It's been a long time since I've been able to write because I have been really busy lately! This little girl is really active now and doesn't nap as much as she used to, so there's not as much downtime as there used to be. Spud is really busy working on updating the residence halls, buying and loading and unloading furniture, and working his butt off (literally - I think he lost about 10 pounds sweating it all off!)
Tater tot's great-grandparents came for a week to visit from Pennsylvania. We only got to see them for a few hours when I came back home, so it was nice to have them visit and help out around here. We painted the kitchen, living room, butler's pantry, made and hung new curtains, went to Mammoth Caves in Kentucky, and Lincoln's Boyhood Home in Indiana. Mammoth Cave (pictured here) is beautiful, immense, and has the ability to magnify a screaming infant's cries 20 times and reverberate off of the walls.... That was fun! It was a little cool in there and I think the darkness freaked her out too. She was in a front-carrier with Spud, but I think she really wanted her mommy. I finally put her in my sling and gave her a bottle and she managed to settle down a little bit! Craziness!
Speaking of the tot, her crying jags have started to lessen a little bit. She still may have them, but they're not as bad as before and we're starting to be able to interpret her cries and help her settle down more.
We went swimming yesterday! Well, kinda. I blew up the orange Dino baby pool for Tater Tot, threw some plastic balls in there, and we sat under a tent in the backyard while Spud worked outside. She liked it.... for a little bit. But I think the water was too cold (even though it was 95 degrees outside) and she'd get a little too chilled. So, out she'd go, onto the beach blanket on the grass, to warm up and play, then I'd try to set her in the pool again to cool down.
It was really hot. In fact, it's been really hot here. I like summer and wanted to move south so we'd be warmer all year round, but with the ice storm, tornadoes, and heat waves, the only thing that moving south has done for us, has made us learn to survive natural disasters!
One thing that is rather nice, though, is the small rose garden we have in the backyard, started by the nuns that used to live here. Spud's also been working on planting vegetables alongside the house -he already has some beans that are growing!
I took a series of pictures with the baby next to the roses. Unfortunately, the early growing season expired, the roses died, and now we have lilies. Nice, bright, orange summer lilies. Pink roses for spring, yellow lilies for summer. Mums for autumn?
In a little over a week, we are going to North Carolina on vacation! My grandmother, aunt, uncle, various cousins/spouses/babies, and my dad live down there by the beach. That will be exciting! My grandmother, Granny au Gratin, is in her 80's and her birthday is on January 23rd - three days away from mine, and two days away from Tater Tot's. When I was younger, we were "birthday buddies" and she gave me one of her garnet rings. (Garnet is January's birthstone) It will be really nice to see four generations of my family together, just like when Jeff's grandparents were here and we saw the oldest and youngest generations of his family together.
So, we'll be leaving before the 4th of July, traveling across the Appalachian Mountains, going through Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina and then back into NC again on the east coast - right by the beach! We'll be back by the beginning of the next week. Already, I'm planning by buying bathing suits, beach towels, sunscreen... the list will go on and on....
Away we go!