Sunday, May 29, 2011

That Was Mine!

I had completely forgotten about this... my Mom-Mom made me this bedspread that depicts all the books we used to read at bedtime! As soon as we transform Chloe's crib into a bed, we can start using this bedspread for her... as you can see, she didn't want to wait!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

The First Shore Weekend of 2011!

Chloe: I love going to the shore! So much to do and see and eat and everything! One of my favorite things is to go to the Cape May Zoo - I was so glad that Grams wanted to take us.

Chloe: Oh, don't be that way - it's fun!

Amber: Isn't this supposed to be MY blessing weekend?

Chloe: You get a DAY, Amber. Not an entire weekend.

Amber: I wish I had been born first.

Amber: But then, I'd probably be the one doing this. Snort!

Chloe: Ah, the zoo was fun, but I was most excited to get to the beach! Aunt Diane and I love the beach!

Amber: I like cuddling better. At least this year.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Thursday, May 26, 2011

And Now... The Photos.

With the first baby, there are lots of perks. You take lots of photos at the baby shower and plan to show them to the baby when he or she is grown. Family members find heirlooms that they insist be passed on to the special new baby. Friends make photo albums and everyone gets super excited as the days count down to the baby's birth and future milestones.

And then you become pregnant with Miracle #2 and people shrug and go, "Oh, doing that again, huh?" and go about their day... which is why I am over the moon to report an incredibly cool thing that Amber got that Chloe didn't: a professional photographer at her christening.

Thanks to the generosity of the very talented (and awfully cute) Kevin Yoshimitsu, I have WONDERFUL photos to share with you!

Amber's Blessing...and A Philly Family's Odd Spiritual Journey

When Ed and I decided to get married, one of the most challenging decisions we faced was HOW to get married. We don't go to church (even rarely) and we don't share a faith. We wanted the ceremony to be inclusive of all our friends and family, so we didn't favor city hall and I wanted it to have a spiritual context of some sort... and we had no idea how to accomplish these (seemingly, at the time) conflicting goals.

Like all modern brides, I took to the internet. How people EVER planned a wedding without the world wide web is a mystery to me. Anyway, once a-surf, I discovered that plenty of people had our same problem and that there were many wonderful officiants who would didn't need the four walls of a church to marry us in a spiritual, familial way.

This is how we found the utterly marvelous Rev. Paula Legere. Rev. Paula helped us to craft the type of event that would welcome our loved ones into our marriage ceremony and share with them the role we hoped they would play. I was so pleased that during the reception and the days and weeks following our wedding, I was told repeatedly by friends how much they felt included in the ceremony and how much they enjoyed it.

After Chloe was born, we again turned to Rev. Paula to help us to craft a blessing ceremony that would once again hold true to our feelings about spirituality and involve those close to us. Once again, she helped us create a very memorable event that deeply touched those who attended.

So, now with my Littlest, we again reached out to Rev. Paula. As the mother of two girls very close in age, I'm conscious of wanting each child to be recognized in their own special way. Several things about this weekend's ceremony were similar to Chloe's: once again, we chose the beach for our setting; once again, we chose Diane and John to be Godparents to our baby girl; once again, Rev. Paula invited everyone present to offer their own blessings to our new baby. This time, though, we included different readings, new prayers, and a feature I loved: Rev. Paula asked those present to gather around us. The men placed one hand on Ed's shoulders and the women on mine and she asked that everyone understand that we understand that it does take a village. I remember standing on the beach and looking at Amber and Ed and Rev. Paula and the incredible ocean beyond and feeling utterly supported and loved and blessed by the presence of those who are so present in our lives.

Thank you to all who helped to make last Sunday one that I will always remember. In the next post, I'm going to share some very special photos from the weekend - I didn't want anything to distract from them, so they will be placed in their own post. :-)

In the meantime, I wanted to share with you the readings. These were read by the grandparents and the last one was read by me as it was one I felt very connected to when I was researching. Of course, we also had prayers, a parents' commitment and a godparents' commitment. It truly was a beautiful event.

“A Prayer Celebrating the Spirit of a Child” (Anonymous)

Give us the spirit of the child.
Give us the child who lives within - the child who trusts, the child who imagines, the child who sings, the child who receives without reservation, the child who gives without judgment.
Give us a child's eyes, that we may receive the beauty and freshness of this day like a sunrise.
Give us a child's ears, that we may hear the music of mythical times.
Give us a child's heart, that we may be filled with wonder and delight.
Give us a child's faith, that we may be cured of our cynicism.
Give us the spirit of the child, who is not afraid to need, who is not afraid to love.


“Blessing” (Anonymous)

Be true to those who trust thee,
Be pure for those who care.
Be strong, for there is much to suffer,
Be brave, for there is much to dare.
Be a friend to all – the foe, the friendless.
Be giving and forget the gift.
Be humble, for thou knowest thy weakness.
And then, look up and laugh and love and live.

Our Child (Zuri Indian poem)

Our child
Now this is the day.
Our child,
Into the daylight
You will go out standing.
Preparing for your day.

Our child, it is your day,
This day.
May your road be fulfilled.
May we live in your thoughts,
May we be the ones whom your thoughts will embrace,
May you help us all to finish our roads.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Adventuring at the Aquarium

Last weekend, Ed, Mom-Mom, Chloe, Amber and I piled into the car to visit the Adventure Aquarium in Camden and, as always, hilarity ensued. - Mommy

Chloe: Daddy and Mom-Mom said we were going to put 2 fingers each on the sharks. It sounded ok in the abstract. I was sure they meant PRETEND sharks.

Daddy and Mom-Mom are out of their damn minds if they think I'm putting 2 of my fingers on REAL sharks. Where's Mommy?

Amber: I can't see any sharks back here.


Amber: I can't see any penguins back here.

Chloe: I am the Queen of the Ocean. I will ride this turtle all the way to Sea Isle to see Aunt Diane.

Amber: I can't see any turtles back here.

Chloe: Daddy is a freak.

Amber: I don't need to see it to know you're right on this one.


Amber: You would think I couldn't comment since they didn't bring me in to the theatre, but you would be wrong. When the first 4-D effect happened, Mom-Mom said a bad word so loudly that the whole aquarium heard it.

Chloe: Here I am making a cool hippo out of sand and sea glass and shells!

Amber: I can't see a hippo, sand, sea glass or shells BACK.HERE.

Chloe: Wow. Between the sharks and the seahorses and the seals and the penguins and the fish and the crabs and the jellyfish and the turtles and everything else, I have to say that I love the aquarium! I love it!

This was awesome!

Amber: This sucked.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Amber's Movin' On Up

Amber: I totally rock at Tummy Time - I am SUPER BABY. But, Mommy and Daddy said that the Other One moved around more. Whatevs. Why should I move toward the toys when people will just give me more toys? GIVE ME MORE TOYS, PEOPLE. Where is my Lovey?

Amber: But, I do need to get more exercise so Mommy said I can start using this walker. Daddy brought it up from the basement and it's cool! I can move backwards, but not forewards yet. Who cares? There's nothing in front of me I need.


Chloe: All that working out can tax a baby. Man, this kid can be a handful, but look at her. How could I not share my monkey with her? She's our sweetest thing.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

I Like My Babies Extra Toasty... and Well-Fed

Check out the Bread Art Project , an online "studio and gallery" which supports Share Our Strength, a national nonprofit "committed to ending childhood hunger in America by connecting children with the nutritious food they need to lead healthy, active lives." On the site, you can create bread art and for each piece submitted and approved by June 30, the Grain Foods Foundation will donate $1 to Share our Strength.



Monday, May 9, 2011

Happy Mother's Day!

Amber: So, on Friday at school, they painted my foot pink and made me step on paper. What was that about?

Chloe: They did the same to me. Except I had to have my hand painted, too. I'm older.

Amber: Yeah. Rite of passage. What was it for, though?

Chloe (smugly): Well, BECAUSE I'm older, I know what it was for. Do you want me to tell you or are you going to keep up the 'tude?

Amber: In all honesty? Both.

Chloe: You're a pill. Anyway. The stamping was for the cards for Mommy. It's Mother's Day and it's nice to do something nice for Mommy on Mother's Day. So our teachers helped us make cards. Mommy said they made her so happy and she's going to keep them forever.

Amber: Oh, that is really nice. I'm glad all that tickling was heading somewhere good. You're right. It IS nice to do something nice for Mommy.

Chloe: Did you say I was RIGHT?

Amber: Don't get used to it.

Chloe: We celebrate other people on Mother's Day, too. Of course, we had brunch with Mom-Mom. She's Daddy's Mommy and our Grandmother.

Amber: I know who she is!

Chloe: Ok, who else did we celebrate?

Amber: I was asleep a lot.

Chloe: Yeah. We also sent presents and a card to Grams. I called her, too. She's Mommy's Mommy and our other Grandmother.

Amber: I know who Grams is!

Chloe: Sigh. Ok, Amber! You're smart. You're the smartest baby that ever lived. We're all in awe of you every day.

Amber (happily): I know.

Chloe: Then you should also know that we called and sent cards to Aunt JoJo and to Aunt Diane, our Godmother.

Amber: I was just about to say that.

Chloe: I'm sure you were.

Friday, May 6, 2011

"OHHH - Rice Cereal IS Food"

Chloe: Mommy has asked me to come congratulate you on the incredible accomplishment of having swallowed a combined total of 1 tablespoon of rice cereal. Go, you.

Amber: That tone is not attractive on you.

Chloe: Yeah, well, that spit up ain't so sweet on you, sister.

Amber: Call it even?

Chloe: Might as well.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

This Morning

This is such a weird angle, but it's a photo of Amber totally rocking her tummy time. She managed to spin 180 degrees. Hopefully the inchworm is coming soon!

Chloe cried when I put the Easter baskets away for next year - I think this is her way of holding on to the magic as long as she can. Come back, Easter Bunny!