got for her this weekend (her first doll with plastic limbs!) and I started saying singing "toes to the nose" (a baby yoga move) and using the doll to illustrate and then "see baby touch her nose!"  Then I did "see mama touch her nose" and I touched my nose, and then it was Eric's turn, and then I sang "see Hannah touch her nose, can you touch your nose?" and she did!!!!!!!  It was so cool.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

The Techno-Baker Hosts a Pizza Party

I think I forgot to mention that I got a bread machine for my birthday. I requested a loaf pan and a bread bucket, two tools recommended in Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day, an awesome book that makes bread making super easy and quick.  My mom got that book for Eric for Christmas since he'd shown an interest in making bread earlier in the year. I ended up using the book more than him though and officially claimed it as my own a couple of weeks ago by flagging all the recipes I wanted to try with post-its. Right about then I also decided that I'd need some serious tools to increase the success of my serious efforts.  My birthday list looked like this:
1. Loaf pan
2. Bread bucket
3. Nice looseleaf tea
4. Recipe book holder thingy

Eric being Eric went a mile and a half farther and got me a ridiculous amount of awesome tea from Teavana and super nice, fancy pants bread machine which, quite frankly, scared the bejesus out of me and made me feel like a cheater, cheater pumpkin eater.  AT FIRST.  See, I'm not a fan of thingys with buttons, and also I was feeling like quite the super mom (a status it's hard not to aspire toward) for making bread almost every day (though if you read that book you'd see how un-super the skills and time required for it are--but to those who haven't read it, I seem awesome, right?).  So I wasn't totally enthused with my gift.  Loaf number one (pictured below) increased my lack of enthusiasm. I thought the point of a bread machine was to throw in the ingredients, push a button, and wallah! Fresh bread! Right? Wrong....I threw in the ingredients IN THE ORDER MENTIONED (because that's like the number one commandment with bread machines), pushed the buttons, and after 4-1/2 hours, I pulled this out of the techno-baker's belly:

Tantalizing, eh?? It almost looked granola-ish, but it did not taste granola-ish.  Not good. At all.  I was ready to return the techno-baker and return to my old-fashioned, highly-respected bread making ways but Eric suggested we try again, so I did.  This time I watched the loaf a bit more carefully and when it hit the rise cycle and there was still a mound of flour visible through the peep hole, I paused it, pulled out the un-mixed dough, mixed it myself, and then returned the dough to the machine to continue on with its magical process.  And this time the loaf turned out good, so good in fact that I scarfed it prior to taking any pictures.  But the fact that I had to hover over the peep hole and mix the dough myself seemed to defeat the purpose and still made me want to return it.  I mean, if I'm doing all that, it's not saving me any time.  However, when I was returning the dough in its little dough pan thingy back to the machine, I noticed what proved to be crucial: I snapped it down farther that time than I had previous times. At least, I was pretty sure it went in a little farther. Hmmmm....I conjectured that it was POSSIBLE that the problem all along was that I wasn't snapping it in far enough. Of course I'd prefer to blame the machine than the user so if you could all support me in cursing the machine, that'd be much appreciated.  All the same, I kept this possible theory to myself for the time being and just enjoyed that loaf.

Yesterday we took a bread-making break and decided to give pizza dough a try. One of Eric's favorite family traditions growing up was Friday night pizza night where they'd all make their own pizzas.  That's the kind of tradition I can get behind, though I don't think we'll be doing it EVERY Friday just yet, but maybe when she's older. So, trial three with the bread machine: throw in the ingredients, snap the dough pan thingy in past the point of previous snaps, push the buttons, and voila! Awesome pizza dough in an hour and a half. We couldn't pick which toppings we wanted so we made four pizzas and invited the neighbors over. Eric made his favorites, Hawaiin and BBQ Chicken, and I made one with artichoke hearts, black olives, and sautéed mushrooms and a margherita pizza for Hannah that just had tomatoes, basil, mozzarella, and a little bit of garlic and dried oregano.  As suspected, her first pizza party was a big hit.  See the piece she's holding upside down in the pic below? She devoured TWO of those.

Loaf three is in the bread machine right now, and it looks like it's going to turn out perfectly so I guess we won't be returning the techno-baker after all.  Now that I'm not intimidated by its shiny exterior and am less concerned with the previous super image I was shooting for, I'll admit that the techno-baker has some perks.  What I like most about it is that I can make one loaf at a time.  My only complaint with my previous method is that it requires you to make your dough in bulk, that's why it was called Artisan Bread in 5 MINUTES a Day, because you only mix ingredients once for every 3-4 loafs.  The dough keeps in the fridge for like 2 weeks and you just pull a handful out every day, let it rise, and toss it in the oven.  But all that dough takes up a lot of room in the fridge and also, if I wanted to make a specialty loaf like cinnamon raisin or something (which I never have) it would mean I couldn't be making a regular loaf at the same time because I only had one container that fit the dough and only room for that one in the fridge anyway (that's why I asked for a bread bucket in the hopes that that would take up less room in the fridge and allow me to bake two loafs at a time).  So as far as fridge space and loaf flavor flexibility is concerned, the techno-baker wins. And on the taste scale, so far I think it's equal to my previous methods.  And yeah, as it turned out, it really is as easy as putting in the ingredients and pushing a button, so long as you are one of the snap-savvier people on the planet, that is. 

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Bread and Toilet Paper

Hannah had her 9-month checkup today.  One of the tests the pediatrician does is to hold Hannah's hands and pull a little, I guess to test the strength her arms??? Make sure her shoulders are intact?? No clue, but of course, Hannah took that opportunity to pull herself to standing and then started prancing around the exam table.  Her doctor said, "You're not supposed to be walking yet!" and then proclaimed that there was no doubt she'd walk (unassisted) into her 12-month checkup. She also said that Hannah had good social skills as evidenced by her eye contact and the way she squealed her way into our conversation.  Her only concern was with Hannah's weight which is only in the 25th percentile.  (She's 28-1/2 inches long/tall which puts her in the 80th percentile for height, but she only weights 16 pounds, 3 ounces. And her head circumference, by the way, is 45.5 cm.)  The doctor didn't really seem concerned, but said to not skimp on the fatty foods (butter, olive oil, cheese, avocado) and suggested I sneak some formula into Hannah's food.  I nodded, but I have no intention of giving Hannah formula.  I try really  hard to only give her whole foods, and it's not always possible considering I am not yet making my own pasta (among other things), but I see no need to start giving her formula.  She's petite, but she's not malnourished or even the least bit unhealthy.  Anyway, my mom said that I was also petite at her age.  Hannah is one of the most active, outspoken babies I've ever met; I think she's doing better than fine on her current diet of breast milk and whole foods.

While we're talking about whole foods, Hannah's diet now includes things like rhubarb, polenta, soba noodles, radishes, leeks, mango, and tofu (and yes, I know tofu is a processed food).  Surprisingly, she loves all these things.  I cut the rhubarb with strawberries and apple to take out some of the tang, but it's still pretty tangy so I wasn't sure how she'd take to it, but the gal has a sour tooth.  The radishes and leeks were in this awesome recipe for spring vegetable ragout that I found in my Body + Soul (couldn't find the link on the magazine's website, but this blogger retyped it). I pureed some of it for Hannah and although she didn't scarf it like she scarfs a mango, she was pretty into it.  Tonight we made her an egg yolk omelet with red onion, tomato, and goat cheese, and she LOVED it.  We put it whole on her tray, and she couldn't shovel it into her mouth fast enough.  I've tried giving her egg yolk before but she was never into it, probably because I usually put it with avocado which much to my dismay, she is not that into.  For the most part, she's shaping up to be a pretty good eater!

Of course, bread is still her number one favorite food. Bread and toilet paper....

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Stair Squealer

Just remembered about this video I took last week of Hannah climbing and squealing her way up the stairs.

It's kinda long and probably only the kind of thing that grandmothers and mothers love, but I wanted to share it anyway.

Monday, May 10, 2010

A Mother of a Post

I did that thing where I put off posting because I've been too exhausted from all the fun I've been having and at this point, trying to catch up without completely overwhelming and annoying my dear readers is stressful and intimidating.

I'm a fan of chronological order so rather than go in reverse, I'm starting with where I left off on Thursday.  I snapped the first two pics because I love this outfit of hers and was therefore a little trigger happy.  Anyway, since she spends a lot of her time rooting through the drawers in our coffee table, it's a good memory to capture.  Emptying the drawers is how she kept busy while I threw some toys, her dinner, the camera, and a sheet in my backpack in preparation of the season's very first First Thursday.  

I'd been looking forward to First Thursdays for months, and it totally lived up to my expectations, which really only required that Hannah have fun; as long as she isn't miserable and screaming, I'm not either.  She was in such good spirits, that we didn't want to leave and ended up lingering until almost 7:00 (which is bath time).  Frankly, I'm not surprised that she had fun: What's not to love about being outside, laying in the grass, listening to music, being surrounded by tons of people who also love those things and therefore have good energy, and hanging out in a family friendly beer drinking atmosphere?  Add to that the fact that the weather was more perfect than perfect--sunny and some awesome temperature, maybe 78ish??  We got there almost an hour early and put our blanket in the shade of a tree behind the sound booth.  No it wasn't the best view, but the shade was awesome and honestly, I didn't really care what band was playing or what they looked like while playing; I was in it for the atmosphere.

Hannah has gotten super social in the last couple of months.  She hasn't seen Krystal since Halloween but went right to her and started showing off her almost-walking skills.  Later on she tried to sneak over to our neighbor's blanket (who we didn't know).  

That Baby Einstein: Touch and Feel Baby Animals is tied with Goodnight Gorilla for her absolute favorite book.  I leave Goodnight Gorilla in her room though since it's a before bed book, but the touch and feel book comes almost everywhere with us.  She likes the kitty page best, though she's recently become interested in the hedgehog.

Hannah took a break from socializing to chill out with dad.  (There's Grannah in the background!) 

Hanging with Granpah.

Krystal's hubby jogged down with their dog Deliliah who's a big ol' sweet baby.  Hannah looks like she's pulling away in this pic, but she spent most of the time moving toward the dog.  She got a couple of good dog kisses in and then got to explore the dog's teeth and ears and toenails, all the stuff I'm pretty sure she wants to do with Kaya but you know Kaya's not about to let that happen.  

(Preggo Mary in the background!!)

Becca (beside Mary) took some pics so that I could make an appearance on the blog.

On Friday, we went with Adrienne and Kylie to the Mother Goose on the Loose at the main library branch on Fridays (I guess there's one every day of the week at a different library).  I forgot how amazing the main library was, and the kid area was beyond awesome.  Story time is in this big, sunlit room with tons of toys and all these little stuffed birds that make the correct bird noises.  Outside that room, the kid center is huge with tons of stuff and a Koi pond!!!  Here's Hannah checking out the fish with Grannah (all the Koi swam to the other side right before I took this pic). 

After the library we trekked around the Flower Mart Festival (just a couple of blocks from the library), grabbed some festival food, and camped out in the grass before resuming our flower gazing.  I took some pics of the picnic but forgot to change the white balance so they turned out blue and are therefore un-postable.

A couple of hours later I showered and put on something other than a nursing tank.  It's not everyday that I don a real bra; to commemorate the occasion, we had Eric's dad take a pic. Since Friday was the day I entered the dirty thirties, Eric and I had planned to go out to dinner. This was the first birthday that I wasn't obsessed with celebrating.  Normally I try to plan something fun, but this year, in spite of it being a big birthday, I wasn't interested in planning a crazy fiasco.

We never made it to dinner though because Eric had planned a surprise party at Patterson Bowling Center complete with pizza, rhubarb crumble made by Laura, and of course, duckpin bowling. It was a short party since we drove the Cinderella chariot and I had to be home shortly after 7:00 to nurse Hannah before bed, but it was really nice! 

I have no idea what happened on Saturday....It's all a blur, but my first Mother's Day was great!  Laura came over around 3:00 and we went to the gym (the one I used to belong to), we did a little cardio, then went to an awesomely relaxing yoga class with my favorite yoga teacher.  After yoga we sat in the sauna for a while, and then when I got home, I soaked in the tub for--something I haven't done in a long time.  After a few minutes Hannah joined me. Of course the water was a lot deeper than she was used to so she was having fun climbing all over me and kicking and splashing.  She is hysterical and a ton of fun to be around these days.  I'm really loving this mom thing these days.

I hope everyone else got in a little R&R to celebrate Mother's Day!