31 March 2009

I was on the fence...

....but I think I'm going to homeschool. I just read a post about head lice. Icky, icky, icky.

Holy Cow. I'm exhausted.

Andrew will be home in 16 minutes and we're going to watch Slumdog Millionaire, so I have to make this fast.

Today was a long day. What did Lucy choose to challenge me on today? I'll make a short list.
  • Going backwards up the big kid slide at the playground
  • Not being allowed to beat people with a broom at Walmart
  • Not being allowed to buy "Kee-Kees" at Walmart
  • Having to come in the house
  • Having to go to bed
  • Eating dinner
  • Eating lunch
  • Eating anything
  • The fact that she had to participate in a mass evacuation of the bathtub after Molly pooped in it
  • Not being allowed to play with the germy toys at the pediatrician's office
  • The fact that she is not Molly's mother and is not allowed to feed her, dress her, undress her, pick her up, sit on her, roll on top of her, kiss her until she runs out of oxygen, wear her shoes or steal her blankets
  • Having to wear shoes at the doctor's office
I suppose I could go on all night, but I want pudding and time's a-wastin'. Tomorrow is Toddler Time and then Clarissa and Brian are coming over for dinner. That will be nice. It'll also be a good distraction for Herself. And her mother.

How on earth is it only Tuesday?

You know what? I AM going to write that book. Stay tuned.

A Waste of Wit

I should write a book. What on earth would I write about?

You see, being a stay-at-home mom is awesome. It truly is. I love being able to play in my jammies until noon, make playdates, go out to lunch with my girls, meet up with Andrew in the middle of the day, browse the library, you name it. Staying at home is super fun, even on the bad days. (This positivity could even be likened to a Percocet haze at the moment. Blame it on the naptime happies.)
However, people ask me what I do and I stare at them as if to say, "Wait, I've misplaced my adult brain. I...uhhh....well...oh, that's right. I change diapers and read books in funny voices."
Wouldn't it be nice to say something intelligent like, "Well, I'm so fortunate to be able to stay at home with them during the days and work on my writing at night. I'm about to publish my second book and I really couldn't ask for a nicer situation." See? THAT sounds nice. It also sounds like I could carry on a normal conversation like the well-educated Mensa member I'm reputed to be.
I think I'll write a book. How does one go about writing a book? Am I more interested in writing a book than vegetable gardening? I'm not sure. I think I'll take a nap like the fortunate stay-at-home-mom I am and think it over later.

Daddy Wins!

Molly Moo is 9lbs, 13oz and 22 inches long! 75th %ile for both! Give me a moment to personalize my Haiku...

He loves me so much
I'd love to kiss in free time
But children don't sleep

Pics from today will up later!

One Month!

Today is Mo's one-month checkup. Andrew is guessing 9lbs 15oz, I'm guessing 10 lbs 4oz. Nina is guessing 11lbs 3oz. Leave your guess here; winner gets a personalized Haikusday poem! Ha!
Mom says 10lbs 5oz.

30 March 2009

Happy Haikusday!

That's right, folks! The mind of Me has once again stunned and impressed the masses.

Welcome to....Haikusday! Haikus straight from Cooke House. Commentaries on life with untamed children. Art in it's finest form.

Lucy! Spit that out!
We don't eat plastic french fries
Zip-Loc'd. Safe windpipe

Not for human girls
Mommy too tired to care
Is it naptime yet?

Tulips from my sweet
Look! I haven't killed them yet
Better snap a pic

Defensive sleeper
Right jab for toddler sister
Left hook is for free

Little Miss Pigtails
Decided against hair cut
Locks too cute to lose


She smiled! And it was totally authentic and not gas. She did it four times and she was smiling at....ME! Ha. I am so awesome. And so is Molly.

Naptime Thoughts.

Here's what I don't get. Many of my friends and family are critical of sustainable living. Even the word "recycling" sends them into a fit of laughter. The term "reduce, reuse and recycle" doesn't send me into fits. It's calming to me. Do you know how wasteful we are as a country? It's so sad. The things we throw away could support a second family in other areas of this world. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle - this doesn't just mean turning off the lights when you leave the room.
  • Turn off the water when you're brushing your teeth.
  • Select "small load" on your washing machine; you'll only use less water.
  • Serve yourself half a portion.
  • Stop buying toys that use so much packaging and give your kids a cardboard box to play in. Their imaginations will thank you later.
  • Use the other side of your note paper.
  • Turn off the lights, period. The girls and I don't turn the lights on during the day unless it's actually dark in the room. If I'm not mistaken, natural light used to be a pretty common occurrence.
  • Save the other half of your lunch for tomorrow.
  • Drink a glass of (tap) water before you eat. You might actually HAVE half your lunch left over.
  • Buy local. It's not just cheaper and less wasteful; it builds community and gives you a sense of pride in the place you call home.
  • Accept hand-me-downs. Give hand-me-downs.
  • Stop being so prideful. Is it really so awful to watch TV on that same small set you've had for years? Do you REALLY need a flat-screen? Do you honestly need to DVR anything? Do you need two computers? Is a cell phone upgrade really necessary at the two-year mark? Do you want new shoes, or need new shoes? Couldn't you possibly use the same purse with multiple outfits?
  • Get outside and MOVE. We get out for walks whenever possible. That means we're not eating mindlessly in front of the TV, we're setting a good example for our kids, we're laughing and talking together and the house is dark. All very good things.
  • Put some clothes on and turn down the heat. I'm working on this one.
I'm driven insane by the fact that people are wasteful and thoughtless. There's something wrong with living in a world where you're cozy with a bowl of ice cream in front of the TV while your fellow humans in other places are starving and freezing.
Isn't a less wasteful lifestyle a moral matter than anything else? To be honest, I often question a person's values when I see the amount of stuff they have and the waste they perpetuate. Somewhere in the Bible, God gave us dominion over the Earth. What this means to me is that we not only control what we use, but how we use it and what we do with it when we're finished. Our Earth is a gift to us. Sure, some people really do take it a tad too far, but I'd rather they were putting their energy there than spending time rearranging their fantasy football lineup.

And now I'll step off my soapbox. (Which, was, of course, manufactured for another use. Pat on the back.)

29 March 2009

Striking similarities.

Do you ever see someone and think,

"I feel like I've seen that face somewhere before..."

Yeah, us too.

I deserve a medal.

I just cleaned the entire house. Tell me again why awesome women like me don't receive paychecks? A travesty. It even smells good in here, thanks to the power of scented candles and 409. 
Now, I have to clean out my dayplanner and continue with my weekend incredibleness. 

A Year Ago Today...

28 March 2009

Daddy's Girl

I only have two pictures of Andrew at the age Molly's at now, but BOY does Molly look like her daddy! I thought Lucy looked like him, but it turns out Lucy really does have more of her Mommy's looks and Molly is the spitting image of her Daddy. I'll have to do a comparison of Lucy and I at 2 years old. I really think you'd be shocked. 




I think these socks make Lucy look like Mr. Tumnus the Faun from TLWW...

27 March 2009

Update, y'all!

I'll post pics later, but for now, everyone is sleeping and I can actually type, so I'm going to make this as fast as possible.

Let's update, shall we?

Andrew: Andrew is sleeping. He had his tooth out this morning and was very brave. They gave him a truckload of pain pills. Seriously? I'm babying him today and have been running around cleaning the house and keeping the girls quiet. I think we might go out later and find something to do if he's feeling up to it.
School is going well, but he's having a disappointing semester. His capstone classes are far from challenging and are a huge waste of time, and it's upsetting to both of us that we've come this far and paid so much time and money only to find that FSU is under-par and mostly failing in the MBA program. He's getting through it, but the academic in him seems to really be mourning.
Work is good; they're keeping him busy and we're waiting to hear about a lot of things. With any luck things will continue to move along and we'll know something soon. He's working so hard and I'm so proud of the way he's balancing everything.

Lucy: She's such a nut. Her vocabulary is expanding by about 10-30 words a day and she's such a delight. She loves her little sister and is really doing everything she can to make Molly feel at home here. The toddler bed transition is going great and we're very proud of her. She's napping as I type this and I'm watching her eat something in her sleep. I mean, hands feeding herself and everything. This is hilarious.

Molly: Our little birds doing so well. She'll be one month old tomorrow and we're really starting to enjoy her more as she starts to get bigger and more expressive. Having a second baby is a little strange to us yet, but Molly is just so charming and sweet. She still has yet to do anything that resembles fussing, and I do mean that. Lucy was such a gruff little thing, and Molly just isn't ruffled by a thing. I was telling Mom this morning that I have absolutely no idea what soothes her because I haven't actually had to do that yet. Molly's just incredibly self-sufficient and secure. She sleeps at the right times, eats perfectly, only cries about every 4 days or so and is very alert and watchful. She's mastered nursing in the dark now and I don't even have to wake up to point her in the right direction.
Andrew and I can't wait for her to start smiling and responding more. The first few weeks of having a baby are always so strange. You wait and wait for this person to come out and charm you, and no one ever tells you that they really don't start doing that until later. Molly is still in the "baby lump" phase where she really just eats and sleeps, and when we look at Lucy with all of her tricks and craziness, it's hard to relate to both of them at once. I would say that adjusting to Molly has been 20 times easier than I expected, but I had forgotten how much new babies really don't do. I remember feeling this way right about now with Lucy, wondering when things would click and she'd truly feel like the baby we'd envisioned. I think she was about 6 or 8 weeks when she really started noticing us and feeling like "our" baby. What I'm loving about right now is that while Andrew and I are trying so hard to connect Molly to our life and we're searching for those things that make her "ours," Lucy has no idea that Molly is still a small stranger. She thinks that Molly just adores her. It's so cute watching her read to her, cook for her and talk to her and seeing Molly just sit there expressionless while Lucy feels nothing but love coming from her. I suppose that after cooking for plastic babies for so long, watching your sister punch herself in the face after she tastes your plastic corn must be very rewarding.

Laura: I am doing well. My recovery is going just swimmingly and I'm surprisingly much less hormonal that I was with Lucy. I guess I just have a better idea of how things should be going this time around. With Lucy I remember the baby blues hitting me hard right about this time, and with Molly, I'm just relieved that nothing's fallen apart at this point and that she has all of her limbs and major organs. Lucy keeps me busy and distracts me from feeling too nuts.
I can't wait to get out and exercise more. I took Maple out for a walk the other night and probably pushed myself too hard, but it felt so good to get out there! I can't wait to really start jogging and moving without feeling sore.
I'm adjusting well to having two kids instead of one. Getting everyone out of the house for errands was pretty intimidating at first, but it's getting easier as I get my system down better. We've done a couple of playdates and lots of shopping by now, and I'm still standing.
The nights are going well. We mostly have a system for most of the night, but things continue to fall apart right around 5am when everyone needs something all at once. What I need at 5am is sleep, but apparently the rest of the family needs milk at that time. No joke. Lucy wants cold milk, Molly wants my milk, Andrew wants to cry...it's bad. 5am is definitely the worst hour of the day in our home. But, we're managing. This too shall pass.

Well, Molly is grunting. If I don't get her now, she'll wake Lucy, who will howl and wake Andrew. And anyone who's ever nursed a husband back to health knows that a grown man in pain is always harder to care for than two children under two. :-) I love my babies, all three. :-)

26 March 2009

What a nice day.

It truly is, even though it's 7:20pm and I still haven't showered. Le sigh. 

Andrew and Lucy brought me tulips, we're having pilaf and cheddar biscuits for dinner and Andrew's off tomorrow. It's truly a fine, fine evening. And did I mention that tonight is Grey's Anatomy?! What a fine, fine evening. 

Oh, please pray for Andrew at 9am EST tomorrow. He's having a tooth pulled and is fairly dying at the thought. Let's pray that he survives. And that he stops referring to it as his "procedure."

25 March 2009

Shall I brag for a moment?

Lucy is getting to be a big girl now, but still likes to get in bed with us around 5:30, which we really don't mind, but until Molly is a bit bigger and can roll away from her, we don't want both girls in our bed at the same time. "Well, of course" you respond. 
So, we pulled out the coveted "Big Girl Bed" that we built before Molly's birth. At that time we told her that she was allowed to look at it, but she couldn't use it until she was "big." 
"Big" came earlier this week when we decided that "big" meant "big enough to kill your sister if you roll over on her in a dead sleep." We pushed her toddler bed up against ours and that became her spot in the mornings. It worked well enough, but Lucy really likes the toddler bed, so last night when she threw a fit, I let her sleep there all night. "My, how strong your parenting is" you respond. She went down without a tear and her night wakings were easy peasy to resolve. 
Well, that left us with a mess this morning. Do we 
a) put her in her crib tonight and pretend it never happened?
b) leave the toddler bed there and let her start doing full nights there?
c) move the toddler bed into her room and turn a new leaf by telling her she's just SO lucky that she can sleep in her big bed now and she doesn't have to try to squish into Mommy and Daddy's bed anymore? 

Well, being the stupid young parents we are, we chose C. And we chose C on a night where we whisked her in from the car, stuffed leftover lasagna into her and threw her in bed at 8:15. Nothing like good planning and preparation. 
I said to her, "Gosh Lucy, you're so lucky to have this nice big bed now! And if you wake up in the middle of the night, your crib is always right here if you need to move back in. (Her toddler bed is next to her empty crib for the time-being.) And you're so lucky that you don't have to sleep in our bed anymore! Whew! I was so worried that you'd have to sleep there for a long time since you weren't big yet. Aren't you glad you're big now and can sleep alone ALL night long?" 
She fell for it, hook, line and sinker. She jumped in her bed and said, "Yeah!" and passed out feeling very big and capable. We'll see how the night wakings go. I anticipate they'll be a tad more difficult than the "Big Girl" line I was feeding her earlier. 

But for now, my baby is in a big bed and sleeping peacefully with nary a fight or tear. So, so proud.

As you hug your healthy babies today...

...please pray for sweet baby Stellan who is very sick today. His button is on the side of my blog.

24 March 2009

Cute Lucy!

This afternoon, about 45 minutes ago, Lucy woke up from her nap and I told her to grab her shoes so we could go outside. We've had a nice group of guys working on the cemetery wall across the street and I knew she'd enjoy watching them while she played. 
She stepped out the front door and I said, "Hey, Luce, grab your chalk from the window and stay right here, ok? I'm going to clean out the car while you play, but you need to stay by the front door." 
She stood up and smiled and waved at me and said, "Okay! Ab hun!"

The guys across the street just cracked up, listening to Lucy telling me to have fun cleaning the car she's totally trashed since Molly was born. Somehow that kind of made cleaning the car fun. 

23 March 2009

Left to our own Devices.

Well, the company is all gone, the celebrating is over and we're settling in to our regular family-of-four routine. How did the girls reward all of my hard work and celebrate our entrance into independence?

They napped together today, for four hours. 

I love them. 

I would also like to take this moment to let the universe know that my kitchen in clean and my dishes are done, 24 hours after my mother has made her departure. Obviously I'm Superwoman. 

22 March 2009


I've learned something recently. Apparently there are women out there who "upgrade" their engagement rings. I had no idea this sort of thing existed until rather recently. 
I'm sure people have all sorts of reasons for doing this, but I don't think it's something I'd ever do. My own engagement ring is a 1/3 carat. My wedding band has another 4 diamonds surrounding it. When Andrew bought it, he knew that my love for diamonds is far-reaching and obsessive. It is. I can't help myself. They're sparkly. He loves to surprise me with diamonds and I love how beautiful they make me feel on a Wednesday morning in my pajamas. However, that wasn't the motivation behind the ring shopping. 
I had nothing to do with the ring-buying process. I didn't even know he was shopping around. As the story goes, he told the jeweler that I wore a size four ring and that he wanted the perfect ring in yellow gold. When he gave it to me, it was the perfect ring in yellow gold. 
I'm told that the average ring size is between a half carat and 1 carat. I suppose this has a lot to do with your place in life when you go ring shopping and all of that. When I look at my ring, a bit smaller than the average size, I think of how far we've come. I think of our meager beginnings, our first tiny apartment, job hunting into the hours of the night and finding out we were expecting Lucy far before we were prepared. When I look at that ring, It reminds me of our small love and how it's grown into a beautiful and vibrant family. It reminds me that a small diamond in yellow gold sparkles more than any rock in platinum when the giver is generous and admiring and the receiver is madly in love. 
Would I upgrade? No, I really don't think I would. With what I already have, what on earth would I upgrade to?

Born Of The Spirit

Today was sweet Molly Rose's baptism. It was a beautiful ceremony and both girls were angels. Molly looked so beautiful in her gown and Lucy was a very proud big sister. It was so wonderful having Molly baptized at Cook Chapel, where Andrew and I attended so many Masses together as a dating couple. There is nothing more wonderful than mixing nostalgia with the romance of new life and rebirth. How is it that God blessed us so much by giving us the chance to start our family here in the mountains we love? I don't know how long we'll be here, but we'll always have sweet memories of our first years together in our own little heaven. 

Daddy and Mo relaxing.

Skinny Minnie and her chicken legs.

Today was ALSO Paul's first communion! He was so proud and we're so proud of him! I can't believe our little baby brother is on his third sacrament...where does the time go?!

These pictures are not in any particular order - here's our little bird sacked out after a long day of Jesus and lasagna.

Lucy ten seconds from a Cousins and Cookies overload. She had a great day running around with the kids, and everyone left just in time for us to spend the evening with a toddler in tears.

Our family with Father Ed, our dear family friend and campus priest.

Molly's baptism. 

Molly and Grandma Cooke cuddling before the ceremony.

Our family at Cook Chapel.

Molly and her Godparents, Aunt Lisa and Uncle Michael.

All in all, it was a beautiful day full of love, family and friends and we're so happy to have reached another milestone for our little happy family. 

No sleep...no smiling...no hope.

Was the new parent haze this tough the last time around? I feel like we spend every night trying something new and hoping that it'll be better than the night before. I don't remember being up for an hour at a time in the middle of the night with Lucy. Of course, she was a pacifier baby. Molly's not really a fan.
Last night we introduced Lucy to her "big-girl" bed. She was so excited at the prospect of sleeping in it! We put her to bed in her crib and when she woke up to come to bed with us, she got in her big girl bed next to our bed and slept very peacefully for another couple of hours. She was very proud of herself! I think the full transition to a big girl bed will be great once we're all ready for it. Right now the toddler bed is next to ours because Molly is just too little to be in bed with Lucy because Lucy isn't aware of the baby. We love cuddling with Lucy in the mornings, but it's just too dangerous with a newborn. So, we're just trying to do what works. We also wanted to get Lucy used to her toddler bed, so this is a good way to get her moving in that direction. At this rate we might be out of the crib before Molly needs it!
Today is Molly's baptism. I'm going to pretty much zombie right through it, but I'm really excited. We'll be having our friends and family up to Cook Chapel, where we first started attending Mass as friends, then a dating couple, then an engaged couple, and now parents of two darling girls. I can't believe we've gone from linked pinkies in the front row to sippies cups under the pews. Life is just too good sometimes.

20 March 2009

Welcome To The Nursery

Really, what fun is a baby sister if you can't force her to have fun with you?? 

19 March 2009

Fan Club Meeting!

Lucy got these stickers for Christmas and decided today to make good use of them. She decided that each of us should wear one. Mama, Molly, Lucy and Baby Doll. Josiah has never been so prominently displayed! Can you tell she loves her cousin??

Thursday Catch-Up!

Well now, let's see...Molly is almost 3 weeks old and we've got a baptism coming up THIS weekend! Suz will be here tonight and we're planning to have an awesome extended weekend with her! 
Mom and the boys were here for almost week and we had a good visit. We also got LOTS done! We organized almost the entire house and I'm feeling good about being able to keep it all together for awhile. 
The girls are doing well. We took them for a walk last night and got all the way to Sheetz! Andrew gave Mo a bottle on the way home, so we didn't have to stop. I was a little sore today, only because walking is a different kind of activity that I've been getting lately. But it was nice to get out with my sweeties! Lucy had a blast and was so happy to get out in her stroller. The weather was just perfect and it was a nice way to wind down after a week of visitors. 
Today is our first official "on our own" day. Andrew is working a full day and the girls and I are going to hang around the house. I think we might just have a lazy one. We might go to the library. 
I'm healing up well and feeling great. Up until last night I was having a pretty major problem with the very end of my stitches and it was starting to look a little icky. It turns out that the knot and loop at the end just hadn't dissolved and it was starting to get pretty infected. So I decided to be brave and use my tweezers for good. I pulled the knot out and snipped it off, and today there is no swelling, no drainage and just a little bit of pink left. Whew. I was starting to really worry. It looks like I won't have to drive three hours to see my surgeon and the last of me healing is just about done! I don't think I'll even have a scar this time around. With Lucy it was really purple for a long time, but so far I have no coloring on my incision at all, so I think it's going to disappear shortly. 
Things with Andrew are going well. I think most people are up on our family news, so I'm not going to post the details on the internet. Just to update, things are moving along and we should have something to announce in the next few weeks or so. Thank you so much for your prayers and thoughts as we sort out out next step! Being married to Andrew is nothing if not an adventure! 
Well, I'm going to find some breakfast. Lucy just realized I'm not watching Sid with her, so my minutes are limited. I'll try to get some pictures today!

Here are some pictures of the girls playing after our walk last night!

My new favorite pic of our Mouse. She's just getting cuter by the day!

16 March 2009

Bad, Bad Blogger

I've been very busy this week, but wanted to get some pics up! I'll actually post a real post soon, but needed to get these new pics up! And, we'll be posting belly button pics tonight! Molly is now the proud owner of her very own belly button and it simply must be celebrated! 

Here is Lucy cooking corn for Molly. Lucy loves corn and she tries to share this love with everyone she knows.

I may have posted this before, but Lucy has become a real champ at entertaining herself since Molly's arrival. Here she is reading to herself. She's just such a little sweetie and has really been stepping up to the challenge of being a big girl!

Here is Lucy in a dress that I wore when I was a toddler. I think she's going to wear it for Easter, if I don't get my hiney in gear and find matching dresses for the girls!

Molly napping. Gosh she's a cute kid! I can't wait to see what she looks like in a few months! She's getting nice and chubby and is just eating like a horse.

Daddy and LuLu eating pasta Disney-style. Lucy thought this was just awesome. 

Molly-Mouse napping.

Lucy in her "spot," snoozing away. She hasn't napped in her crib in months, but she still takes a 2 or 3 hour nap daily! It just depends on where she crashes at 11am!

Lucy's first time dressing herself. We're hoping to teach her about tags in the near future. I personally like the backwards look...