Wednesday, August 24, 2011


Audrey is growing every day and at an incredible rate.  Things are happening so fast that it's hard to keep track!   
There is definitely more smiling, more often, but never when I hold up the camera!  My favorite is when she wakes up in the morning or after a nap and I go in to retrieve her - she gets this goofy grin on her face that just melts my heart!

There's also more laughing.  Ticklish toes, just like her daddy!  If you missed it, or if you didn't, this is always worth a watch:

There's this cute hat.  Thanks Aunt Rachel!

And fall and winter clothes, size 6 months!  Of course, it's still too hot to wear any of them and of course she has summer clothes that she's never worn that are already too small, but I CAN'T WAIT for her to wear her new stuff!

3-Piece Microfleece Vest SetEmbroidered Overalls Blue Ribbon - Fuchsia w/Fuchsia Organza Stretch Pants

Yay for fall and overalls, hoodies, and rufflebutts!

She's interested in her toys!  And her hands!  And her feet!  And my hair and necklaces!  And Toby!  And Daddy's facial hair!

Okay, well. Kind of interested in her toys.  She's at least interested enough to try to put them in her mouth!  She's also started just barely reaching for things and has just about figured out how to get (and keep) some fingers in her mouth.

And then, I think I should be scared, there are the Houdini skills never before seen or even imagined.  Such as...

Her head started out on the left side of the picture... an hour later, I went in to get her from her nap, and was STUNNED to see that she'd done a complete 180 in her crib!  She's also started figuring out how to escape the swaddlers we use, even this one with the super tight fit and zipper is no match for our little magician!  What does htis mean?  I need to hurry up and get all the fluff OUT of her crib! 

Supermoms, please don't shun me for the stuff animals, crib bumper and blankets.  Before this, she never moved an inch. Promise.

What's next!???  Can't wait to find out!

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Mamma and the Twins Train for a {Half} Marathon

And its painful.  And embarrassing.  For all involved.  And by "all" I mean - me, myself, both boobs (but especially the left thanks to a clogged duct or something), Toby, and the innocent folks (and the not-so-innocent-looking-guy on a mini-motorcycle) on the Towpath. 

Let me back up.  Before Audrey was born, I signed up to run the the half portion of the Monumental Marathon on November 5th.  I've run this race before and it is a small-ish event that takes a nice route through downtown Indianapolis, up Mass Ave, and into some of the near-northside neighborhoods before the final jaunt down Meridian to the finish at the state government center.  I signed up to give myself a goal after falling out of shape while pregnant. You can sign up here.

I am following a 12-week training program put out by a guy named Hal Higdon.  He's some kind of long-distance running guru and his novice program has gotten me through three previous half marathon's and I expect that it will again this time.  I'm one week in, ran 11.9 miles (with 4 of those being consecutive) and averaged, uh, 12.5 minute miles.  Not super impressive distance or speed BUT, keeping it in perspective, I ran more in this one week than I've run in the last year combined.  I'm also happy to report that my favorite running pants fit comfortably again and my lungs and legs feel like they should both during and after a run. 

"So, Kate, it sounds like you're off to a good start. What's painful and eembarrassing?" you ask.

One word - boobs. Oh holy boobs... running... cue pain and embarrassment.

I'm happily breastfeeding Audrey.  I love that my body can do this amazing thing and nourish my baby.  I'm proud that I didn't give up when it was difficult.  I love how she tickles my side while nursing.  I find joy in knowing that she needs me like she needs no one else.  I love that she can nurse while we're both half asleep.  Pumping at work is a way to stay connected to her even when we're apart.  I hope to continue breastfeeding until we are both ready to stop.

All that being said, I wish I could leave the amazing, wonderful, full, baby-nourishing machines at home when I head out for a run.  They are just too much.  And my current sports bras are not up for the challenge of containing them.  Hence the pain. And the embarrassment.  Unfortunately for the aforementioned folks (innocent and not-so-innocent) on the Towpath, the embarrassment didn't set in until AFTER I'd run over 5 miles early in the week and caught a glimpse of myself running in the store windows at the Safeway grocery store down the street.  Needless to say, I walked the rest of the way home and did 4 miles on the treadmill today.

Next run? To Lululemon for a Ta Ta Tamer.

If you saw me on the Towpath.  Please accept my apologies.  It won't happen again.

Sunday, August 14, 2011


Between July being the saddest month of the year for me (the memory of a miscarriage, the anniversary of my mom's death and the recent death of Blake's uncle, Tom) and having to start back at work last week, the last few weeks have been a bit stressful and accompanied by more than a tear or two.  At times, the stress and sadness can seem permanent and all-consuming.  Like they will never fade and perhaps only get worse.

But then, when I least expect it, the clouds break and time rolls on, bringing me back to all that is good.  In the brightest moments, the ones I find myself living for on the most difficult days, there is laughter.  By God, there is laughter.

Thanks to Toby...

What? This amazing play mat with dangley things isn't for me?

 Thanks to Audrey...

And special thanks to my hair...

Geeze, Mom, you are so embarrassing.

I might watch the You Tube video ten times a day for the next week!  Of course, not from the office though.

Wishing you belly laughs galore,
Barbara, Barbara Bush

Friday, August 5, 2011

Kids, as in, more than one...

No, we're not planning for #2 just yet.  But you might say we're planning to plan and hoping that we will be fortunate enough to have more children when the time is right (or as right as it can be).

I loved being pregnant (and the stretchy pants, flats, and Big Macs that went along with it).  I've loved spending these first 12 weeks at home, focused on Audrey and nurturing her.  I look forward to having both experiences again.  Sure, it would be seriously cheaper and probably a lot easier to stop now, before we're outnumberd by dogs and children, but we think that siblings (of the human kind) are important. Blake and I both each have one brother and I think I speak for both of us when I say that we are better and our lives are better because of them.  I'm also pretty sure that none of the grandparents would object to more kids.

Before we make any big decisions though, there are a lot of little ones that need to be made about things like jobs, finances and our little bungalow of a house (and whether it can hold any more people).  So, until it's time to make those decisions, we will focus on the blessings we have before us now!  Don't blame me though for focusing in my stretchy pants.


Monday, August 1, 2011

Stuck on G: Grief

A post ago, I reverted to G rather than moving on to K.  And now, it looks like I'm stuck on it...

Blake's uncle, Tom, passed away unexpectedly last week and the family has been reeling ever since.  While I know that Blake and the rest of Tom's most immediate, blood-related family are hurting the worst, familiar feelings of grief, regret, anger, and sadness have been washing over me in waves, too, the same way that they did after my mom died 5 years ago.  I'm hoping that my experience with these feelings and the lessons I've learned about grief can help my family, Blake especially, during this incredibly sad time.

Grief is not something that you go through or get over.  It lives inside of us from the time we first experience it.  Every now and then, when I think about my mom and the day she died, I of course feel sad and angry, but more than anything, I am upset at myself because I didn't insist on seeing her to say goodbye.  True, she was in a horrible accident and probably would not have looked like the person I knew (the funeral director said that there was no chance of having an open casket, and we believed him and understood), but I really think that they could have let me see her hand, or her elbow, or a toe, or something at the scene.  That I could have just seen that one little part of her body that maybe still looked normal.  That I could have touched it or held it or kissed it and said goodbye to the body that housed her and that had once housed me.  But I didn't.  I don't think I knew I could.  But in hindsight, I know I could have and should have.  I'm crying now thinking about her pinky toe. That is regret.  That is lingering grief.  It will never leave me. 

Grief is a broken-heart.  After my mom died, I had a hard time sleeping.  I could fall asleep after crying for a few hours but then would have a bad dream and wake up shortly thereafter and the whole process would start all over.  It was physically painful to lay in bed but even more painful to get out of bed.  I saw the family doctor who had been taking care of me and my family since I was little.  He gave me a prescription of sleeping medicine to try but told me that pills wouldn't help.  "You're suffering from a broken heart," he said, "and there is no prescription that can fix that kind of grief."  He was right.  The sleeping pills did jack.  And my heart still hurts.

Be more like John Wooden and less like Bobby Knight.  I went back to see that doctor again a few months later.  I was still having trouble sleeping but was mainly seeking relief from a sinus infection.  We talked about my mom and my broken heart.  I told him I thought it was mending, but knew it would never be the same.  He agreed.  He then pointed towards his wall.  At first I thought he was pointing to the photo of him and Pete Rose from the early 1980s.  "What the heck does Pete Rose have to do with me?" I was thinking.  But then I realized he was pointing to a picture of a guy I didn't recognize. "That," the doctor said, "is John Wooden. Be more like him and less like Bobby Knight."  I left the office irritated (though my sinus infection improved with the nasal spray he prescribed...).  I knew of Bobby Knight but had no idea who John Wooden was.  Now I know and though I still don't totally get what my doctor was saying, I try to be like John Wooden.  Or at the very least, less like Bobby Knight.  Especially when facing grief.  Grief doesn't respond well to having folding chairs thrown at its head.  It needs to be respected.

Next post, K, I promise.