January 2010


this is a teaser for the thanksgiving post i am putting together….a little late!  i tried and tried to capture some good pictures of my nephew, lee, when the hardmans were in town for thanksgiving, but WOAH DOES THAT BOY MOVE FAST.  i both excitedly anticipate and cringe at the thought of the days in our near future when arden will be running circles around jason and me as our heads spin and smoke comes out of our ears.

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i just returned from an invigorating trip to the grocery store.  yes, indeedy: invigorating, exhilarating and energizing.  for once, the cause of all this excitement was not a sale on full circle white cheddar popcorn.  (this is not a joke; anyone who shops at the midtown schnuck’s know that it is ALWAYS on sale, right by the check-out lanes….and i ALWAYS buy the 4 packs for $10.)  no.  i am elated because today arden and i finally walked to the grocery store….let me start from the beginning:

i started my day an hour earlier than usual.  (i’m not going to mention the time, because then all the mamas out there who don’t have babies who sleep like the dead will hate me, and my dad will, as always, laugh at me for saying i ‘woke up early.’)  anyway, arden awoke crying loudly, so i accepted the fact that i was getting up early and stuck a pacifier in her wailing mouth to buy a few coffee-making minutes.  just as the coffee was poured and i took my first sip, i realized arden was sound asleep again.  oh, well, too late for mama….my day had begun.

this ended up being a good thing.  within the next hour, i checked my email, SENT some emails, put my contacts in, got dressed and drank aforementioned coffee, so i was RARING TO GO when arden woke up for real.  (note: ALL of these tasks are rarely accomplished before noon on a weekday!)  since i needed to hit up the grocery today, i thought, ‘why not do it NOW?’  so we were out the door at 9:00 (miracle #1), completed an entire shopping trip, including the walk there and back and a few delays from women OOHing and AHHing over how adorable arden looked all bundled up, within 1 hour (miracle #2) with NO fussing (miracle #3), and returned home where arden transferred to her crib quite nicely and went right back to sleep (miracle #4).  actually, any one of these things is not a miracle in itself, but altogether, this series of events made for one miraculous morning.  OH!  and to top it all off, i bumped into our favorite mailman approaching our house, and i was able to personally retrieve the mail from him with a smile, and without darla ferociously berating him from the other side of the mail slot and, therefore, waking the sleeping baby.

i realize i am rambling about what probably sounds like a very unexciting adventure to most people.  (thank you, 2 large cups of coffee.)  what i really intended to share is what cracked me up about the situation:  as i was walking with my head proudly held high, my heavy grocery bags strapped to and stuffed in the stroller and my well-behaved baby sound asleep with the 50-degree wind blowing in her face, i kept thinking, ‘i hope i am setting an example of what true midtown living should be: willingly walking to the store, even though it’s chilly, in order to enjoy the natural beauty of this winter day and the wonderful architectural details of our neighborhood.’  i could just feel mother earth giving me a nice, fat pat on the back.  then, i realized that people passing by (in their SUVs) and men standing on the sidewalks blowing leaves all over the street (with their gas-powered equipment) were most likely thinking, ‘oh, that poor mother!  i bet her husband lost his job, and she doesn’t have a car and has to walk to the grocery with that little baby in this frigid weather….’  NOT THE CASE, PEOPLE!  i am a tree-hugger, and damn proud of it.  and today, arden and i, together, conquered the grocery trip on foot!!!   i believe a new weekly ritual has begun.

right before arden drifted off to dreamland, i asked her what she thought of our new adventure.  this is all i got, but i am taking it as her nod of approval:

and now, for a product plug:  see the ‘mommy hook’ (aka our ‘big-ass carabiner’) pictured below?  it is AWESOME.  if you have any pregnant friends, run out and get them one TODAY.  this is one of the most versatile shower gifts we received (thanks, beth!) which we use to ‘walk’ the dogs when we have the stroller, carry extra toys and pacifiers and now, haul groceries home from the store!

when arden was a newborn, family members would often mention that they didn’t think she looked like her cousin, lee.  i thought otherwise.  there were moments, just like with lee, in which i would see glimpses of my mom and dad, so i knew she had to resemble lee somewhat.  lately, i’ve been getting nostalgic (i know, i know….she’s only 5 1/2 months old!!) and looking back at photos of lee and arden as newborns, and….well….you tell me: do you see any resemblances?

my aunt, stephanie (more widely known as toddy), had surgery monday, so we’ve been thinking about her alot these last few days.  she has been a steady source of entertainment throughout my entire life, as well as the most supportive and loving aunt for which a girl could ask.  i have always felt we were cut from the same cloth, for we share a love of dirty jokes, delighting in the senses of humor in children, a talent for belching that most gals simply cannot achieve (although my sister, elise, shares this talent, too!), and a habit of cussing like a sailor…but only in a good ole’ southern whisper, of course.  these are some of my favorite pictures of toddy with arden when she was just a wee little thing.  we love you, tod! XOXOXO

arden getting love from 3 norowski ladies

i finally made a craft for my first-born.  yep, that’s right: started it….and then finished it.  just like that.  BOO-YA!  and it was actually ready in time for her first christmas (outside of my belly, that is).  the process of making this ornament has re-inspired me to want to create all kinds of toy and decor items out of felt and scrap fabric, something i’ve been mulling over doing for quite a while now.  so the sketches are in full swing, and prototypes are to follow, which will hopefully lead to a small business venture in the near future.  if you truly have faith in my craftiness, you may place an order now for a unique 2010 ornament or stocking for your little one.  but for now, you’ll just have to trust me that it will be the cutest-darn-tootin-est ornament or stocking you’ve ever hung!

i often poke fun at the fact that so many baby clothes have little pockets, even the pajamas!  i mean, what exactly are infants under the age of 6 months supposed to put in these pockets?  pens?  pebbles?  pocket protectors?  little mini cell phones?  i always say that the pockets are for their pacifiers, but today, arden was wearing some pajamas that have a pocket so tiny that a pacifier wouldn’t even fit.  i mean, look at the size of this thing!

i couldn’t resist having a little fun with this….and finally, i figured it out.  they are for nail clippers!  miss arden needs a manicure about every 2 seconds, so that must be what all these fashion-savvy baby clothes designers are thinking, right?!?

okay, maybe not.

they say that a few spurts of playing alone each day are good for an infant’s development and independence.  i have to admit that it’s hard for me to leave arden alone to play without feeling a tad bit guilty.  but i try, because i know it’s good for her, she enjoys it, and….well….let’s just say i think i’m beginning to hear the piles of laundry and loose papers and christmas decorations that have exploded all over my house whispering to me in the night, BEGGING to be put away!

so, arden was having some necessary ‘alone time’ in her exersaucer the other day, which basically meant that while she played, i checked email across the room where she couldn’t see me.  things got eerily quiet after a minute, and i wondered what she was doing.  so i crept around the couch corner to find her arching her back and looking for me.  she wasn’t upset, but was obviously wondering why i wasn’t hovering over her chatting or taking pictures.  she immediately gave me a big smile and then went back to playing, but i had to interrupt her a couple times to snap this photo.  i love that she apparently loves playing with me as much as i enjoy her each and every day.  

(pardon the un-lady-like showing of doggie behind in the foreground….darla has a knack for ruining photos at the last second!)

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