My Baby is One!

A year ago right now, Sidney was already born, but just barely.  I was recovering from my third c-section, my dad was getting Riley and Adrian ready for school, and Shawn was in the nursery with our beautiful baby girl.

She still doesn’t have much hair, but she is even more beautiful now.

Now, in looking back on the past year, I am amazed by all that she has learned, all the many ways she melts my heart.  Now, at one, she is almost running, climbing up on couches, saying a few words like “diaper” and “bye, bye,” giving hugs and kisses, and trying, in so many ways, to be a big kid like her older brother and sister.

For me, maybe because she is the third, I feel like I have been able to just sit back and enjoy this year, watching her hit milestones, watching the three littles play and watch each other, watching her bright eyes take in the wide, wide world around her.  We’ve done a lot of cuddling, Sidney and I.  We’ve done a lot of roaring.  The girl doesn’t seem to know a food she doesn’t like, but she will be happy to scatter leftovers on the floor when she is done with dinner.  She’ll run away if she senses a clothing or diaper change on the horizon, and then come racing over to me as soon as I sit on the floor to crank out a sit-up or two.  She’s fiercely possessive of my lap at the moment.  She loves books and trucks and balls and blocks.  She’ll let you know when she wants more pretzels or when she wants to be held.  Sure, she still gets me up occasionally in the middle of the night, but honestly I don’t mind.  I like that time with her.  I like being around her, period.  She is lovable, playful, fierce, and brave.  Yes, of course, I am still in awe of her.  I think I will always be.

So today, we’ll have a Funfetti cake, we’ll sing happy birthday, and we’ll cover her in hugs and kisses.  Today is a good day.

Happy birthday, my sweet, sweet Sidney.

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The Short Version

Riley RAN a mile tonight.


Four laps around the track at the Y.


The Long Version

Her incentive was a monster cookie from Publix.  Gotta love extrinsic motivation.  She even got dressed in a tank top for the occasion.  We headed to the track after Kid-Watch and playground time at the YMCA.  We had to wait for Shawn to get done playing hockey.  Then he watched the littles while Riley and I took off for the first two laps.  She ran the majority of the time with a couple ten-second walking breaks.  But she never stopped moving.  And she never complained.  She just kept on trucking.  We held hands for part of our laps.  I told her a He-Man and She-Ra story for another part.  Then Shawn took over.  He even carried Adrian while jogging with her for half a lap.  Sidney and I cheered.  Riley finished with a sprint to the finish.  She did awesome!  Adrian and Sidney let her ride the stroller back to the car.  Tomorrow, we will head to Publix.

I think I will offer a monster cookie to myself if I pass my translation exam in Spanish at the end of the summer.  I need some motivation to keep studying.

And maybe I should give myself a monster cookie for completing the Javascript course in Code Academy.


Just kidding.

So, so proud of my little runner.

PS  Sidney is cutting a tooth!  Her first one.  That news seemed to fit this post, too.

Sid-tastic Says Hi

Just thought I’d celebrate Friday with some pictures of Sidney.  Yes, she’s mobile now…of the rolling and turning kind.  And she’s still a smiling chatterbox these days.  I am so spoiled to have three days a week at home with her.  Love it!  Enjoy the pictures!

Still Surviving Spring Semester (as the end grows near)

Right now, I have four and a half weeks of classes remaining in my second semester.  Exciting?  Yes.  Scary?  Yes.  While I know the middle of May will arrive and I will look back on this crazy time (fondly), that distant day seems hard to fathom right now.  So I thought it might be helpful for me to post about what I’ve done so far and what remains to be done in and out of the classroom.  I will post about Sid-tastic’s standing, too.  This has been her first semester of life, after all.

For Teaching

1.  22 classes taught.  Only 8 to go.

2.  2 of 3 papers assigned and graded.  Only 1 more paper and the portfolio to go.

3.  Student conferences – check.

For School Work

1.  5 of 7 fiction submissions (roughly 100 pages).  Another is due on Friday, and the last one will be due in two more weeks.

2.  2 of 3 rhetoric project class presentations (roughly 8 pages of writing and 1 Prezi).  The final one is due the last day of class.  Then, I also have to write a final paper.

3.  10 weeks of rhetoric readings, which includes 6 books and at least a dozen articles and selections of text that range from 12-40 pages each.  We have one more book-length assignment to go (Nicholas Carr’s The Shallows), and still plenty of other readings.  But I really enjoy these readings.  They make me think.  A lot.

4.  A prose poem draft.  I will probably submit this on Friday.

5.  Initial work on 2 revised pieces for my final fiction portfolio.  My final porfolio will probably be around 75 pages of fiction.  I’ve still got a long way to go.

6.  Register for summer and fall classes.

At Home

1.  Riley’s birthday party.  I’ve started to buy candy, we’ve reserved the place, and we’ve sent out invites.  Now we still need more candy, game stuff, decorations, snacks, cake, and drinks.  I do have a list, though.  At least Mom, Dad, Alli, and CE will be in town to help!!  Can’t wait!!

2. Upcoming doctor’s appointments for Riley and Sidney in April.

3.  Upcoming doctor’s appointment for me.

4.  House work.  We have been keeping up with the daily grind (or at least catching up on the weekends), but I am looking forward to doing some major catch-up in May (like going through closets, clothes, etc.).

5.  Cars.  Just got the RAV an oil change, but now the Tib needs one, and both cars are desperate for baths!  The plan is to take care of that this weekend!

Sidney, Sidney, Sidney

1.  Sleeping through the night (at least for the past three nights in a row).

2.  Rolling over from back to front.  Just happened this morning for the first time.  So exciting!

3.  Smiling and babbling up a storm.

4.  Hair growth?  Maybe?  Not really?  Hopefully one day.

5.  Gaining weight?  Absolutely.  She may catch Adrian before too long!  More pictures to come soon.

There.  That doesn’t look too bad, right?  It helps that I love what I do and my schedule and the material I’m working on.

Time to get back to it!

Friday Favorites

On my first blog, I sometimes used Fridays as a chance to share a little about me and reflect on the week by highlighting a few of my favorite things.  Why not kick off my first post the same way?

So here are some of my favorite things:

1.  Sid-tastic’s smiles.  She’s been super smiley this week, and I love a wide, gummy grin.

2. Pop-tarts, especially brown-sugar cinnamon ones.

3. Mad Men.  I have been powering through the episodes available on netflix.  I tried to watch it a while ago, and I couldn’t get into it.  Now I’m obsessed.  Donald Draper might be one of my all-time favorite characters.

4.  Donald Draper (but not all the time…sometimes I can’t stand him…but when he is good, he’s really good.

5. Peanut M&M’s.  They were on-sale at Kroger’s this week.  Yum.

6. Sixty degree weather in February.  It makes me a little sad that I’m not wearing my boots these days, but I can’t complain about the beautiful weather we’ve been having.

7.  Grandparent visits.  My parents stayed with us collectively for three weeks to help us get under our feet after Sid-tastic came along and watch her while I started back to school and teaching.  The time with them was terrific.

8. Steven Johnson’s Book Where Good Ideas Come From.  A fast and good read.  Had to read it for school, but I recommend it to anyone for pleasure, too.

9.  Kid pictures.  That other people with nice cameras take.  Christi Lopez is amazing.  She’s taken pictures of Riley and Adrian twice.  R and A also had some antique pictures taken at daycare.  They turned out so well!  The kids were super smiley!  My mom had a woman from her hospital take pictures of Sidney over Christmas.  The pictures are beautiful, and they make me so happy.  Now, if only I could put them all up all the time…:)

10. Five Guys Burgers and Fries.  That’s where we’re headed to for dinner tonight.  Best burger on the East Coast.

What are some of your favorites?  Feel free to leave me a comment and share yours!