30 August 2009

From the mouths of babes...

Anyone who's seen Lucy in the past few weeks knows that she's a nonstop chatterbox and she's a complete riot. She says the funniest things and tonight at church she had me in stitches as she was whispering things to me in her "church voice."
She started playing with my necklace and said, "This is pretty!" I said, "Yep, that's my special necklace from Daddy." She smiled and replied, "Oooooh...he's a gentleman, huh?"

Of all the things she says, though, my favorite would have to be "It makes-a me happy!" Lucy has got to be the smiliest, most relaxed kid in the world, and just about everything makes her happy.

While Lucy is cute and has lots of funny things to say, I'd have to say that her little buddy Michael topped her this week. Michael is 3 and he's got to be the cutest little thing ever. He has this floppy blond hair and huge brown cow eyes - just a little heartbreaker. He and a bunch of his siblings came over to play on Friday and spent the day drinking chocolate milk, chasing each other around and playing with the girls. When his mom asked his what the best part of his visit to Lucy's was, can you even imagine what he said?

"When Mrs. C smiled at me."

Like I said. Heartbreaker.

29 August 2009

Peace is Wonderful

Lucy fell asleep at 5:30. I'll pay for it in the morning, I'm sure, but in the meantime I'm going to enjoy the quiet. Andrew took Mo out for a walk in the backpack, so things around here are perfectly peaceful.

So, yes, we're moving to Cowtown. I'm really, really excited. True, we just unpacked here at the farm, but I'll just think of it as a summer home and move on. We're going to be getting rid of a LOT of furniture and stuff and taking this move as an opportunity to really start fresh and have some great adventures. This was a totally unexpected move and we've only known of it for the past few weeks. We got a call on a Thursday and had the interview on that following Monday, followed by a job offer on that Wednesday. It's been a complete whirlwind, but we're excited about this next step. Andrew would never publicly admit it, but it's a great career opportunity for him and he's really excited about the stuff he'll be working on and the things he'll be learning. I'm so proud of this big post-MBA jump and I feel like he's really coming into his own where his work is concerned.

Tomorrow we're showing the farmhouse to a couple of people in the hopes that we can help our landlord get someone in here as soon as possible. I'm almost positive that one of the two will want it, as everyone who saw it on the last round asked to rent it. It's a really fun place with so much space to spread out and have fun.

I suppose I really don't have to add here how relieved I am that our house sold itself last month and we're free and clear. God really does work in mysterious ways, doesn't He? We're in the process of house-hunting out in Fort Worth and we're hoping to find a nice, newer place with a little bit of extra space for the girls. It seems like the houses are REALLY small there, from what we've seen. Maybe that just has to do with keeping the houses a bit smaller to keep them cool. I have no idea. It seems like the square footage is lacking in most of the places we're seeing online, so I'll be anxious to see what an agent can tell us. Andrew has a meeting with his relocation person on Monday, so we'll know more then about going out for a home-finding trip in the next couple of weeks.

Lucy is really excited about "Texas," even though she has no idea what Texas is. I'm a little nervous about having to move her again so soon. I have absolutely no signs that it will be difficult, as she's a breeze to do just about anything with, but I feel bad uprooting her just as she's realizing that the farmhouse is home. She's been back and forth and East and West so many times this summer that she just HAS to be a little confused and exhausted. She's been nothing but an angel about the entire thing. Lucy is by far the sweetest and most patient kid I've ever met. She loves to just go and go and go and is always so amiable and willing to please. I'm going to do everything I can to make sure that this move is all about HER. Andrew and I have always tried so hard to make our marriage and our parenting run neck and neck, but we really do need to put Lucy and Molly first through all of this. Molly is a little dream and I'm SO glad that we're moving two and not one. Lucy really looks to Molly for routine now and they're becoming friends so fast. I never really realized how important it was for kids to have siblings until I saw the calming effect Molly has on Lucy. "Safety in numbers," as they say. I think it'll be nice to have an "extra" along in Molly as the three of us get our bearings in a new city. Molly is frequently our comic relief and she's endlessly entertaining for all of us. I'm so glad we have her. What a peach.

Well, I should get back to my porch sweeping. Our first visitor will be here around noon tomorrow, so we need to get this place looking awesome and homey! We'll keep you updated!

location, clarification & timeframe.

Fort Worth, for all those wondering where (or generally where) in the lone star state we'll be moving to.

AND... we've had lots of "I'm coming to visit", especially in the Oct - Feb timeframe. To which, we've mostly replied "Awesome. We'd love to have you." This response is SINCERE! We love company and tickets the last time we flew down for the interview were only ~$250/roundtrip BALTIMORE/DFW on priceline.com.

SO, for all of you available & seriously interested... COME DOWN! :-)

AND, Andrew (me) will be down there beginning 9/14/2009. Laura & Co. will be coming down for that week and returning to Baltimore to stay with the Cookes/Merkels until Kevin & Christines awesome wedding early Oct. At which time, Andrew will be flying in for the wedding and taking the ladies down to FTW.

That's the plan! It's going to be quite an adventure........

random spudgy moment...

I feel this tired today. Especially after the car wreck aftermath (some LaVale teenagers, no Cooke's involved) that I just helped a little with :-/


Molly is 6 months old... yikes. When'd that happen??? She's kind of crawling but it's more like LEAP FROGGING! She CAN pull herself up to a sitting position (which is WAY before her sister Lucy had that kind of control!)... We're in trouble with this one.

Anyways, the girls were able to accompany me on my training in DC this past week. It was fantastic. Laura & her family took a day to run around and look at museums and such. One evening we walked over to Georgetown and ate at Clydes and had some delicious Georgetown Cupcakes!

Here are some pics. To see, save or download them larger, click on 'em!

28 August 2009

Moving to Texas!

We're moving, y'all! I'll post more about this whole mess of moving and the recent chaos that is our life later. For now, I have to clean up the house and get ready for a playdate with J and her 7 cherubs. Michael J + Mac-n-cheese = heaven for Lucy. (Truth be told, she thought I was talking about Uncle Michael all morning and is now totally bummed that Uncle Michael is (insert howl here) "2 HOURS AWAY!")
Well, pics from our big DC trip coming later. For now it's naptime and shower time!

24 August 2009


Well, this isn't THE exciting news, but it IS exciting, nonetheless! On August 7th, 2009, Andrew's MBA degree was officially approved! He should receive his paper degree in a few weeks and that puppy's going to be framed immediately!

Congratulations, Andrew! The girls and I are so very, very proud of your years of hard work and your dedication to giving us a secure life full of opportunities. Your accomplishments never go unnoticed by Lucy, Molly and I and we're so proud to call you our Husband and Daddy.


In DC this week!

Hi All! I'll be back to posting on Friday or Saturday- Andrew is in DC for a class this week, so the ladies and I are visiting family and then heading down tomorrow to hang out with him and see the museums for a couple of days.
Everything else is going well. I should have something exciting to tell you the next time I blog!

21 August 2009

Motherly Pride!

So, Molly is doing a fabulous job of going to bed by herself! She slept a straight 8 hour stretch last night before waking to eat at 3:30, and THEN she put herself down for a nap in her crib today. I'm SO proud of Poppers and her wonderful transition to solitary sleeping.

Here are some pictures of her last "untamed" naps. These were all taken yesterday. She's so cute I could die.

20 August 2009

Hey Y'all, Guess What??

Lucy and Molly are going to be a Cowgirl and a Horse for Halloween. Can you guess why?

19 August 2009

Are You Kidding Me?

What a little booger.

Today I decided that although I love sleeping with my youngest little sweetie, it's time to take back the bed and put her in her own crib. Let me preface this by saying that Molly has yet to sleep a full night in her own bed, period. Lucy never slept with us, but was up all night. Molly sleeps right at my side, all night long. So it's really not a matter of "if she can do it" because I know for a fact that she's not really eating at night anymore.
So tonight Lucy and I put on our game faces and started Molly on the Great Sleep Routine. We washed her, lotioned her, fed her and pacified her, preparing for a big, bad battle. I nursed her for a few minutes in her room and put her in her bed and walked out, shutting the door behind me. With little more than a moan and a couple of squeaks, she's in there, presumably trying to settle down and sleep alone. Every other time I've put her in a bed by herself, she comes unglued. Tonight, she pulls a Classic Lucy and lies through her gums about what a piece of cake this is going to be. Lucy did this at exactly the same age, leaving me to think it was going to be smooth sailing. I know better this time, Molly Rose.
I'll keep you updated.

Poppers chewing on her first crust of pizza, Chicago O'Hare Airport Gate c29, yesterday.

Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity Jig!

And BOY do we need groceries...I also need to figure out what I'd be paying for my cell phone plan if I upgraded to an iPhone. I also need to unpack, do laundry, clean the house, feed the children, get the mail and make dinner. I think it'll be a relatively quiet day, and I really do feel bad making the girls head out to shop, but it's a must!
I'll post pictures tonight! We had a fabulous trip and even though we got in terribly late last night, it was definitely worth it! We can't wait to share all the details with you fools!

16 August 2009

We're Here!

"But where is here?" you ask. Well, it's still a secret. Andrew will be here this afternoon and the fun will really begin, y'all!
Molly was a fantastic traveler and we had the kind of trip one only dreams about. Everyone was absurdly friendly and nice and we arrived feeling just charmed. We met the most interesting girl on the plane and it was just fate that she should sit next to us. She was coming home from a visit to Ethiopia and was the picture of hospitality and warmth as Mo and I enjoyed our first trip together. Molly had fun with our new friend and we hope to see her again soon. Funny how God inserts the right people into your life at the right time. I think I'll facebook her. I mean, isn't everyone on Facebook?
We just finished a plate of ten dollar french toast and are going to look for the pool and see what we find. It's a tad warm in this neck of the woods, so I think we'll do the pool this morning before it gets too hot, if we do it at all. We had a lovely night in a big, soft king bed. Molly slept straight through and woke up smiley, so today should be a fabu day. As if she wakes up any other way...
Well, I've wasted enough time in the "business center." Molly is very happy watching the automatic doors, so I think I'll check in with my regular sites and head upstairs before she starts to freak.
I miss Lucy terribly. I think I'll call her this morning, as if she'd really say anything on the phone. :-)

13 August 2009

Fun at Gabe's!

The gals and I went out today for a bit of shopping therapy. We bought fake apples, flashcards, placemats, headphones and tshirts! I'm seriously in love with my new placemats!

My new placemats are part of a new scheme! Stay tuned!

Oh, also, I'm going on a trip this weekend! Can anyone guess where I'm going?
Here are 3 hints:
  • Lucy will be with Grandma and Grandpa for 3 days.
  • Molly will probably sleep most of the way.
  • I plan on eating awesome food.

She's Ours!

As of today, Molly is officially ours! I just paid off her hospital bill and now we get to keep her! Hooray! I also paid my OB bill, so I suppose I get to keep my uterus as well. A very good day!

How Very Blessed

Do you have any idea just how blessed you are? As you read these words, someone out there loves you. And needs you. And wishes they could see your smile. Such a powerful, healing and simple thought, isn't it?

What's going wrong today?

Okay. Now what's REALLY going wrong today? I thought as much.

Molly has been such a little cranky pants for the past two days. But, oh, that loud, crazy cry. I love hearing it. I really do. A big, noisy sign of life in a little girl who thinks her life is crumbling.

Lucy is 2 and a half, and she's into everything. but every single exasperating thing she does is followed up with a contrite "I'm sorry, Mommy!" and a big smile. There's absolutely nothing she could do to keep me from loving her from head to toe for just about every minute of the day.

Andrew is physically incapable of picking up his laundry. I know it's because his arms were tragically lost, but...wait. What?? He still has his arms?? Hm. Very interesting. I suppose it could be worse. I'd rather lie in bed with him at night knowing his clothes are all over the floor than sleep alone.

Grandma is about to go into surgery. I'm such a mess of worry and fear, but I suppose I know deep down that she's safely in God's hands. Last night I went to the theater and saw Julie and Julia alone. It was so nice. At one point, Meryl Streep as Julia Child pulled out a set of metal measuring cups, just like Grandma's. Grandma's measuring cups are so dented and old, but every time I see them I get a big whoosh of memory and love. Memories of sitting under the pull-out cutting board, kneading bread and drinking milk out of the measuring cups. The milk would make the metal so cold and it tasted ten times better out of those measuring cups. I don't know what Grandma thinks of when she pulls them out. She probably just measures. What I wouldn't give for another drink of milk right now. I wish I could make cookies with Grandma right now. I think I might fly out there soon and do that. She's been in the hospital for a couple weeks now and it stinks because I can't just dial her up and chat. Soon enough, she'll be home again and I can make that call.

I looooove Thursdays!

Here are a few random pics from teh last few weeks!

12 August 2009

3am, y'all!

So...Molly and I are watching Baby Einstein and hanging out. We have a teething baby who just doesn't want to nurse, folks. So I guess we'll just hang out in the living room and enjoy the fruits of Disney's labors.
I am super tired. This is the first time I've been up with Molly at night and I'm feeling incredibly resentful. How dare she? I'm pretty spoiled, I guess. I always read blog posts about people sitting up in the middle of the night with their kids and that my lucky stars that it's not me. Now you can do the same! I guess I'll just call Andrew in after the one-hour mark and see if we can't trade places for a bit...
Mom is in Washington now. I just got her text, so I will be praying for a safe and successful visit with Grandma and Grandpa. Hopefully we'll be hearing some good news very soon. Well fellow sleep-lovers, I'm going to go. The night is young and I have an infant to party with.

11 August 2009

Party Time!

My beloved Andrew had a birthday last week, and I threw a big, fun party to celebrate! It was wonderful having so much space for people to wander, visit, eat, play and laugh together, and I know it'll be our best Summer '09 memory.

This pic os Lucy was in the batch and it was too cute not to include. I sure love this little angel. She's just such a well-behaved, funny, talkative, amiable girl. Her vocabulary is just booming and she says the craziest things. She listens very well and two and a half is treating us well. She recently learned the word "why?" and I have no idea what to do with that.

Here is Lucy on Friday night, reading a bedtime story to the cows. No joke! She actually said, "Listen, cows!" and told them all about Baby Mickey and his friends. They seemed to love it.

Christian and Lucy playing with chalk in the dark!

Calvin and Katherine got in very late on Friday night and by Saturday morning Lucy had affixed herself to Katherine's side and was very happy to finish her nap in K's lap.

She finished the final wake-up on my lap.

Calvin hung out with his best little baby, Miss Poppers. This is her supermodel pose.

The boys decorated the cookies and did a fabulous job!

Julie even came along for the fun and she had a blast wandering around outside.

Pretty Katherine!

My handsome honeybun.

Mo and PaPa!

So terribly cute after 3 blissful years of married life!

Grandpa feeding Molly!

Sweet Lydia's first pigtails!

Relaxing with Grandpa!

Once the party got into full swing, I put the camera down to have fun and visit! It was a fabulous time and we talked and played and visited long into the night. Can't wait for Cooketoberfest!