happy halloween...

Happy Halloween!








We went trick-or-treating on Monday night-- we saw great-grands and Pop and Gran V. Last night, Mat took AWA in her costume to see Aunt Cathy and Uncle Randall. I think our little duck had a good time.

She doesn't mind wearing her costume at all. In fact, I think she likes it.

She's a sick baby today, so I doubt we'll get out in our costume to church tonight, but we'll just have to see how it goes. Poor baby.

Happy Halloween...from our little puddle duck!



perfectly her mother

I ran across an article yesterday (thanks to Erin) that was about making pictures not just of your children but of making pictures of your children with YOU in them.

And that got me thinking. I make a lot of photos of AWA, but I don't make a lot of photos of AWA with me in them, as well. And that's really not fair to her.

Here's a little from the article. Go here to read the entire thing.

"But we really need to make an effort to get in the picture. Our sons need to see how young and beautiful and human their mamas were. Our daughters need to see us vulnerable and open and just being ourselves -- women, mamas, people living lives. Avoiding the camera because we don't like to see our own pictures? How can that be okay?

Too much of a mama's life goes undocumented and unseen. People, including my children, don't see the way I make sure my kids' favorite stuffed animals are on their beds at night. They don't know how I walk the grocery store aisles looking for treats that will thrill them for a special day. They don't know that I saved their side-snap, paper-thin baby shirts from the hospital where they were born or their little hospital bracelets in keepsake boxes high on the top shelves of their closets. They don't see me tossing and turning in bed wondering if I am doing an okay job as a mother, if they are okay in their schools, where we should take them for a vacation, what we should do for their birthdays. I'm up long past the news on Christmas Eve wrapping presents and eating cookies and milk, and I spend hours hunting the Internet and the local Targets for specially-requested Halloween costumes and birthday presents. They don't see any of that.

Someday, I want them to see me, documented, sitting right there beside them: me, the woman who gave birth to them, whom they can thank for their ample thighs and their pretty hair; me, the woman who nursed them all for the first years of their lives, enduring porn star-sized boobs and leaking through her shirts for months on end; me, who ran around gathering snacks to be the week's parent reader or planning the class Valentine's Day party; me, who cried when I dropped them off at preschool, breathed in the smell of their post-bath hair when I read them bedtime stories, and defied speeding laws when I had to rush them to the pediatric ER in the middle of the night for fill-in-the-blank (ear infections, croup, rotavirus).

I'm everywhere in their young lives, and yet I have very few pictures of me with them. Someday I won't be here -- and I don't know if that someday is tomorrow or thirty or forty or fifty years from now -- but I want them to have pictures of me. I want them to see the way I looked at them, see how much I loved them. I am not perfect to look at and I am not perfect to love, but I am perfectly their mother.

When I look at pictures of my own mother, I don't look at cellulite or hair debacles. I just see her -- her kind eyes, her open-mouthed, joyful smile, her familiar clothes. That's the mother I remember. My mother's body is the vessel that carries all the memories of my childhood. I always loved that her stomach was soft, her skin freckled, her fingers long. I didn't care that she didn't look like a model. She was my mama.

So when all is said and done, if I can't do it for myself, I want to do it for my kids. I want to be in the picture, to give them that visual memory of me. I want them to see how much I am here, how my body looks wrapped around them in a hug, how loved they are.

I will save the little printed page with four squares of pictures on it and the words "Morgan's Sweet Sixteen" scrawled across the top with the date. There I am, hair not quite coiffed, make-up minimal, face fuller than I would like -- one hand holding a sleeping baby's head, and the other wrapped around my sweet littlest guy, who could not care less what I look like."

No, I'm not always perfect. No, I don't always look great. And truth be told, no...I don't shower every day sometimes. But every single day, Ama-Watts is here with me, and I'm with her. Every single day she is my daughter, and every single day, I am her mother.
So, I am committing to be in the picture with her. So one day, when I'm gone and maybe she's missing me a little bit, she can look at a picture of the two of us...on some random Thursday...and she how I wasn't perfect, but how perfectly I was her mother.
I love you, Ama-Watts.


you're ten months old, wattsie!

Happy 10 months birthday, sweet girl! You've officially reached double-digits in your birthday months. What a big, big girl you are!



As evidenced by these photos, you are a wiggle worm, and you do not like to sit these days. You'd much rather stand. Therefore, our little photo shoot this month was very difficult for me! (Please excuse the absolute awfulness of the quality of these pictures. It's hard to set your camera's settings when you have a baby who likes to dive face-first off of the rocking chair. I did the best I could.)

You crack me up, little mover!

We did not have to visit the doctor this month for a check-up, but I know you have grown even since we visited the pediatrician for your nine months check-up on September 19th. At that appointment, you were 21 lbs., 13 oz. (between 75 and 90th percentile) and were 28 1/2 inches tall (between 50 and 75th percentile).



You are eating pretty much everything (except peanut butter and meat). We feed you meals three times per day, and you nurse generally 5 times per day for about 15 minutes.

You have gotten pretty good at army crawling, but you love to "stand up" (with someone holding your hands) more than anything. You love to "be a big girl" and let someone help you walk around.



On September 29th, you got your top left central incisor, and a day later on the 30th, you got your top right central incisor. You didn't have a terrible time teething, but we could sense some discomfort sometimes.

Also, on September 28th, you went from laying flat on your tummy to sitting up for the first time at Gran V and Pop's. Such a big girl!



I absolutely love it when you hug your stuffed animals. Lately, you've been loving your Brooks Brothers pink and white lamb that your daddy bought you before you were born. You get so excited when we show it to you, and you love to grab it and give it a good squeeze.

You love your bath time, and you love to splash the water. You also like to drink water out of your rinsing cup in the bathtub. You love to play with your water books while you are sitting in the bath.



Recently, you have decided that you don't like to lay on your back and have your diaper changed, which makes for some pretty tough diaper changes for your momma and daddy. You love to flip over on your changing table. You're quite the contortionist!

You love to run around in your walker, and you are not a huge fan of your jumper these days. Although, if I can't get you to nap by rocking you when you're tired, I can always put you in it, and you fall fast asleep.




You're favorite word is definitely "Dada," and you will most always say it on command. But, when I ask you to say "Mama," you usually respond with "Dada," too. Breaks my heart. ;)

You are growing and changing every single day. Your daddy and I are so very proud of you, and we love you so very much.




I am absolutely drunk in love with you, little girl. You are absolute joy to me.

I love you, sweet thing.