Treading Water

We have been in this almost-surreal state lately. Awful things have been happening, great things have been happening, and big things loom that have us stuck in a weird holding pattern.

Remember how we lost my Great Uncle Mark in February? Well, we lost not only Andy’s grandpa to a stroke in March but then in a staggering turn of events lost Andy’s aunt to cancer last week. Not even a week ago now. We’d seen her at the funeral seemingly her normal, albeit grieving, self and a few weeks later she was gone. It’s the sort of thing that makes all your edges raw. We are left almost fizzing with residual anxiety in an anything-could-happen sort of way.

Meanwhile, life in the North is simply beautiful. The weather is warming, trees are greening, things are blooming. We exhaust ourselves on the weekend making our landscaping home-y and beautiful while the boys run around finding sticks and digging holes in our yard to try and outdo each other finding the biggest, fattest earthworms.

Graham planted peas in the back garden this year. There are lots of things sprouting where we planted them, but we’re not sure which are peas and which are weeds, so it’s a garden free-for-all back there until the plants are big enough to determine which to keep and which to pull.

I’ve been on the road the past two weeks doing some intensive research with consumer focus groups. Andy’s been holding down the fort with the boys. I think it’s safe to say: we’re all glad that I’m going to be home for awhile.

Lastly, we are in a holding pattern on everything else until we figure out what’s going on with my job. My company is merging with another in a big deal that is sure to mean changes and soon. The deal doesn’t go through until the end of the year, but everyone at work is on edge about it.

In fact, we have our current CEO and COO visiting our little headquarters site next Monday morning for a 30-minute town hall meeting. The CEO has never been here, so everyone is left wondering why visit? Why now? It has the hallmarks of “big announcement” but it also could just be… “The CEO’s never been here and wanted to see the place” kinda stuff. Who knows.

That’s just sort of the mantra at work right now: “It could be huge, but it could be nothing.” Go about your lives. We’ll let you know if something changes.

So we are. Going about our lives, pretending nothing is over our shoulders. Planning camping trips and chasing each other around with big fat earthworms. Because what else are you going to do?

Signs of Life

I stayed up late watching the Oscars tonight. For once, Andy actually went to bed before I did. Unprecedented.

He asked me to do a couple of things before I came up: put the dog to bed and leave the basement door open (to keep our heat a little more even.) One thing he notably didn’t do or ask me to do was tidy up.

So I did what any red blooded American mom would do: I completed the two requests and headed for bed. But before shutting off the lights, I started to notice the little signs of life around me. Remnants of my little boys’ collective day.


A rocketship with no spaceman.



A rubber snake, a toy truck.


This shoe.


That shoe. (Or, as Baby Reid pronounces it: “shh-thbthpbthhthh”)


Two balls and Graham’s cop car.


A Spider-Man balloon that may just never come down. Until Andy or I get annoyed enough to pull it off the ceiling. Which we obviously haven’t.


A new pair of binoculars and a spiky ball that expands and contracts.

I can still hear the laughter and thumps of heavy-limbed boys chasing each other around the house. Still hear the screams and tears of fights that happened over nothing in particular except that they’re brothers and that’s what they do.

They are exhausting but I love it.

Tonight I left this stuff around because in 7 short hours, two little guys are going to be heading downstairs to pick up where they leave off. And tomorrow morning it will be exactly where they remember leaving it.

Just this once. :)

Illin’ Like a Villain

I think this story starts back in January when Reid got a stomach bug, and Graham and I opted not to travel to Illinois to see baby Grace. I’m not 100% sure, but close enough. Reid’s really been a virus hog this winter. Just greedily building immunity to every strain of virus he can find.

For those of you other daycare parents out there, we’re in the phase of constantly wiping noses, never sure if this particular cold is the same cold he’s had for awhile or a new cold. It’s great. (Sidenote: Graham did this starting at four months and was this way until 15-18 months. We really got a late start with Reid.)

Anyway, shortly after that missed trip, I visited Jodi and Ben in DC and came home with a cold. Then Reid spiked a fever on a visit to Illinois, and Graham caught that bug a couple days later. After that Andy came down with something flu-like that has hung on and on and on. Body aches, headaches, mild fever. Reid inexplicably barfed in the car on our way to Atlanta. And finally today, Graham woke up with a sore throat and headache, eventually spiked a fever which then broke, and he’s just a normal kid running around with a headcold.

I. Seriously. I’m done. Done worrying about everyone. Ready for it to warm up so we’re not all breathing recirculated air. Ready to quit nursing in my off hours. :)

Ahh. It’s not so bad I guess. The snuggles alone are worth it. I’d just rather everyone felt better while doing it!


Oh my gosh. I hate when I haven’t written in forever. There’s so much to catch up on! Moving into the house, Christmas, you name it. But those topics will have to wait because we have had the pure bounty of SO MANY BABIES being born in the last month.

First up: Gracie. Born to Michael and Rose on December 11. Just the sweetest little rosebud ever.

20140127-204659.jpgI had the opportunity to go see her last weekend but Reid came down with a stomach bug so we opted out. Nobody wants a visit when you show up at the doorstep with the promise of raging diarrhea 1-3 days later. 😉

I am hoping we get to see this sweetie next month when we’re all home for a teeth cleaning. (Am dying that I haven’t seen her yet, FOR THE RECORD.)

Next up, by order of birth, Miss Claire. My lifelong friend, Jodi’s, little girl. She decided to arrive fashionably late on January 3rd. I got to go jet off to DC this weekend to see her and her mommy and daddy.

20140127-205124.jpg Sleepin’ like a boss. 😉

I will testify as an eye witness. She is awesome. And Ben and Jodi are doing awesome navigating that crazy time that *is* the first few months of being a parent. It was such an awesome weekend.

And then there was Kate. Born to Brian and Michelle on January 23rd.

Get *over* yourself with those oh-so-pinchable chubby cheeks, Kate. What a sweet sweet girl. Apparently living up to the “easy second kid” rep that all parents hope for. We get to see this sweetheart at the end of this month. We’re all hopping a plane to Atlanta for that. Excitement will be twofold: we get to see Brian, Michelle & the kids AND we get a break from this Mars-like winter we’ve been having.

How could I keep from smiling?!

Easy answer. I don’t. :)

Paint Conundrum

Difference between this husband and wife, summed up in a single conversation. 

Background: We close on our new house this Wednesday (yay!) and have been discussing painting the upstairs bedrooms before we move in. 

Andy: “I just realized, I don’t know how we were planning on being able to paint before we move in…”

Me: “I think I know where you’re going with this.”

Andy: “… all our stuff is in storage.”

Me: “I was TOTALLY just thinking the same thing! Ha! And yeah, I don’t really know what to do about it.”

Andy: “Well, I know I can get to one of our ladders, but it think we’re going to have to buy all-new paintbrushes.”

Me: “… Oh… Nope, I was worried that we can’t get to any of our bed linens so that we can pick paint colors.”