Saturday, April 25, 2009

a very long post

First of all, this weekend marks a year since I lost my status of a college student.  I do miss it sometimes--not to be able to use the excuse of "too much homework" as for why I don't do the laundry.  I've been considering all that has happened since this momentous day, and thought I'd share a few of the highlights...

1) Not too long after graduation, we moved to Tennessee.  Even though I have a degree in sociology, nothing could have quite prepared me for the culture that I have encountered here in the south.  It is intriguing and endearing to me, but I'm not sure I'll ever be able to fully embrace it.  Try as I might, I just don't think I'll ever master the local ho down shuffle :).   Let that all inspire you to come visit and see just what that is for yourself. 

2)  A few months after graduating, I had girl #2.  I can't believe Ellie is almost a year old.  Being one who thinks sisters are an absolute necessity in life, I couldn't be happier that Gracie has a sister.  I could sit for hours and observe their interactions and witness the beginnings of a great friendship developing.  But of course I can't do that because at this point I'm always pulling Gracie off of Ellie,  changing one or more diapers, or trying to interpret cries and toddler language.  

3) I have definitely lost more hair than I have weight postpartum ;)  But the hair is almost all back, and even getting past the fuzzy, stand-up-straight phase, which makes such a subtle but oh-so-significant difference in the appearance of my hair.  Seriously, if only my body could shed the weight like it did the hair :)

4) It's been rather strange to be completely school-free for the first time in my life.  I find that I don't quite know what I like to do in my free time.  I can't say that I've ever been too pro-active about learning because school has always given me a reason to read and has made it easy to expand my mind.  So I figure I've taken a good year-long break from all of that and in order to prevent my brain from going to mush, here's to a new year of learning and developing new talents!  Maybe I'll come up with some new gadget to post on this blog thing to keep you all updated on my endeavors! 

4)  We no longer live with cinder block walls.  We have upgraded to nicely painted, smooth walls.  But you know, sometimes I miss the cinder block walls because you didn't waste so much energy trying to make them pretty.  It was a lost cause to try to spruce up a 50 year old apartment too much, so you did what you could, then went on with your life.  But I feel like home ownership brings with it this obligation to decorate and clean, and decorate some more.  Ahhh, it really can become so stressful and time-consuming to the non-creative, undeceive type like me.  So here is to being happy with the current state of my home, and being content with a yellow wall instead of a cinder block wall, and then getting on with my life.       

I hope you thoroughly enjoyed all of that wisdom from a college graduate.  Allright, now for some more pictures to make up what I'm sure is one of my longest posts yet.  

I've got to prove to everyone that I'm a fun mother  by posting a picture of Gracie with Easter bunny :). 

We then spent the weekend enjoying a mock-camping trip where we built a fire in Jake's parents backyard, went fishing the next day, and even managed to dye some eggs while we were at it.  

These next few pictures demonstrate an ongoing activity around here--mowing the lawn.  I don't know if it's such a good idea to have almost an acre of land when you don't have a riding lawn mower.  It took hours, spanned over a few weeks to mow all of the lawn.  So by the time we finish, it rains for a couple of days and it looks like we haven't even mowed at all.  But my theory is the longer the grass gets, the more satisfying it is to cut it.  

Ellie is especially a good sport to sit in her stroller for hours and watch us mow the lawn.

Gracie's first picnic outside.  She loved it.  

And of course, Happy Earth Day to everyone.  Hah, last weekend we went to an Earth Day festival in Nashville.  It was quite entertaining to mingle with so many earthy, tree-hugging type people.  Practically everyone brought along their dogs, but we decided to bring our children instead :)  

I'm not quite sure how funnel cake made its way into an organic, all natural, earth friendly fair, but I enjoyed it nonetheless.  It was actually my first, and surely not my last experience with it.  mmmmmmm.

And if you'll look closely, you'll notice Ellie's black cheek.  That's right, not a black-eye, a black cheek.  It's pretty unique.  She fell off a chair (as a matter of fact, the very chair she's sitting on in the picture).  

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

the solution to all of my problems

Okay, so we decided to not go through with the purchase of the sweet orange van, but I am seriously considering purchasing this gadget: 


The Key to Waking Up Refreshed
Why is it so hard to wake up to a normal alarm clock? Because a normal alarm clock can't detect where you are in your sleep cycle - a continuous cycle from deep sleep, to brief almost-awake moments, and back to deep sleep again. Occasionally, your alarm may catch you at an optimal, almost-awake moment and you wake up feeling refreshed, but usually you grope for the snooze button waking up tired and groggy.

Wake at Your Perfect Time
® puts an end to that tired feeling. Once you set its alarm window, it monitors your body and continuously looks for your optimal waking times so it can wake you at just the right moment. Imagine not feeling tired in the morning and getting a few extra minutes out of your day.