Sunday, November 13, 2011

Little party for you...

Hey Little Miss. So yesterday we had a little early birthday celebration for you. Great fun! I didn't realize that you would get the concept of a party, but it is clear you did. For days before, when I would ask how old you were going to be, you would say "Twooooo!" in your usual enthusiastic voice. And then we would proceed to have a conversation about the "Par" (party), "take" (cake), as well as all the people who would be at your party - Auntie Lauren, Sam, Aaron, Ben, Matt, Susan, Grandpa, Grandma, Gramps, Debra and ma and da. You were really big into "all" in everybody. You like having everybody around you - such a social creature you are.

Ma made you a Sesame Street cake - you are big time into Sesame right now. It was strawberry cake with yellow cream cheese frosting. You loved blowing out the candles - LOVED it. And boy, you made out with the presents including a "cell phone" from Grandma and Gramps that you immediately took over to your car, climbed in, then started talking on it. Yikes! Ma needs to talk less on her phone while driving. See, you're ma's little mimic. You also got an Abby Cadabby doll from Auntie Lauren, some great puzzles from Debra, a very cool pilot jacket and teddy bear from Grandpa and Susan, and ma and da got you a train table.

Great party - I can only imagine they get better and better. You know, people always say "it goes so fast", in terms of raising kids. I haven't felt it yet. Maybe someday I will. But as of now, I feel like I've spent a life time with you. These past two years have felt like twenty a very good way. I feel like I have savored every moment. And your party yesterday was no exception.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Last of the petting farm days...

So today was beautiful - 60's and sunny. We went to the petting farm that we belong to. Based on our schedule and the weather, this may be one of our last, if not our last, visit before next spring. As always, you loved it. You've come a long way, baby, since we became members of this petting farm last spring. Early in the spring, you would just sit in your stroller and take in all the animals. Today, you walked the whole farm while holding onto my hand, called all the animals by name and made their respective noises. Today, you were really into the sheep. You kept saying "Baaaaaaaaa" at full volume. :-). On our way out, I showed you the moon. You were fascinated and wanted to "talk" to me about it. We had a nice day baby cakes. I'm glad we took advantage of the weather...tomorrow, rain.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Dorothy, the Tin Man, the Wicked Witch of the West...and Toto!

Oh baby - you just L-O-V-E-D Halloween! So much more so than I ever thought you would this year. Here's the rundown: Saturday, I took you to the mall trick-or-treating. Big mistake. It was so crowded and you will learn over the years that your ma just doesn't do crowds well. You didn't quite get the candy-in-the-basket concept yet (although by Monday, you were completely a pro). So we mainly went on the merry-go-round. It was a short trip.

On Sunday, we all went to the Liberty Athletic Club for a Halloween party. Although you seemed to enjoy yourself and looking at all the kids, we think you were just a little young for most of the stuff. But all was not lost - we won first prize for our Wizard of Oz themed costumes. You were the cutest Dorothy there ever was and ever will be...complete with ruby red sparkly shoes.

And then today, actual Halloween, we went trick-or-treating on Main Street in downtown Ann Arbor with Auntie Lauren and cuzes Aaron and baby Ben. I think Aaron showed you the way with the trick-or-treating because by the second store, you were a pro. And you had a clear preference for anyone handing out KitKats...those are one of ma's favs too. Then Matt joined us for lunch and after lunch you had the experience of eating your first candy bar...a Kit Kat :-). I think you thoroughly enjoyed it. And ma thoroughly enjoyed watching you.

So that was our craziness. We even got some candy from Gari, your music teacher...also a KitKat. I think she would say that you enjoyed Halloween with "great gusto" - as you do with most things in life.

Friday, October 28, 2011

I knew it! Stashed eggs...

So we got our first two eggs at the beginning of this week...found them in the coop. We know that the time between eggs is usually about 25 hours. So after those first two eggs, we had no eggs for 3 days. We suspected something was up. Then yesterday, when I went to clean the coop, I discovered 6 eggs next to our wagon, behind the coop. Apparently, I freaked the chickens out when I took their eggs that first day so they started a "secret" nest. As a mother, can't say I blame them. We ate those first two, BTW. Yum!

Little Miss, tonight I took you to the mall for trick-or-treating. You actually really enjoy the mall - in fact, now, as we get on the highway, you say a very clear "mall". Part of the reason you like it is that there is this little merry-go-round that costs $1 and I usually bring $2 and treat you. Of course, we did that tonight and you loved it. But the trick-or-treating part? Not so much. You really didn't understand that it was ok to take the candy from those handing it out. Honestly, I didn't like it so much either. Sooo crowded. You'll learn - your ma is not the biggest fan of crowds. So we may skip it next worries, you won't be missing much.

Tomorrow, your da comes home and we are carving the pumpkin and going to a Halloween party. You already painted a small pumpkin at your art table yesterday - it's all blue and very pretty, I must say. For almost two, you are quite the artist, Little Miss.

That's another thing you started today...when I ask you how old you are going to be, you say "Twoooo". You are currently obsessed with that number. So much so that I've considered ditching the Sesame Street theme and having "Twooo" be the theme to your party. How easy would that be? :-). Nah, I'll still probably do Sesame.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

An egg! And other adventures...

Yes! Finally! Maybe my hens are fertile after all. Or at least they can produce eggs. DH found one when he was closing up the coop tonight. He brought it in while I was giving Little Miss a bath and brushing my teeth. I spit my toothbrush write into the sink and said "Get the f&#k out!" (Sorry Little Miss). It was every bit as exciting as I expected it to be.

Other adventures these days...your da and I took our first little trip by ourselves. To Cleveland. Who knows what Cleveland will be like when you eventually read this someday. We went there because we lived there back in 1998. It was a great trip and although I of course missed you, I also know that a little time away every now and again will help me be a better mother. We brought you back an airplane bath toy from the International Women's Air and Space Museum. Grandma and Gramps watched you and from what they say, you were an angel and had a wonderful time. They said you talked a lot and that it appears that you know that our last name is "Wall". Impressive.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Baby cheeks

So, we have had an enjoyable few days...soaking up sunshine and fall weather in preparation for the long winter. Yes, baby, in Michigan the winters are long and gray. No worries, though. We'll still play a lot in the snow...just bought you boots yesterday and will probably pick up your snowsuit today. I want to be prepared for that first snow fall - I think you'll be very excited by it this year.

So one interesting thing - As we've been playing at parks, running errands and swimming/playing at " the Club"(your daddy and I recently joined an athletic club in Ann Arbor. We've decided to refer to it as "the Club" in an attempt to feel richer than we really are)this past weekend, three people have said the following "Look at those cheeks!". And then two others said "So, is she about 14 months?". I think it is because you have such baby hair still. I haven't gotten it cut yet because I don't want to loose that cute little curl on the back of your neck. So if you want to know what others think of your looks right now, I'll sum it up in two cheeks. And I L-O-V-E them.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Eggs, please, for this stage ma

So I've chatted a lot about Little Miss, but what about the Four Hens part? They are about 5 months and 2 weeks old and still no eggs. Although most chicken literature says they will start producing between 5-6 months, I'm worried they will never produce eggs. In fact, I can't envision actually finding an egg they produce. Or if I do find one, I can only picture it being all messed up in some way. I often wonder how this lack of faith in their systems working correctly relates to my own infertility trauma. I imagine there is some connection. And so it goes...projecting our own experiences and expectations (or lack there of) onto others - including chickens.

On another note, I take you, Little Miss, to music class on Wednesday mornings. Today, a local journal, affiliated with the Crazy Wisdom Bookstore, came for a photo shoot of the class. Side note - Ann Arbor is a bit of a hippie place and this is a bit of a hippie journal...and, well, because your ma has chickens, she may be considered a hippie as well by some. You will probably either love or despise parts of Ann Arbor living. I just hope that in some way parts of it have a positive impact on your growth. So this photographer was there and I'll admit it - while the idea was that we were suppose to just interact how we normally do in the class, I was very conscious of this camera person and did my best to "help" her get some pretty cute shots of you. Yes, it's true, I hope you are the feature picture because, let's be honest - it's hard to match your cuteness.

While eating your snack of teddy grahams and juice at the long kids table (your favorite part of the whole experience, I may add), Gari, your teacher, came up to me and commented about how you seem to approach every new experience with great "gusto". I love that. It is probably the best description of you at this age that I've ever heard. I do truly admire your gusto.

Sunday, October 9, 2011


Wow, baby cakes, what a weekend! You and I went to Grand Rapids visit your cousin, Liam and friends Becky, Ella, Abby, Macy and John. We played hard, went to an apple orchard, played on a playground and went to Meijer Garden and saw a huge bronze horse sculpture. I think you had a lot of fun. You seemed happy. You also seemed very independent and determined.

I know this independence and determination will serve you very well in life. However, I also hope that you learn to be a little dependent...just once in awhile. Ma doesn't have these skills, and frankly, it's exhausting. So keep that spunk Little Miss, but also know that it's ok to ask for help.

By the way, you currently call me "Ma".

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Gingerbread House

About three Christmas's ago, I was shopping at Target and saw this wooden house with 25 little doors...places to put small little treasures for little hands to find. We had just failed our IUI a few weeks prior.

I picked it up. I held it. I carried it around the store while I daydreamed about putting it in a very special place in our house. I envisioned our beautiful child (yes, Little Miss, I knew you would be a beauty long before you were born) waking up with excitement and opening each little door to find a treat or trinket. I thought about what a fun tradition it would be - I have never been a big holiday fan and have put it on my list of "Things I don't want to pass down". I also thought about the day that you would talk about what a fun tradition it was.

And yet through all this daydreaming and debating, I couldn't bring myself to purchase it. I just couldn't be sure that there would ever be a child in our house. And I couldn't bring myself to take the risk.

And the next Christmas I saw these houses at Target again - only I didn't pick one up and daydream about. We had failed our first cycle of IVF that previous summer.

Today, while having a little mommy time, I saw one of these houses yet again - only this time I purchased it with little hesitation for you, Little Miss. I hope you enjoy it. I hope it becomes one of those traditions that you talk about when you are an adult. But if you don't like it or talk about it when you're older, it's okay. Purchasing it was as much for me as it was for you. It is a symbol of the fact that I no longer have to take the risk.

It was a happy day.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Traverse City

Wow, baby, you were amazing on this annual trip. I'll admit - we had our doubts. Traveling just hasn't been good this summer. Our New Hampshire trip consisted of spending 3-4 hours a day/night in the car getting you to sleep...many of those hours in the middle of the night. We were beside ourselves when we got home - exhausted. And this was when you were confined to a crib. So when you busted out of the crib a month or so ago, we had no idea how you would travel.

Your bedtime routine still takes a solid hour. About 15 minutes of reading, following by 45 minutes of sitting on your little airplane stool as you toss, turn and rearrange and tuck in Ernie and Piggy. Well, the routine was about the same in the hotel room, but once you fell asleep, you stayed asleep. And that was G-L-O-R-I-O-U-S. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

You seemed to be filled with joy on this trip. You loved playing in the rocks along the Lake Michigan shore. You enjoyed some gelato with Daddy at an ice cream shop in a converted asylum...a little creepy I must say. And you were a superstar at Mission Tavern for dinner. You were the only child in the restaurant, and it was clear by the single booster seat and community crayon cup that children didn't frequent the joint. We got some dirty looks when we sat down, but you were quiet and shared my whitefish nicely.

Yes, you were a joyous superstar on this trip.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Mommy time...

It's so interesting to me that having Little Miss changes the motivation behind everything I do. Healthy or not, I find that she is the motivation of most everything I do. I'm trying real hard to take care of myself and my needs because I want her to grow up knowing that it's okay to take care of yourself - that everyone benefits when you take care of yourself. Taking care of yourself is not selfish, Little Miss.

So in the spirit of this, I am at a hotel tonight - the Holiday Inn Express near the mall. I checked in, checked out my upgraded room (thanks, hubby) and promptly went shopping. I bought odds and ends. Honestly, most of my purchases were for Little Miss; some socks for the fall and some Thomas the Train sheets for her big girl bed. I miss her. I’ve checked in at home about three times. Hubby said she cried for me during dinner. But this is a step – a step in learning how to take care of myself and give myself a break so that I can come home not only feeling refreshed as a mother and wife, but also as an individual with an individual identity...oh, and also as a chicken farmer.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

This blog

I use to blog about our infertility issues. Blogging provided an unexpected and much needed support system. Now that our Little Miss is here, we are just enjoying life and our time with her. But I miss blogging. In addition to creating such a support system, blogging was also my creative outlet. Little Miss is 17 months, my crazy semester at the university ended today and I am ready to get those creative juices flowing dive into something keep life do something quite different from the aviation industry.

What is more different from the aviation industry than raising chickens in the city? The chicks are ordered - Two Wyandottes, one Ameracauna and one Road Island Red. We willingly got permission from the neighbors. They seem excited - not just about the fresh eggs, but also about just having chickens around. One of them is convinced they will become the "neighborhood chickens". I think he's right. I hope he's right. I hope locals will appreciate a little bit of farm in the city...or grow to appreciate it. I know the risk...becoming known as the hippie "chicken lady". ;-)

It's a risk I'm willingly to take. I am grateful to be able to expose Little Miss to such a great town and now, with the passing of this law, I can also expose her to a little bit of country. I want her to see something grow - whether she'll remember it or not. I want her to see where food comes from. I want her to enjoy a fresh egg.

We also got the permit today. The coop has been picked out. Chicks are due to arrive May 4th. Oh - no worries. There will be pictures...lots and lots of pictures.