Thursday, September 30, 2010


Harriet's snorts and squeals quickly evolve into a full-blown wail as we continue to bounce along on our Sunday ride home from church.  Mr Elephant, jingling helpfully from the car seat handle, has lost all appeal.  The pacifier is obviously just an overrated distraction.

"Hang on, honey," I say, reaching to the back seat to pat her head.  "It's just a little bit longer now."

That only seems to exacerbate all of her sensibilities.  Mom, I have been in this car seat all. day. long and Mr Elephant is so boring and he keeps whacking me in the face and I'm near the point of utter starvation and you keep shoving that stupid plastic nipple into my mouth and it doesn't do a thing for me and I'm sick of sitting in here and I WANT TO GET OUT NOOOOOOOOOW!

Steve and I glance at each other and smile.  Oh the drama.  There are just three miles left before home...she will survive.

But Harriet, with all of her baby capabilities, has no sense of distance and no knowledge of just how quickly her needs will be met.  She continues to scream.

Fast forward to a week or so later and another Bronco ride.  Harriet sleeps peacefully, Steve drives placidly, but I pout in the front seat.

God, I just wanted to have enough money to buy some beautiful fabric just to make some beautiful things and I don't want to have to give up all of our savings to have to fix our stupid broken vehicles and how in the world are we going to be able to move and find new jobs and I'm jealous of other gals who actually get to sleep with their husbands at night and I just want us to feel like NORMAL MARRIED PEOPLE NOOOOW!

God lovingly smiles, shakes his head.  Oh the drama.

Like Harriet, I don't know when or how the answers will come...and it's so easy to keep on wailing.  But if Steve and I love Harriet and will provide for her needs at the end of a car trip, how much more will God in his steadfast love provide for my needs each and every day?

I do know this:
For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favor and honor.  No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly.  O Lord of hosts, blessed is the one who trusts in you.  ~ Psalm 84:11-12
(For a neat story about getting what you really need when you really need it, check out this snippet about J.I. Packer.)

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Chocolate Trifle (or Amelia Enjoys Her Sunday Foray into the World of Sugar)

So this probably isn't a good day to post this since I just got back from a MOPS meeting during which we listened to an excellent program on healthy eating habits.  Maybe I'll talk about healthy eating habits first and then I'll get down to the nasty stuff.

In order to get back down to pre-baby weight I've been very consciously attempting to lower my carbohydrate and sugar intake, as well as exercising at least five days a week.  I usually pick which meal will include a carb item (toast, pasta, etc) and then plan so that the rest of my meals will be sans carbs.  It can be really challenging (especially when Harriet and I walk down to visit Granpa at the bakery), but a little diligence goes a long way: I'm only 4 lbs away from my goal.

What does this post's title have to do with all of this health/weight loss stuff?  Well, you see, Sunday is a day of rest and not only do I rest from cooking (thanks to Qdoba and frozen pizzas), I also rest from my healthy eating regimen.  That equals eating something of a Dessert-ish disposition.  Hence the Chocolate Trifle that I made for Sunday night church.

It was incredible.  You just can't beat chocolate cake soaked with coffee and layered with chocolate pudding, whipped cream and Heath bars.  Yum, yum, yum.  This recipe was also super quick to assemble and make an   enormous bowlful.  (No, I didn't eat the entire bowl, although it was tempting.)

Here is the recipe:


  • 1 package (18-1/4 ounces) chocolate fudge cake mix
  • 1 package (6 ounces) instant chocolate pudding mix
  • 1/2 cup strong coffee
  • 1 carton (12 ounces) frozen whipped topping, thawed
  • 6 Heath bar (1.4 ounces each), crushed


  • Bake cake according to package directions. Cool. Prepare pudding according to package directions; set aside.
  • Crumble cake; reserve 1/2 cup. Place half of the remaining cake crumbs in the bottom of a 4-1/2 or 5-qt. trifle dish or decorative glass bowl.
  • Layer with half of the coffee, half of the pudding, half of the whipped topping and half of the crushed candy bars. Repeat the layers of cake, coffee, pudding and whipped topping.
  • Combine remaining crushed candy bars with reserved cake crumbs; sprinkle over top. Refrigerate 4-5 hours before serving. Yield: 8-10 servings.

You can find the original here at Taste of Home.

It definitely made Sunday worth the wait.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Harriet at Eleven Weeks

(How neat to have my 100th post be about my favourite little person!)

I look pregnant again.

Harriet Alice is eleven weeks old and she accompanied her parents, aunts and uncles, and grandmother on a trip to the Pumpkin Patch.  While she spent a considerable amount of time snoozing away in the wrap she did manage to get carried around by Aunt Eleanor...

Eleanor looks like an escaping movie star her Daddy do some serious pumpkin chunkin'...

Steve could actually hit the hay bale targets.

...and smile charming smiles right before spitting all over her grandmom:

Harriet continues to reach developmental milestones at an almost alarming speed.  This week's grand discovery was the ability to grab something, move it to her mouth, and proceed to chew with great enthusiasm.  She also loves to grab our fingers and pull herself up from a semi-reclining position to a upright seated position...and then get too excited and fall forward or backward without warning.  She is very interactive and likes to tell stories (especially about her trip down the big hay bale slide today).  She will also let us know with extraordinary vehemence the exact moment that she becomes uncomfortable or lonely.  Harriet definitely has her crabby moments, but she is a relatively calm and pleasant baby overall.

She is our daily delight.  That's for certain.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Fantabulous Friday: My Crafty Endeavors of Late

Having an 11-week-old does not afford excessive amounts of time for creativity, aside from creatively pinned diapers, creative songs about Her Royal Sweetness, and creative ways to keep one hand on Her Royal Sweetness while cooking dinner with the other hand.  So I guess it affords a different kind of creativity, but rarely enough time for...crafts.

I, however, need to do crafts in order to save that little part of Amelia which, in recent past, devoted a least a little part of each day to fabric or paper or buttons (mostly involving Pink Things).  In light of this need, I am attempting to spend at least 30 minutes per day completing either a small-but-cute/functional project or working on a larger project (like baby clothes).

One thing I had to do was reorganize my crafting space.  You see, I have a lovely corner down in our basement in which I can stash my patterns and fabric and other supplies, but it was such a disorderly mess that it was taking me an hour to find my seam gauge and by that time Harriet was making her presence known (she doesn't like to craft yet).  It seemed like a good use of my time to organize the space, and so I did last weekend:

I moved some tables around, sorted all of my fabric into a dresser, and organized my thread and other random supplies into plastic-drawer-things.  And I put a pink table cloth on my sewing table and hung Happy Things up on the wall (i.e. pictures of Steve and me, a picture of Harriet, a verse, and a calender from Ireland.  Oh, and my Phantom poster is up there, too, along with a painting of Steve when he was Frank Butler).  I think my creativity is increased when I'm working in a better space.

Here is a really quick but really splendid little project that I found on create...breathe (check out this blog for very fun ideas):

I made this huge rosette out of green hem facing and hot glued it to my favourite brown headband to create my Favourite Headband of All Time.  It took about 15 minutes.  And Harriet slept.

(I wore it once - on a day of fabric-and-junk-store-browsing with Mom - and then came home and accidentally sat on the headband and totally broke it.  Sadness.  But it was my Favourite Headband of All Time while it lasted.  I need to make another one.  I have some fantastic pink dupioni scraps that are begging to be displayed prominently.)

Our craft at MOPS last week was creating Resilience Boxes.  These boxes are made by decorating an old shoe box in a way that reflects each of our individual personality. Then each month we add something to the box which will increase our resilience as mothers (like chocolate or 30-minute meal ideas or nail polish or the like).  I didn't get very far on decorating mine at the actual meeting (uh, perfectionist tendencies don't always lend themselves to efficiency), so I took 10 minutes and finished the box here at home with my own extra thingies:

I like it, especially because the shoe box has a handy little cardboard latch on it which keeps the lid from flying around.  I think that when I am done Resilience-ing, I'll stick some thread or buttons in the box.  Organizing in cute things is so much better.

Gotta go babysit the Heathens.  Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


We have some idea, perhaps, what prayer is, but what is meditation? Well we may ask; for meditation is a lost art today, and Christian people suffer grievously from their ignorance of the practice.  Meditation is the activity of calling to mind, and thinking over, and dwelling on, and applying to oneself, the various things that one knows about the works and ways and purposes and promises of God.  It is an activity of holy thought, consciously performed in the presence of God, under the eye of God, by the help of God, as a means of communion with God.  Its purpose is to clear one's mental and spiritual vision of God, and to let His truth make its full and proper impact on one's mind and heart.  It is a matter of talking to oneself about God and oneself; it is, indeed, often a matter of arguing with oneself, reasoning oneself out of moods of doubt and unbelief into a clear apprehension of God's power and grace.  Its effect is to humble us, as we contemplate God's greatness and glory, and our own littleness and sinfulness, and to encourage and reassure us - 'comfort' us in the old, strong, Bible sense of the word - as we contemplate the unsearchable riches of divine mercy displayed in the Lord Jesus Christ. 
- J.I. Packer, Knowing God 

Monday, September 20, 2010

Harriet at Ten Weeks

It is so exciting to watch Harriet continue to grow and develop.  Steve and I agreed that she seemed like such a big girl this much be reaching the double digits in weeks that did it to her.

Harriet is such a persistent spitter upper.  We try not to jostle her about after eating, but no matter what preventative measures are taken, we always get baptized.  (Sometimes Flori gets baptized...sometimes the floor at the mall...sometimes Harriet just baptizes herself which I think is a pretty good indication that she is a covenant child....)

She continues to absolutely adore her Sleepy Wrap.  While she does get some quality playtime outside of the wrap, she ends up spending most of her day toodling about with me.  She can face outward during her more awake times and help me with housework or decluttering or cooking.  And as soon as she gets crabby she can face towards me and take a nap.  At first I was kind of concerned that her best nap times happened in the wrap and not in her bassinet, but it makes sense that she would be the most relaxed while snuggled with me...that's the way she liked it for nine months, after all.  Not only does the wrap cue her for sleeping, but it also creates a consistent environment for her naps - whether we are at home in our normal routine or busy helping at MOPS or running through the grocery store.  The other nifty glifty thing?  Steve and I can both wear it without having to adjust a bunch of straps.  Everyone needs a Sleepy Wrap.

(click collage to enlarge)

Harriet is enjoying her new hot pink hoodie (hello, chilly September days!) and playing her new spitting game. The spitting game started on Saturday when we started spitting at each other and she found it to be a tremendous joke.  Now we play regularly.  Harriet has also settled in to a lovely nighttime routine of sleeping four hours in between each feeding.  That equals waking up once or twice a night.  Hurrah!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Harriet at Nine Weeks

Dear old Harriet is nine weeks, now, and to celebrate she went to Target and got her very own Bumbo chair:

Harriet is a trifle wobbly in neck to maintain proper head support for the duration of her sitting experience, but a little Boppy pillow solves that problem quite well.  So she sits and talks and goos and laughs at us and generally enjoys observing the world from her preferred upright position.  No bouncy chairs for her.  No, siree.  She has also discovered that the taggie blanket from Aunt Bug is really the best toy around:

She will spend a relatively long time trying to figure out how to shove the ribbons in her mouth and trying out the different textures.  She also loves to sing along with my renditions of "Blowin' in the Wind," "You've Got to Hide Your Love Away," and "Jesus is Coming Again."

Monday, September 6, 2010

Harriet at Eight Weeks

Eight weeks already?  Crazy.  See the cute little dress in these pictures?  Well, it was accompanied by an adorable pair of bloomers with a darling flower right on the butt...however, after Harriet pooped four times in succession during church yesterday the bloomers weren't in photographic condition.  Or maybe they were.  Just not on Harriet.

This kid is amazing.  She tells us stories and pukes all over the floor and goes geocaching and endures long shopping trips (more about that later) and swats at her elephant toy.  She even dresses up like a doggie:

  Now she is napping, which means that I need to be showering.

Happy Labor Day!