Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Journal Your Christmas December 6th-9th

More Christmastime adventures are getting chronicled. Alexandra was so excited to help me decorate, and she delicately touched the more fragile items. She had so much fun running around the tree lot, too - lots of opportunities to hide & play peek-a-boo!

jyc 120612




Saturday, December 15, 2012

Journal Your Christmas December 1st - 5th

When December 1st rolled around, I had no clear idea what I would do for Shimelle's Journal Your Christmas album. This makes my 7th year, and although she was changing up the prompts (neat!), I wondered how much more I might have to say about my feelings on Christmas. The result is becoming a blend of a response to the journaling prompts and my inclusion of current photos. Since I don't print out my photos at home, don't want to wait to receive them from Shutterfly (where I usually get pictures printed), and it's a challenge to print them out at CVS with a toddler in tow ... well, pages are getting completed a little bit out of order, but that's okay by me. I am just glad they're getting done & in the future, Alexandra will have it to enjoy!






Thursday, December 13, 2012

slowly catching up to posting!

I have done a few layouts that I meant to post, but somehow the process of getting pictures of them and then transferring them to the computer etc .... wow! In other news, I am only 2 days behind on Journal Your Christmas & pretty happy with how the album is coming together. I haven't gotten a single picture OF the album, mind you (see? same problem as above), but at least it's getting done, and I'm having fun. And all of this despite the holiday season, having been sick for a week, and now having a sick toddler on my hands -- a minor miracle!

This one has no pictures, but was such a central part of our trip, I had to include the memory:
wishes come true

It's amazing what a little breeze can do to make things comfortable

This Cast Member's reaction was just so funny to witness
biggest fan

A more recent layout, highlighting Alexandra's gentle reaction to seeing butterflies for the first time
wave back

And another one for our WDW May 2011 album ... and it's complete!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Journal Your Christmas starts today

This makes the 7th year I've participated in Shimelle's Journal Your Christmas class. Although in recent years I often ignore the recommendations for topics, I still enjoy participating in the class & documenting our Christmas experiences. I am very excited for this holiday season & even though an early Thanksgiving should've given me an early start, here it is, December 1st, and I'm no closer to having my holiday themed supplies out for use than I was a month ago.

Today is a very busy day, with plans from 9 am to about 6 pm, with no opportunity to make any progress on my scrapbooking hoard or my plans for this year's journal. So, with no clue how it'll all come together, but with supreme confidence it will, I am just going to embark upon my day & see how things work out.

At least Alexandra provides no shortage of cute holiday photo ops.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Twirl factor is high!

A while back, I invested in 2 Disney themed dresses as part of a non-profit fundraiser and guessed on Alexandra's size for the spring. Well, she's growing faster than I thought she might! We tried on one dress, over her shirt & it is a snug fit! The funny part - once I got the dress on her, she didn't want to take it off!! She twirled around and around, watching the skirt flare out in the big mirrored doors. With such a gleeful expression, I had to take some pictures. Unfortunately, the background's not very photogenic --- but she sure is!



Sunday, November 11, 2012


For Halloween, Alexandra was a dragon this year. And a cute one, too, if I do say so myself.

If you ask her to say "dragon," she response with a little roar!

The costume worked out great & kept her nice and toasty on 2 chilly Halloween outings!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

more paper adventuring

It looks like the risk for malware from a related site is now down to zero, so I can post & can read my own blog again. (For those of you who didn't have Google sending warnings, I suggest a virus scan. Apparently one of the adoption blogs I mentioned on here about 2-3 years ago had been infected, so I was getting warnings when I would try to look at my own blog. Still can't actually FIND a post where it's mentioned, mind you, so there's that whole conundrum!)

I have been doing some more scrapbooking - trying to catch up on our May 2011 Disney trip & also to do pages related to more current events. I still have 2 vacation albums to do for this year as well. ACK.

baby love

so characteristic

all grins

snow melt

green eggs and ham

swimming fun

fishy adventures

our sandals

you now

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Short hair, not by choice

Yes, I had Alexandra's hair cut ridiculously short.

I did not do it because I wanted it short. I did it because we deemed it necessary.

Truth be told, Alexandra's had significant amounts of hair since the day she was born. It just got lighter in hue and longer. It was well on its way to developing into thick curly locks - the kind of hair I've always wanted. So, you must be asking yourself why we did it. The answer is simple: she had tugged out about 1/5th of the hair on her head, all on the right side.

Yup. Just slowly kept plucking hairs, out of boredom. She'd be waiting for food ... or be in her car seat after dropping a toy ... or be in her crib after jettisoning all of her toys overboard, and with nothing else to do, she'd absentmindedly (I say this because when we would draw her attention to it, she'd startle a bit & stop immediately) pick hairs & twist them around her fingers.

It could be the start of tricotillomania, or it could be a phase. Either way, having lengths of hair ranging from 1/2" to 4" was really pretty lopsided. We had to start going to great lengths to "get her good side" in photographs. And on windy days, it looked like she either was wearing a poorly attached toupee or she was going through chemo.

So, my stylist tried a couple of things, but in the end, we determined the best course of action was to make it the same length, so the least common denominator reigned supreme and her hair was down to about 1/2" all over.

I miss the curls. And I have had many people comment on the fact they miss them, too. There seems to be some degree of admonishment, that as a parent I have made a horrible decision. It is HAIR people. She is 19 months old. We'll just see what happens as it grows back in, okay?

I think most people are reacting because they have no memory of her being without lots of hair. Many strangers believe she's a boy, and I don't usually correct them. Let them treat her like a boy. Doesn't that expose her to different experiences than she might already have. Most of her wardrobe is hand-me-downs, and among them are boys' clothes. (How does one tell girl-overalls apart from boy-overalls, anyway??)

So, although the short hair wasn't my preference, I am embracing the new opportunities it affords us. It also gives us a good reason, in this colder season, to trot out hats. And now that she doesn't have thick, wavy hair, the hats actually stay on, which is a huge bonus.


Does she look different? Certainly. Is she any less beautiful to me? Nope. Now, without the longer hair, you can easily see her cheekbones, her eyes, and her cute little ears. You can even see a little swirl shape on the top of her head.

I dare you to tell me she's not cute.


Wednesday, September 12, 2012

12 on the 12th

So I am trying to keep up with monthly pages for Alexandra - 12 photos on the 12th of every month. It was kind of a rocky start -- but I am working on it!

March 12 of 12

April 12 of 12

May 12 2012

June 12 2012

Monday, September 3, 2012

More scrapbooking pages now that I have tamed my stack of random supplies and photos. It took me a while to corral everything & to remember what my intentions were in printing things out or setting supplies aside. I have a LOT of catching up to do!

Another page for our May 2011 Disney album
all tired out

This one uses photos from January 2012

And some of my favorite pictures from May 2011 Disney trip - Snow White was quite taken with her!

Sunday, September 2, 2012

The Odd Life of Timothy Green

So, we just got back from watching The Odd Life of Timothy Green. I am glad I put tissues in my purse. We both needed them.

The film captured so many moments that we experienced as hopeful parents - the realization we were not going to have biological offspring - the ache upon seeing a happy child with a parent and wondering if that would ever be us - the opening of our hearts to wishing & knowing it would cause pain but we had to do it anyway, and the hoping-against-hope that this child was really and truly ours.

We cried at the beginning ... and we reached out for each other to hold hands and squeeze tight when there were moments we knew all too well. We sobbed at the end, feeling an echo of the broken heart ... and then cried again when the story came to its completion.

On the drive home, I confided that I really do very much want a 2nd child. For so many reasons, but the one so well demonstrated in the film - because I have enough love to share. We have enough of many things a child needs to grow into a fantastic being. I don't know how we can make it happen, but I'll keep holding the idea in my heart.

I read a quote somewhere that said something like, "If you dream of something every day, don't give up." One of the qualities Joe and Cindy wanted for Timothy was for him to never give up ... and in the end, that's what he taught them. So, I will wait and be poised for a 2nd dream to come true.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Scrapbooking (and life) resumes ...

My scrapbooking is resuming, so hopefully that means that life is getting "back to normal", whatever that might be. I had to dig out everything on my desk & in various cubby-holes to try and figure out just what the hell I was trying to do when I left off. When I got around to putting completed layouts into albums, I found out, I did a page about her first time in the pool  .... and that I had already done a page on the subject. *face palm* So, past time to be more organized. Then again, I managed to lose track of the 8x8 page protectors I had in plain sight for months ... and I promptly spent a half an hour trying to find them today. So, organizing's not all it's cracked up to be. So, here are a few pages I've done in the last month or so.

NOT the first time in the pool ... but it can't hurt to document her love of water, can it?
H2O baby

t i double g r
ti double g r

Cute girl going Christmas tree shopping
our tree

[Cookies] mmm

Doing this page reminded me of how tacky I feel bright colors look. I won't do it again for a while.
learn to swim

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Why yes, we had a fantastic time on vacation


We had a fantastic time on vacation. I absorbed it through my pores. We now know that we were all suffering with bronchitis while we were down there, but being ill did little to diminish our enthusiasm for this tropical paradise. Some people come back from vacation & just 48 hours say "wow, it feels like I never went on vacation." I am not those people.

My skin is partially tan, which is a rarity to me. We are awash in lovely photos of our journey, including some taken by many family members. We can see the experience through a variety of perspectives, which is extra special.

Do I want to plan our next vacation? Hells yeah. (I didn't used to say that until I watched an episode of  Common Law, and now I am using it all the time. Go figure.) Do I feel pretty damned rested & content? Yup. I am looking forward to my health being at 100%, but in the meantime, I'll take a wonderful week with family in a place that is not only special to my heart, but just breathtakingly beautiful to boot.


Sunday, August 12, 2012

Vacation, courtesy of Dad

Back from a delightful vacation, courtesy of my fantastic dad, who you see above. Dad has some major problems with his eyes, which means he spends a large portion of the day with his eyes patched, and he wears dark glasses very frequently as well. He had a heart attack last July and "coded," which I think, in part, prompted him to want us to all get together at one of our favorite vacation spots in the world, down in the US Virgin Islands. He had hernia surgery in May, but was a real trooper & healed up well enough to go. His idea started with 9 of us -- the 5 you see above, plus my brother's family of 4. It expanded to include many extended family & our group ballooned to 25 people!

As many of you know, my daughter is a water baby, so she was delighted to experience the ocean. My dad has, because of his eye issues, been cautioned against getting pool or ocean water splashed into his eyes, so he's never been in the water with her, just watched from the sidelines. Add in the fact that his eyesight is poor & his core muscles are weak from surgery ... and enjoy the photo below. I sure do.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Ups and downs. But mostly ups.

Alexandra's been teething all day. That means she's been clingy & subdued, easily brought to tears. Still, on a scale of 1-100, with 1 being totally chill and 100 being freaked out to the max, she's at about a 20. So, there's that.

Hot water heater has been replaced. Carpet downstairs was steam-cleaned while my sweetie was off work because of his cough (sent home because his cough was annoying, not because he's infectious ... which I think is crazy). The spot the tree punched through has been thoroughly fixed, and our walls are now Tide Pools pale-blue-green, which is very calming and satisfying.

I am still horrendously behind, but at least I can sleep a little bit better. Yay for improvements. I am going to read a chapter in my book & then hopefully slip into blissful unconsciousness. Yay for unconsciousness.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Jane, get me off this crazy thing

In the latest installment of drama, I have post-infection lung inflammation & our hot water heater has stopped working.

Are you freakin' kidding me?

I want a do-over of the whole summer. It feels like since Mother's Day it's been weeks of being sick (I've counted them -- I was sick for 8 of them, out of 10) combined with random disruptive nonsense.

And don't get me started about the funny clank/screech/grind noise the car seems to make when braking while turning. The car was brand new in March of 2010 ... it's only 2 1/2 years old! I am afraid to event take it in.

And in the style of J.K. Rowling, The News That Cannot Be Spoken Aloud should have my sweetie scrambling to look through job postings, but instead he is playing Skyrim. I am using just about every stress management skill in the book & they're wearing a bit thin. *sigh*

The good news, though, is that my dad is fantastic & he's covering the costs for a delightful family reunion, so I have that to look forward to. I have little doubt I'll return from the experience rejuvenated and rested. And Alexandra is a delight each and every day. Even today, which began wonderfully & rapidly spiraled out of control. She tolerated a 2+ hour delay in both lunch and naptime. I count myself impressed. She understands the concept of "wait," and knows that we do all we can to meet her needs. I love her.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Overdue Walt Disney World pictures

So with the tree falling through our house (repairs still not yet complete, by the way, but at least siding & gutters are up so no rain falls INTO the house), things have been in upheaval. I'm still recovering from yet another virus (sleep deprivation leaves me wide open for these things), but I am determined to beat it in the next week.

On to happier thoughts, like our trip to Walt Disney World this past May. We didn't take as many pictures as we often do - some trips topped 4,000 pictures - but we did take a lot (about 2,000). I have selected some of my favorites for your viewing pleasure here:




(by way of explanation, the above photo was when Tigger copied Alexandra by tapping his paws on the table, and she copied him back, and it was a great game. Lots of blur, because they were in constant motion!)




(Alexandra's first haircut was done at Disney ... and right afterwards, she went to see Mickey Mouse in her new hat. Did I mention she took her first independent step on the 19th of May, then toddled all by herself to Mickey on the 21st? Brilliant timing little girl!)