Monday, May 26, 2008

C-ville Escape

We're just back from a super-fun long weekend in Charlottesville! We packed up the Mazda5 and snugged the shnug in her carseat for her first road trip. The weather was insanely beautiful, and so was Charlottesville.

Though, for some reason C-ville seems a lot smaller and more quaint than when we lived there 6 years ago. I was struck with the realization of just how young I was (23--a mere baby!) when Mom and I made the cross-country trip to visit C-ville and check out the law school for the first time. Mom, you'll be relieved to know that they've remodeled the Budget Inn!

Anyway, it was a great trip. We visited some of our favorite spots; toured the city to see what was the same and what has changed; went for a trail walk on the mountain leading up to Monticello; visited book store after used book store; and we hung out on the Downtown Mall.

And, of course, we ate and ate and ate! Locals claim that C-ville has more restaurants per capita than Paris or New York. It is a definitely a "foodie's" paradise!

With careful planning, we managed to revisit some favorites (Continental Divide, Bodo's Bagels [a C-ville classic] and Bellair Market [the best of C-ville's "gourmet" gas stations]) and try some new places, too (Bluegrass Grill & Bakery & Zo-ca-lo). My favorite: Splendora's Cucumber Gelato (think cucumber ice cream--light, fresh and heavenly!)

Tess did really well on the trip. I think she slept better at the hotel than she does at home! Still, it's good to be home. Tess and I have to rest up for our next adventure--we fly out to Idaho on Saturday!

Friday, May 23, 2008

More Where That Came From

Here are the other shots from yesterday's photo shoot. No, I didn't buy them; I just figured out how to download them to my blog.

Thursday, May 22, 2008


OK, try not to look too surprised! It hasn't been all that long since my last blog post!

Truth is, I've been waiting for something terribly exciting to write about. Seeing as that is not likely to happen anytime soon, these pics will have to suffice.

Dad came home to us after he spent a long weekend in Utah attending his grandmother's funeral. The service was nice and he really enjoyed seeing his sisters and extended family again. He even got to see Mer, Bri & LK (I'm very jealous!).

Tess & I were sure ready for Ry to be back! Tess' shrieking episodes reached new heights (in pitch, decibel level & frequency) while he was gone, and Mom's tolerance levels reached new lows!

It's so nice to have Ry around to help break up the monotony, even if it's just for a little while in the morning & evening (and sometimes middle of the night!). Ryan is a such a good dad! He's a calming influence on Tess (and me), which is wonderful.

While Dad was gone, Tess continued her adventures in the land of fruits and vegetables. Since everyone was so hopeful about Sweet Potatoes, we gave those a go. She did OK with them, but her favorite thus far is Peas! I'm a little horrified by that--they look so terrible! But she wolfs them down!

We tried Peaches today. Those have produced the worst faces from Tessie so far. I thought she would like them, but I had a taste and they are pretty sour. She still ate her Peaches, just not with the same gusto as some of the others.

We too were hunted down for a free photo portrait in Babies R Us today. Usually I turn them down, figuring that there will be a high-pressure sales pitch to get you to buy more pics.

I had an annoying experience with the photo shoot lady while I was in the hospital with Tessie. "What, you don't want to buy your baby's hospital picture?" (In other words, "Such a new mom and already such a terrible one!") "What's wrong, don't you think your baby is beautiful?" Yes, if only my baby weren't so hideous. Or rather, if only your camera work weren't so artless.

But Brooke seemed to fair pretty well from her Babies R Us photo session (I didn't notice any missing pounds of flesh), so I figured, "Why not?"

The experience once again confirmed that Tessie would make a terrible baby model. She's developed this fear of strangers lately and she was terrified of the photographer. But Tess managed to warm up, and we got a gummy grin out of her.

That's about it for now. We're looking forward to a long weekend away! Hopefully more pics will follow!

Friday, May 16, 2008


Sean, Tess & Wesley

Tess and I spent the morning hanging out with her two buddies, Sean and Wesley. My friend LaRae and I have been trading babysitting lately so we can go to doctor's appointments sans the bambinos.

She has two of the cutest little boys in the world! Sean is 2 yrs. old and his favorite number is 2. Wesley is 4 years old and his favorite number is 104. Wesley likes wagons (because they start with "W") and Sean likes snakes (they start with "S"). They've informed me that Tess must like turtles.

Showing off their raindrop pictures.
(It was raining today. No playground.)

Last time I visited, I was getting Tess out of the car and I could hear Sean inside the house screaming at the top of his lungs, "She's here! She's here! Tess is here!"

The boys are really good with Tess and like to bring down all of their toys and books to show her. A favorite topic of conversation is what Tess cannot do because she is a baby. "Babies can't eat bananas." "The playground is too dangerous for babies." "The slide is too dangerous for babies." "Babies can't sleep in bunkbeds." You get the idea.

Tess & Wes

Tess loves all the activity in their house and she gets along great with LaRae. It's nice to be able to leave Tess with somebody and not worry about her. And the boys are fun to be with too! In all, a pretty good arrangement!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Happy Birthday Baby!

Tessie is 5 months old today! What a big girl she's getting to be!

It's going by too fast.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Mommy Musings

We've had a such a nice Mother's Day! The rumors at church turned out to be true--we got roses and chocolates!

Sad story about the flowers, though. After Bishopric meeting this morning, Ry was tasked with setting out the flowers in the kitchen so they'd be ready to distribute after Sacrament Meeting. Once he got the flowers out of the fridge, Ry was having a hard time taking the flowers out of the vases. Then he realized the water in the vases was frozen!

Evidently, the flowers were left in the fridge over night with the fridge setting way too low! So you can imagine that the flowers looked pretty pathetic once it was time to hand them out. Bruised petals and dead leaves littered the chapel. Most of the flowers had a hard time keeping their defrosted little heads up.

Good thing the flowers were followed by chocolates! Next year, I say nix the flowers and blow the budget on chocolate! No defrosting required.

Tess wore a special dress from her Nana to church today. I've been waiting for her to grow into this dress--it is just so sweet! Once she was dolled up in her matching sweater and tights, she looked like the perfect Mother's Day package. Am I a lucky mom or what?

Wendy and Keith came over after church and we had a nice dinner with them. I'm afraid to report that Tess hasn't been taking to kindly to Papa Higginbotham lately. She gets upset and cries every time he tries to hold her.

I've tried explaining to Tess that when she was first born this is the man who paced the floor with her hour after hour in the middle of the night, when everybody else had practically given up on her. Good thing Keith is persistent. Tess, you're going to have to warm up to him sooner or later!

After dinner, us moms opened our fun presents. My mom sent me a pretty photo charm bracelet, so I can wear pics of my Tessie. Wendy and Keith gave me some yummy-smelling chocolate soap. (My mom and mother-in-law gave me presents. Now isn't that backwards?).

My two favorite people!
(Sorry, everyone else!)

Ry gave me some beautiful roses (better than the ones from church!), and Tess and Ry gave me some gift certificates to buy some new summer duds! I also got a custom-made card from Ry and Tess (Watch out, Reen. Ry has been hiding his card-making skills from us!).

Ry said he picked these pics of Tess because
she was wearing a colorful dress,
to match the colorful shirt that he
(or at least the "dog" version of himself)
was wearing in the card.

Tess has been having a few adventures in the world of baby food! Cast your vote on my poll to let me know which type of food you think she'll like best! So far, she's had pears and carrots, with pretty positive feedback. Carrots were definitely the messier of the two. Mer, these pics are for you.

That's about it. It's been raining nonstop for some time now. We have small creek running down our front sidewalk. But we're warm and cozy inside. And I'm happy and grateful.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Happy Mother's Day Weekend!

You could probably guess that in the past, Mother's Day has never been my favorite holiday.

But guess who gets to be a MOM this year?!!

Yep, that's right! No more trying to avoid deacons on Mother's Day Sunday, as they mercilessly hunt you down and force a wilting rose into your hand for all your motherly "potential."

Rumor has it that this year, the deacons will be giving out chocolate! Hand it over, boys!

This year, I'm grateful to be a MOM!

When it comes to being a GREAT mom, my mother has set the standard pretty darn high!

I'll do my best to put her example to good use!


Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Finger?-Lickin' Good

I couldn't resist taking a pic of Tess when she fell asleep in her vibrating bouncy chair today.

A friend gave me this chair when we brought Tess home from the hospital. She swore by it; she said it was an absolute lifesaver when her kids were first born.

Was she ever right! This is the only thing we could get Tess to sleep in for the first month of her life. Wendy worried that the hour upon hour of constant vibration might have some detrimental effect on her brain development. At that point, I didn't even care--I just wanted her to SLEEP!

Fortunately, we were able to ease her out of her bouncy chair addiction. When I tried her in it again today, I couldn't believe how ENORMOUS she looked in it! It used to swallow her up, and now she's totally hanging over the edge!

As you can tell, it still works its magic. And she was in a great mood when she woke up!

In addition to letting out high shrieks, Tess has picked up another less-than-flattering practice over the past couple days. The pediatrician told us we need to discourage her from sucking her thumb, or it might become a habit.

Her doctor didn't tell us what to do about this:

Yes, Tess has found her toes. Evidently they are delicious.