Friday, July 30, 2010

This week's Stressers, My Pediped Loyalty, & Bedtime Bootcamp

Happy Friday!  Whew.  It's been a really long week, and I'm so excited that in 6 hours I'll be on weekend time. 

The following stressers contributed to the awful long, crap pot of a week; Chloe's limp, worry, Dr. appt, worry, Xrays, worry, Cam's teacher assignment for next year (post on that later), worry, and probably the biggest factor, THE SOUTH BEACH DIET, starvation.

The SBD has turned me in to a carbohydrate deprived, energy-less, ornery, wench.  I've been surviving this week on a lot of protein, eggs, and I think I ate an entire bag of organic frozen broccoli.  I did manage to work out twice, including a down and dirty Zumba class last night.  That felt awesome!  I'm down nearly 4 lbs this week, so hopefully I can survive the next nine days of Phase 1 and then I'll be where I need to be and can finally indulge in a Strawberry or ten.  From what I hear, this is the hardest part.  Please send encouraging thoughts to my inbox, oh, and a box of e-chocolates, or a freshly baked e-cake.

The bright spots in this week included:
1)  Getting the news that Chloe's X-rays are normal and that her legs/hips/ankles are perfectly fine
2)  Getting a pedicure with the bestie yesterday, love my pretty tangerine toes!
3)  Internet shoe shopping.  LOVE IT!  I decided to buy Chloe a pair of Pedipeds in the next size up on the off chance that her shoes are too small and contributing to the limp.  If you haven't tried their shoes yet, you should.  They are soft, made well, and Chloe loves them.  She loves to put her shoes on and hates to take them off.  She'll pick her pedipeds over sandals any day.  These are pretty much the only shoes she wears.  Her sister had 10 pairs of shoes in her closet at this age.  Chloe has one.  I think instead of spending $8 - $10 here and there on a bunch of different shoes, spending $30 at one time for just one shoe is a better choice. 

I picked up this pair of Gisele Chocolate Brown/with polka dot shoes sized 6-12 months at a local consignment store, brand new, in the box, for $8.  They were a steal, and were also the driving force behind my Pediped loyalty.  (I think babies should be barefoot until they NEED shoes.  Chloe began wearing these when she was 12 months old and started standing on her own.  That's why she wasn't in them very long)

But, you know how kids grow.  About 8 weeks later Chloe was in the next size.  So, when Chloe was 14 months old, I ordered the Abigail shoe in size 12-18 months from Tiny Soles
They sell them for $31, with free shipping.  Aren't they adorable?  They match EVERYTHING.

And, even though I think these will be way too big on my little peanut.  I thought I should have them in the arsenal, just in case her shoes were too small, or at least be prepared for the jump to the next size.  So, after about 8 weeks in the Abigail Shoe, I decided to buy a sale shoe.  I ordered these in metallic silver which is not my favorite color choice, but for $15 vs. $31 -It'll do. 

And finally, tonight our family is embarking on Bedtime Bootcamp.  We need to train our 4 1/2 year old to go to bed when it's bedtime, stay in bed, and for goodness sake let Momma & Daddy have some alone time.  We've been far too lenient letting her watch one more TV show, play quietly in her room, etc. until she is tired.  The result, is that she comes out of her room 10x a night, and is constantly needing more water, or crackers, or to go potty, and Hubs and I have zero time to unwind in the evenings.  These antics are wearing me down.

So, tonight it starts - Bedtime Bootcamp.  By 8:30, Camdyn will be in her bed with the lights off, and will be on her way to dream land.  I am no longer going to allow her antics/stalling, and I will sit in a chair at the far end of her gigantic bedroom, and watch her fall asleep....every night....for as long as it takes for her to understand that going to bed at 8:30 and promptly falling asleep is what is expected of her. 

Pray for me or send me a bottle of wine.

This is going to be a test of my patience, my will power, and probably my sanity.  But, in the long run it will pay off. 

Big Thanks to Mama Hen at Mama's Little Chick for the I am feeling pretty darn foxy now that I have this pretty little award in the cabinet and am down almost 4 lbs. 

And I lovie me this

Thank you TV at TV's Take for this award.  If you haven't visited TV yet, you should.  She writes short concise blogs that inspire you to use your brain power, perhaps share a standpoint, or an experience, and she's just a breath of fresh air.

I hope ya'll enjoy your weekend!  I'm starting mine in 4 hours (man this post took awhile) and I'm going to kick it off with an hour long photo shoot that I have been looking forward to for days!  Hopefully I have some worth while pics to share next week!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Wordlessness Wednesday - Photo Challenge - Dr. Recap - Whew.

“When the solution is simple, God is answering.”
~Albert Einstein

The theme this week over at the Paper Mama Photo Challenge is Absolute Favorite. 
Holy Hard.  To decide on just one picture is akin to torture. 

The Paper Mama

So, I narrowed it down. My favorite must be a picture that I took the time to print. Since you know most pics just live on the computer and never find their way to paper, or a baby book. So, not only did I print this picture, but I printed it on canvas, which means, it must be my Absolute Favorite!
Surely, everyone has a favorite picture.  So, hop on over to Chelsey's Place and join the fun!

Dr. Recap: 
The Hubs and I met at the Ped's office at 3:15.  Apparently, my rampant googling and subsequent panic/neurosis must have weighed on Hubs too.  I never asked him to meet me there, he just did.  I'm so grateful for that.  In the future, I am going to try and refrain myself from googling things that will freak me out.  That's what happened in this case.

So, we visit the Dr. and he hears our concerns.  Hubs throws in the fact that I googled "Limping 16 mo. old" and am freaking out.  The Dr. politely discourages me from doing things like that because the Internet has no filter.  The results I received happen about 1% of the time, or less.  So, whew.  I felt a little better.  He also assured me that when a child has a severe illness it doesn't manifest itself in limping as it's only presenting symptom.  Whew.  And, the fact that she holds weight on it, and it comes and goes also means it's not something major.  Whew. 

He lays her down and looks at her legs and feet, he squeezes, and she squirms.  He flips her over to inspect the skin folds, they should match, and they do.  He holds her at one end of the hallway, we go to the far end.  He sets her down, and she runs - like RUNS, Sprints, baby style - down the hallway to me to Hubs (I love the fact that she prefers him over me, she is our little daddy's girl).  He thinks her gait is normal.  Yes, it is normal, no limping right now, because it comes and goes.

He suggests that we do an X-ray just to rule out a toddler fracture, but he is pretty certain it will come back normal.  I ask if we should do blood work (because there is still that piece of me that is freaking out about the C word) and he says that he is 100% certain that is not necessary, but if it will make me feel better then no problem.  He states that he's seen one new cancer patient every month for the past 3 months straight.  Each one presented with multiple abnormal symptoms, and Chloe definitely does not fit in that category.  Well, I'm not big on unnecessary testing/needle torture, so I trust him.  He believes her limp is soft tissue related; a sprain, internal bruising, a pulled muscle, cramping, etc.

Today, she is walking normally.  Today she is happy as a lark.  Today, I will order her new shoes, which excites me because I love shopping for Pediped shoes.  Today, she'll get an X-ray.

Thanks for the prayers and words of comfort.  I feel 100x better today than yesterday, and would like to report that I slept better too, but that didn't happen due to 4 year old night-time fears and antics. 

And, I will try my best to exert some restraint when I feel the urge to WebMD or, at the very least, Google responsibly.  Promise. 

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

I worry.

I worry.  I'm a worrier by nature, and it's something I'm working on.  Last night, as I was trying to fall asleep I had to keep repeating to myself "Give it all to God." 

Chloe has developed a limp.  For the past few days, late in the evening we've noticed that she hobbles on her right foot.  We'll remove her shoes, it seems to get better, and in no time she is running around.  She bears weight on it, squats on it, and all seems fine, and then she'll limp again. 

Last night when I picked her up from school her teacher told me that she tripped, screamed, grabbed her ankle in pain, and then when I walked through the door she was practically dragging her right foot along.  At that point I decided I have to bring her in.  Are her shoes getting too small, they still go on easily?  I don't see a splinter, or blister?  Did she twist her ankle or break something?  I'm worried. 

This morning she was walking fine.  I sent her to school today in different shoes, hand-me downs from sissy, and she ran in them all the way down the hallway. I'm going to take her to the Dr. this afternoon, but in the meantime. I pray. I pray that this turns out to be something simple. 
I took these shots of her on Saturday - she is standing with all of her weight on her right foot.

Monday, July 26, 2010

My Kid is NOT going to be a Serial Killer....probably

Camdyn and I spent the last two weeks plugging away on a little book called "Ramona & Beezus."  I went to the library looking for "The Indian in the Cupboard" but couldn't get my hands on it, so we settled for Ramona.  I remember reading all the Beverly Cleary books as a child, and thought this would be a great 1st non-picture book for her. 

And then, by chance, I saw a commercial for the movie.  Perfect Timing! 

We finished the book on Saturday night, so yesterday I took Camdyn to see the movie.  This is also the first non-cartoony movie she's seen at the theater.  We crunched on popcorn and sipped on soda as the movie played on.  She laughed at all the right places, and asked questions in a voice far louder than a whisper.

And, then it happened. She showed me that she is indeed her mother's child, and that she inherited my sensitive, sappy, and emotional side. Toward the end of the movie there is a scene where Ramona decides to run away because she is fed up with always messing things up. Her mother helps her pack her suitcase and sends her off. She walks down the street and is waiting at the bus stop, when her mother's voice blares from the baby monitor (weird, cause those aren't two-way radios, but whatever) in her suitcase. Then, the bus moves, and Ramona's family is standing there. At this point, Camdyn bursts in to tears. I'm not talking about one big crocodile tear rolling down her cheek, I'm talking sobbing. She even buried her head in to my chest as she cried. Now, it was definitely a tear jerky kind of moment, my eyes were misty, but when Cam started to cry, I. Lost. It. 

It was such as sweet moment.

When, we got home we talked about the movie, the cat that died in the movie (no tears at that part), and about Ramona's wild imagination, and about the "happy tears" at the end of the movie. 

I was pretty much floored that a child her age (4 1/2) could empathize with a character to the point where she was moved to tears.  That she could place herself in Ramona's shoes, and imagine all of the feelings that Ramona was feeling, and then display them.

Camdyn on the "Mermaid Rock."  Usually when we walk by this rock in our neighbor's yard, she climbs on it and starts belting "Up where they walk, up where they run, up where they play all day in the sun..." 

And because of that gift, that ability to feel for others, I deduce that Camdyn will more than likely not be a Serial Killer, or an animal abuser, and she'll probably grow up to be a compassionate and albeit sappy writer. 

Like Mother.  Like Daughter.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Flashback Friday - The College Years

The Year is 1997

The location - A small, small, small, private college located in the heart of the Midwest

Our Mascot - The Regents.  What the heck is a Regent?  We'll call it a Lion.  That's my roommate Jill in the Lion suit.  She was actually a really good mascot.

That's me.  I was on the dance team.  We danced to "Come on Ride that Train, and Ride it" and other really cool songs!  I'm amazed that I was that tan, in the middle of winter, in the heart of the Midwest.  I'm not that tan now and I live in FL and it's summer. 

Sorry, Momma, for the snow sculpture.  I didn't build it, just took a picture with it.  Some friends erected it (I kill me) outside of the arts center late one snowy evening.  It is art, right?  Love the twigs, in the snow balls....they paid attention to detail.  We posed with it, and then hung out in the arts building early the next morning as the maintenance men scrambled with their riding snow tractors to knock it down.  The sculpture was covered in ice by the time they got to it.  It took them the better part of a half hour to knock it down.  Small town fun.

And then there were my girlfriends, Hilary, Jill (the Lion), Trisha, and me.  We loved to wear shirts that were far too small.  Seriously, what were we thinking?  Anyway, Jill and I lived in the Handicapped Suite that year.  Yeah, I guess we were the most handicapped people living on campus that year, so we scored.  We had an entrance from outside the building directly in to our suite, a handicapped bathroom that had a shower large enough to fit 6 fully clothed people, or 3 was huge!  We loved hanging pictures all over the walls, and Xmas lights were the rage.

I loved eating Papa John's pizza and watching Kobe & the Lakers.  Napping and Dancing were my favorite past times.  And, I built friendships that will last a lifetime. 

I was in such a rush to get in and out of college in 4 years.  I couldn't wait to put studying, papers, and classes behind me, and get out in to the real world.  Knowing what I do now, I would have slowed down.  I would have held on to the college days, I would have taken 5 years to graduate, and I would have told the real world to wait.

These were some of the best years of my life.

Sorry about the pics.  My scanner is janky.

Happy Friday, Y'all!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

A Return to My Roots

Literally.  Much to my Daddy's dismay, I've lost the blonde and gone a shade darker than my natural. 

Self portraits are awkward, video is easier, especially when a 4 year old is assisting in the dialogue.

I like it.  It matches my eyeballs!

And, isn't the little white dog the cutest!

Thankful Thursday - The 16 Month Letter

Dear Miss Bellie Boo,
Here we are at 16 months already.  I'm most cognizant of this time warp that I'm in the middle of, in the evenings as we sit in the rocking chair.  This is something that we just started doing a few months ago.  When you were a newbie I was scared. to. death. of succumbing to the sweetness and underlying demon that is rocking a baby...endlessly, tirelessly, bleary eyed, praying the baby will fall asleep all the while wishing I was in bed.  Babies waking just to be rocked.  It was a habit I didn't want to start so we never did that.  You were taught and loved falling asleep on your own, completely unassisted and I was appreciative of that.  You gifted me with time to spend with your sister and time to unwind. 

But, now you are older, so we rock while you have your nighttime bottle.  Yes, you still get a bottle.  I just can't seem to say good-bye to the baby in you.  We rock, and I lament.  How your legs have lengthened and now spill over the arms of the wooden rocker, how you push your feet against it, and curl your toes over the unfinished wood.  How you have the strength in your core to move yourself from a cradled position in my arms to sitting upright.  How you wiggle down off my lap and wander around the room, playing with the CD player, picking up books, and looking out the blinds.  Maybe I should have started rocking you sooner.

And no sooner do I think that and you toddle over, holding your bottle to your lips, holding a binky in your hand and your blanket wrapped over your shoulder, and you want me.  You want me to rock you and to hold you, and to stroke your forehead until you fall asleep, and I am content to do so. 

I know these moments won't last.

In your waking hours you are changed.  You are all toddler, running, dancing, trying to jump but finding your feet steadfast to the floor.  You comprehend almost everything we say.  When I say "Use your words please," you do.  You have a vocabulary, and your first two word sentence being "Mo Kwa-Ker" (more cracker).  You love balls, birds, dogs, and lotion.  You will stand in the bathroom and squawk the most hilarious squawk until I walk in and ask you to use your words.  Your response "Mo" while pointing to the lotion.  So, I squeeze some into your sweet palm, and you are happy.  You run around the living room with it while I pray that you don't touch the furniture, and then you rub it all over your belly.  It's quite hilarious.  

I know these moments won't last. 

And when you aren't babbling up a storm, sucking on your pacifier, or eating ravenously, you show us that you are still the screamer you were born to be.  You still have that spitfire in you, and we hear it.  We hear it over the 5 teeth that you are presently cutting at one time (2 of them being molars), we hear it over diaper changes which you deplore.  And every time I hear it, I think "scream on baby girl, let the whole world hear you."  I believe you have a voice that will be heard.  A voice that will do the world good. 

But, by far the best thing about you at this moment, Belle, is this:

The refreshing thirst to learn; to experience; to feel cold raindrops on your face.  To take joy in every small part of life that adults take for granted; to experience life with wonderment and amazement.

Every moment is an opportunity to learn.   And, not only are you learning and absorbing everything about your environment and the world, but you are teaching us.  Teaching sissy about kindness and gentleness, teaching us how to play peek-a-boo, and "I'm gonna get you", teaching us about the sweetness in life that is gentle baby kisses on the lips and one finger hand holding. 

And, I know these moments won't last.

But, everyday I am THANKFUL, for you, sweet, sensitive, daddy's girl.  You balance our family.  You make our family complete. And, you are a source of joy.

Love you Forever and Always,


And 10 more things that I am Thankful for This Week:

51).  McDonald's for always making my coffee the right way
52).  The fatigue and soreness in my entire being right now from doing a Muscle Works class that about did me in yesterday.  It means I did my body some good
53).  Friends like Liz who motivate me to go workout and then listen quietly the whole time I complain about it
54).  Hot water - our water heater ran out of gas on Monday morning, and we had 2 days without hot water.
55).  Ramona & Beezus.  Camdyn and I are almost on the last chapter of this book and will see the movie when we are done with it.  This is our first book without pictures, and much to my surprise she loves it!  It's been a great bonding time for us every evening
56).  Hubs - for having some patience with me and I try to figure out the whole positive discipline thing.  Seriously, change is tough, but we are getting there.
57).  Sleek, Healthy, Brown Hair - I had my hairs did on Tuesday, I'm back to brunette and it's fabulous.  I should post a picture!
58).  Target brand diapers - because they are every bit as reliable as Huggies, and cheaper.
59).  Nordstroms - because I got two fantastic deals there last week, and I'm wearing them both right now.  Nothing like some new threads to make you feel new again!
60).  God and Christian Radio - because sometimes after a rough morning, a few songs and a little praise can change the day around.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Wordless Wednesday and a Photo Challenge

This Wordless Wednesday post is also going to double as my submission for this:

The Paper Mama

The theme this week is action:

Miss Belle had only been walking for a few weeks when I took this picture back in May.  She fell forward and had trouble standing up on account of all the material in her way.  And instead of helping her,
I was snapping away.

Happy Wednesday, Y'all!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Spontaneously Spontaneous

I have a very difficult time with the subject title of this post.  I'm a planner.  I plan everything.  I love plans, the anticipation of doing something planned, executing the perfect plan, perfectly.  It's the way God made me. 

This morning, I caught up on a friend's blog and she wrote about this very thing.  I've known Kirsten for a few years and she just recently started blogging.  She writes EVERY DAY about something that was positive in the day.  She has more dedication and commitment in her pinky toe, than I have in my entire body.  She, seriously, has not missed a day in over 134 days.  Yeah.  Whoa.  Go check her out.

So, Kirsten posted about a magnet that she has on her refrigerator that reads:

Which is oxymoronic and perfectly suits me.  So, I started thinking about spontaneity, and how I never really did have much of that running through my veins, but I had some, a little, before KIDS; spontaneous walks on the beach, dinners out, and romps in the bedroom.  Not everything was planned the way life is planned now.  It begins when baby pops out, and you start planning life around feeding schedules and nap times, and then as baby grows, you start scheduling play dates, and swim lessons, and even nights when you LOCK THE DOOR ::note to Hubs, when I say lock the door, it means, LOCK THE DOOR, not just swing it shut in a hurry - Camdyn's therapist will thank you for this.  kthanks::

And, then I thought about my Friday night, and how there was a flicker, a glimmer, of that little bit of spontaneity left in me. 

It was 8:00, Chloe was nestled in her crib, and the Hubs and Cammer hit the pool for a little evening swim.  She loves to swim when it's starting to get dark and we turn the pool lights on.  I get a massive craving for ice cream.  So, I shake out and run to the Taste d'Lites to grab some soft serve with rainbow sprinkles.  I don't know why I love sprinkles, they don't even have a taste.  But I love them, and I usually ask for double.  I buy two bowls, and bring it home.  Cam eats all of hers in between dives and somersaults in the pool.  I sit on the chaise and finish all of mine, and then I get an idea.  So, after a quick assessment of what I'm wearing,  sadly, nothing that couldn't survive the salt water.  I decide to skip the suit.  I walk over to the edge of the pool, wearing khaki pants and a t-shirt, and a goofy grin, and I cannon ball right in to the water.  When I surface, Camdyn says "MOMMA!!! YOU HAVE YOUR CLOTHES ON!"  And, then she swam over to me, and we turned circles, and laughed and I shivered...because swimming with your clothes on traps cold water next to your body and I was really cold.  Teeth chattering, kinda cold.  So, I started peeling my pants off...they were too heavy to swim in anyway.  Now, the Hubs is beginning to enjoy my spontaneity and he is circling closer and closer to me.  I hold him at a distance with a blue noodle...for a little while. 

So, it's not college crazy spontaneity anymore.  It's not unplanned road trips to the University of Iowa, or last minute flights to Cincinnati, but it'll do. 

It was just enough to make me still feel alive!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

McD's Morning

This morning the men folk woke up at the crack of dawn to golf.  So, the girls got dressed in our finest play attire and hit up the local McD's for some vittles and coffee.  Auntie Liz even got some coloring in, and baby Abby got her first taste of crayons, and I have a feeling it's going to be a great Sunday!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Thankful Thursday - An Open Letter to My Momma

You left town just over 24 hours ago, and Camdyn has already asked me a gazillion times "Where's Gramma?"  You are missed already. 

It's always so amazing to me how easily you just blend right in to our family life when you visit.  You anticipate what needs to be done and where you should be, before I even have the chance to ask.  Case in point, you must have emptied the dishwasher 5 times in 12 days, and never once did I ask you to.  Although, I try not to show it, you can tell when I'm exhausted, or overwhelmed, and you remind to take care of myself.  You know me.  You know me, like maybe only God knows me. 

That night when we spent a half hour playing 2 different types of Memory Games in Cam's bedroom and we concluded that memory really does go downhill with age, I was a bit saddened.  Saddened that we don't live around the block, saddened that you can't take the girls out to pizza on a Friday night, and then just drop them back off at home.  Saddended that these moments only happen 2 - 3 times a year. 

And, just as I begin to reflect on the choices that I made in my life; The choices that brought me to California for 4 1/2 years, the choices that lead to marrying a man who didn't live in my hometown; the choices that brought me 2 babies whom you love like they are your own.  I am THANKFUL.  I realize that the choices are blessings, and had my path led me to a different destination, the 2 little girls that brought our lives full circle, wouldn't be here.  The happiness that I feel when we are all together wouldn't be there.  The moments, like Belle's belly laughs during tubby time, wouldn't resound the way that they do.  Those moments would be lost in the casualness of everyday life. 

One day I hope that something will change, maybe the retirement years will allow you to spend more time down here.  Or, maybe I'll find myself a SAHM, and can spend more time up north.  But, for now, I'll treasure the moments, visit and revisit my pictures, and THANK the heavens that you are the type of Mom & Gramma that invests your time in your family.

You are the Momma I am learning to be.

Your baby girl

PS:  And when I found that 100 bucks that you snuck behind my cell phone as I took your suitcase out of my truck, I smiled.  Because that's what you always do and I could even hear you saying "buy something that is just for you."  And, then I laughed as Liz checked her cup holder to see if you left her $100 too. 

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Wordless Wednesday - Ride it, Ride On

“If you carry your childhood with you, you never become older.”
~Tom Stoppard

**Chloe riding her bus, which is really a shape sorter for Fisher Price Alphabet blocks.
It has a handle on it, so she can drag it around the house... 
...we pulled her around the block in it....and SHE LOVED IT!

...and sissy rode her bike almost naked.  Because she can.  And because she has no inhibitions which is the awesome thing about childhood.  Her dress was removed because it was getting caught in her back tire.  Every time she puts these undies on she roars like a lion...or a leopard.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

It's the Dad Life

It's been a busy two weeks with the rents in town. We've been lunching and shopping, swimming, and playing non-stop and it's been fabulous.  Today, I drive my momma to the airport which is always hard.  But, I'll have the company of the Bestie with me today and then we'll hit the International Mall for a little retail therapy and dinner at the Cheesecake Factory.  That should soften blow. 

Last night my Mom and I were sitting on the couch relaxing.  We were exhausted from an evening of playing at the park, wrangling kids in the tubby, dressing them, and feeding them.  We were unwinding, watching mindless TV, updating future blogs, and decompressing.  Well, Hubs comes rushing over with his cell phone in hand and he says "You have to watch this."  Um, my heart stops.  Hubs sometimes has a sense of humor that is worlds apart from my mom's and I was a little bit hesitant, okay, a lot a bit hesitant and slightly fearful of what he was going to show us.  I wouldn't want my Momma to be floored, shocked, appalled, or embarrassed by whatever the Hubs finds funny at the moment (BTW, I love that about him). 

So, he shows us this.

You're welcome.

Monday, July 12, 2010

I did it

I ventured off of the AV mode and took a few pics manually this weekend.  This was my very first click! (And don't laugh at my flowers.  The torrential rains we had over the 4th, washed em out, and nearly destroyed them.  I'm trying to talk them back to health)

and then this:


And then, since I was having so much fun exploring my camera, I decided to try out the timer.  I totally figured out how it works, but didn't quite figure out how to get everyone in the shot.  I love the baby head in the corner. 

Happy Monday! 

Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Enchanted Garden

Last Saturday, we packed up the kids and my parents and drove 10 minutes up the street to the Botanical Gardens.  Now, I've lived in this town for 7 years, have driven by the entrance gate hundreds of times and never once stopped to see the beauty that lies behind the gates and right on the coast. 

I gave Cam a five minute lecture that went something like this:
Me: Camdyn.  We are not allowed to touch the flowers and the plants inside this Enchanted Garden.  If we touch them they will kick us out.
Camdyn:  Kick us out?  But, God says it's not nice to kick.
Me:  I mean, they will ask us to leave, not really kick us.  It's just a phrase.  But, please, do not touch anything. Please.  Please.

So, we grab the umbrella, pack up the buggy, and head in.  We tour their indoor greenhouse, the butterfly garden, and a house that was built back in 1936, all the while dodging tiny rain droplets, and breathing the fresh air.  We take in the view of the water, the boats, and the gorgeous flowers.  Camdyn, is quick to remind me that I shouldn't touch anything, even if my shorts inadvertently graze a plant.  She asks questions about the plants, and she looks but never touches, which is huge for her, because she is known for popping the tops off of every flower she sees.  All the while Chloe sits in the buggy and points at herons and flowers.

Now, I'm not a Botanist or a Professional Photographer, so I can't do these plants
justice.  But, I do know that they were a sight to behold.

Especially, two giant trees, they may have been Banyan trees, I'm really not sure, but their roots systems were exposed, and the trees were intertwined in each other like they'd been the best of friends for centuries.  The kind of friends that grow in to each other and the kind that know that they will always be side by side and weathering it all for years to come.   It was spectacular to view, and even more fun for the kids to climb and wander around. 

We spent the bulk of our visit under these trees where the earth was dry and the air was cool.

And here's Gramma and Cam - that's one HUGE Tree

And after we'd spent two hours wandering the garden, only slightly soaked, we headed back to the car and Camdyn asked, "Mommy, why weren't there Princesses in the Enchanted Garden?" 

Because, my love, God was there instead.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010