Monday, February 28, 2011

Penny Lane

A few months ago, I shared the story of our puppy.

This weekend, she went to heaven.

She has blessed our lives. She was gentle, loving, sweet, affectionate, and wise. We saved her from an abused home. But really, she saved us.

These are some of the most recent pictures of our baby. We love you forever, Penny Lane.

Penny taught Reilly how to do "Niiiice." Reilly would grab and pat her, and she would sniff her, lick her, and nuzzle her affectionately. And then Reilly learned how to pet her "niiiice" and gently, and she loved to lay by her. Trying to get to Penny is what motivated Reilly is move more than anything else.

Penny Lane is in our ears and in our eyes. Now and always.

Puppy Love,

DR Mama

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Emptier of Baskets

This is Reilly.
Eater of fruit and veggies.
Drinker of breastmilk and water.
Giver of love.
Lover of giggling.
Spitter of the raspberries.
Singer of songs and sounds.
Chewer of...everything.
Dancer to any and all music. Even commercials.
Inspector of...everything.
Laugher at Daddy and Mama.

Emptier of baskets.

One day, my living room was clean.

Then my baby fell out of me.

Now it looks like this.

She empties baskets all day long. Then she gets sad when they are empty. And I refill them, and she is happy again. She is busy, I tell ya. She takes things out, studies them carefully, spins the item around in her hands, and then places it gently outside the basket.

I really don't know how things get so far away from's very perplexing how she reaches different things.

She is very busy. She will laugh at me, and play with me, or look at me briefly for a picture...but then she goes back to her extremely important business. She makes herself laugh, and babbles while flipping through her books. It is so fun to watch her learning and exploring, trying to move, and making her own decisions and choices.

Now I must go and chase around my busy girl. And maybe clean up. Again.

Love & Baskets,
DR Mama

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


We had an eventful weekend. It was pretty much the opposite of relaxing. Thank God we had a snow day yesterday, which allowed for some relaxation that we missed on the weekend.

The craziness started on Saturday. I was washing dishes, chatting on the phone, baby was napping, Hubby was ice fishing. And I was just minding my own business, gazing out the window to the forest ahead. And it was windy. I mean, really really windy. Like, Hubby said while he was fishing, he almost got knocked over by the wind. And then I heard a crack. A really loud, frightening, unnatural sounding crack. And then I saw a giant Hemlock tree falling straight toward my house. I had no idea how tall it was while I was watching it fall straight toward babygirl's bedroom window.

I screamed as I watched it fall. Luckily, my bff on the phone helped calm me down with her soothing words. It landed feet from my car. And took down another tree on the way, and landed on a wire.

Oh, that's just a tree being held up by a wire.

Clearly, nobody could get by. There's no other way to access our road, so when trees fall across the road, you're pretty much stuck. Until someone comes by with their chain saw.

What, people don't just have chain saws in there trucks where you live?

See the leftover half-tree on the right? That's where it broke.

Oddly enough, we didn't lose power from this. But we did later. We lost power in the afternoon, so we went out to town and had some lunch. By the time we got home, power was back on, so I made some dinner. Put baby down to bed. Snuggled up on the couch with some wine while dinner simmered.

Then, the power went out again. When we called the power company, they said it wasn't coming back on till 2am. It was 8pm. And we have electric heat. Not very awesome. So we ate some of the simmering dinner, and then went to Hubby's parents house since they have a fireplace. We brought puppy and baby, and packed for the night.

Fast forward to 4am. Generator is helping heat the house, baby is in our bed to make sure she is warm, heat is still not on, now we lost all phones as well, and I remembered something. I never shut off the stove. It would still be on a simmer if the power came back on. So Hubby had to go home in the wind and turn the stove off.

Fast forward to next day. Still. No. Power. We got a temporary space heater for our house, but we had no microwave to defrost baby's food, still no phones, and clearly, it was cold. They kept pushing back the estimated time that it would come back on. So I put baby in her snow suit, wrapped up in a blanket, and snuggled.

And she fell asleep.

My little cozy polar bear!

My sleeping girls! I was cleaning and painting, and trying not to go CRAZY from not having any power or phones. I tried to turn on the bathroom light about 17 times. Oh, and we don't have water when there is no power. So then there's that. I love not showering. Or flushing.

But then, I did get to stare at this face. And how bad could things be with this face nearby??

Hubby went to the store, and kept driving out the where we have cell phone service to try and get more information about the power.

Then I got an idea. Not everyone lost power, just our little area. So my family's house nearby still had power! So we packed a bag, and went on a little vaca night! It was so much fun. Then we got a little surprise. Hubby turned the computer on, since we had internet again, and found our a big storm was coming out of nowhere. We were expecting 8 inches! Then around 8pm, we got a phone call that he had a snow day! Rejoice. Even though we JUST started seeing ground, and blessed dirt, the last thing I wanted was for it to disappear again under more snow. I was very happy that Hubby was going to be home with us!

By the time we got home yesterday, we had power and phone back, thank God. It was an adventure, I tell ya. And now we have a giant half-a-tree in our driveway. I'm not sure how this this tree ours now? Do we have to chop it up and get rid of it? These are the questions I have this morning, as I stare at our new snow-covered hemlock.

Here's to Springtime coming!!

Love & Power,

Dirt Road Mama

Friday, February 18, 2011

Oot & Aboot

We are doing lots of things today. Different things. Busy bees. Painting, playing, singing, cleaning, organizing, re-organizing, crafting, babbling, and definitely enjoying the outdoors again. Reilly was a happy little girl in her little stroller with the sun shining on her. Not much time for writing today, I'm afraid! Happy Friday!!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Just Another Day in the Country

The other day, I was just chillin with babycakes, when I saw movement outside the window. Living down our dirt road, it usually means that it is a passing car. But when I went to look, it was not a car I saw, but deer. This is not odd, as there are approximately 76 deer running around our road daily. But the funny thing was how they were running.

Here's babycakes and I chillin...

The deer were running straight down the middle of the road!

You can't fully appreciate from this photo, but they were not in the woods, they were walking down the road like people!

There they go! In a straight line, following after one another.

Bye bye deer! I can't wait till you shed your winter fur, and emerge in the Spring with your beautiful golden amber coat. It shines in the sun, as you trot happily with your little fawn.
I can tell they are happy, from how they trot. And plus, they have little spotted babies beside them! Nothing makes a mama happier than a little spotted baby.

I will be trotting happily with my little spotted baby this Spring! I can't wait to show her Spring.
It's coming so soon. I can smell it. I smell the cold lifting, and being replaced with the sun streaming.

Love & Sunshine,

Dirt Road Mama

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


Nine months ago, our baby fell out of me.
Nine months before that, she was just a little poppy seed.

How quickly nine months goes! What will it be like nine months from now? I wonder what magic God will bring.

Because that's what it's like having our little 9 months old chickie. It's just magic. She is so unbelievable, in so many ways. Let's recount some of her amazing 9-month-old magic, shall we?

1. Her eyes are still blue. Which means she will be our little blue-eyed beauty, for always. I'll never forget when I was 8 months pregnant in those moments before we close our eyes, Hubby and I were dreaming of what our baby would look like. I said, "I hope baby has your lips." (which she does), then said, "What do you picture our baby to look like?" And he always said the same thing: "I don't know why, but when I picture our babies, I picture them with blond hair and blue eyes." And then he was RIGHT. And then she came out, and the doctor said, "Her eyes won't be their true color until she is 9 months old." But Hubby and I knew she would have those ocean blue eyes forever.

2. She is SO observant. And curious, which go hand-in-hand. Like, she finds tiny little fibers of thread on the floor 4 feet away from her, and she will try and get to it, and pick it up, and eat it. Needless to say, vacuuming is my life. And she loves things that are interesting and different, ie: anything that she is not supposed to have. Here is a little story to show what I mean. I have a basket that says "Baby Things" embroidered on it, and I kept it in the living room filled with diapers, wipes, the charger for her monitor, my breastmilk storage bags, breast feeding cream, her nail file, things like that. Things I liked to have on hand in the living area. Well, no more. I had to fill it, instead, with useless things that she could safely get into and chew on. Like burp cloths, bibs, toy blocks, and her balls. Do I need these things on hand? Not really. Can they just go in the toy basket? Yes. But now, this basket is different and intriguing and fun for babygirl to pull things out of. She loves the basket, she flips it over, she thinks she is doing something slightly not allowed - it's perfect.

Until yesterday, while I was cooking, and she got that weird quietness about her that means she is up to no-baby-good. So I turned around and said, "Babygiiirl....whatcha doing..." , and I saw something teeny tiny in her hands - crap, what could she have gotten? So I go over, and see the Baby Things basket upside down in her lap. And in her hands? A "Made in China" sticker. She flipped the basket over, and found the teeny Made In China sticker, and decided that THIS was the most interesting thing to play with. Slash chew on. And this concludes my explanation of curious/freakishly observant Reilly.

3. She says "Da-da", "Na-na" (only when she's upset), "Ba-ba" and...wait for it..."MA MA"!!!! My day of glory has come!!! And she said it for the first time on VALENTINE'S DAY! Which is technically one day into her tenth month, but I still wanted to share it today. She also started saying Ba-Ba on the same day! It's very funny - she sticks her bottom lip out when she says Mama and Baba.

4. She eats Puffs! Like a little pro! And she is getting her Pincer down perfectly.

5. She now eats all the things that we eat (for the most part), except all blended up into tiny bits. Not pureed smooth, kind of coarsely. I'll be doing a post about her foods soon!

6. She has water from a bottle once a day - which makes me laugh. I feel like she's a little adult with her water bottle. We still need work with the sippy cup, and she needs the hydration with her new foods, so we're sticking to a bottle.

7. She is literally getting prettier every day, in my opinion. I can't stop kissing at her and marveling at her. And telling her she's pretty. Confidence will not be a problem, I am sure. :)

8. She can get up on all fours! And she rock-rock-rocks. She also scoots backwards on her belly, and can spin around in a cricle on her belly. So with the spinning, and the back-scooting, she can get anywhere she really wants to get.

9. She can STAND!! With help of course. I pick her up and put her in the position, and she will hold on to a surface and stand. She has never looked prouder than when she is standing. It is the greatest and happiest face.

10. She is imitating SO many things. Any sounds I make with my mouth, like clicking or lip smacking, she will try to imitate it with hers. It's hilarious. Yesterday I was making kissy noises, and she was trying to make the same sound. She always imitates movements - she started shaking her head back and forth after Hubby and I were doing it while dancing with her. Noe she does it to be funny.

11. She still loves being changed and lays there so happily, laughing and babbling the whole time.

12. She is happy, smiling, or laughing for 95% of every single day. She has even started to laugh while playing by herself, which is the cutest thing ever. I'll be in the kitchen, and she'll be facing away from me playing with something, and suddenly start giggling. It seems like the beginning of playing "pretend" and using her imagination.

13. She loves babies, or any children. She will squeal and stare when we see children in the stores. And this little 2 year old boy was in a shopping cart opposite us, and he is looking warily at Reilly as she is staring him down and kicking excitedly. His mom was shopping, and suddenly he goes, "Mama...that baby is starin' at me..." all nervous. His mom and I started cracking up.

Let's end on lucky 13, in honor of our cutie-patootie.

Thank you God, for our 9 amazing months with our little angel pie! I love every day with her. Every every day.

Love & 9,

DR Mama

Monday, February 14, 2011

My Valentine

It started with the two of us.

There was kisses, letters, emails, laughter, goodbyes, late-night phone calls, and star gazing.

There was dancing, road trips, cafes, weekends, movies, trust, silliness, proms, date nights, and more kisses.

And then there was growing, and promises, and rings, and vows. Long Island, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, and all that is in between.

At the center of it all there is God. He made us for each other, and brought us together. He keeps us strong, and blesses us daily. He helps us through challenges, and shows us what forgiveness is.

And then there was her.

And then we were us.

And then, there was love. There was always love.

I love you, my Valentine. My boyfriend, my fiance, my husband, my love. You make me giggle and you make me melt. Your love surrounds me and lifts me up. I love having you as my one and only, always.

Love & more Love,

Dirt Road Mama

Friday, February 11, 2011

Me and Her

I kiss her all day long, just because I don't like being far away from her face.
I dance and jump like crazy, to make her giggle.
I pray that she will be a content and happy person, just as she is now.
I laugh at her all day long.
I nap with her on occasion, because we deserve it, don't we babygirl?

Sometimes I forget to re-clip my nursing bra, hence the strangeness in the above picture.
I miss real bras. Victoria? As in, the one with the Secret? Can you please make nursing bras?

After all, that is what our boobies were made for. The nursing. You should embrace the reason for the boobies, and support them in their finest hour. Thank you.

We are friends, of the best kind.
I want to teach her everything I know, everything she needs to know.
One little thing at a time.

But mostly, I want to play with her. And pray with her. And surround her with the love that her Daddy and I share.

I think my twenty-fourth will be my favorite year yet.
I'm not going to let it fly by me.
Love Every Day,
Dirt Road mama

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Mama's Birthday!

Yesterday was my birthday. We have had many fun happenings leading up to yesterday, starting with the delivery of many mystery packages. It was great fun having package after package delivered, not knowing what they could be. And it took restraint not looking at the return addresses!

And then Daddy decided he wanted to show Reilly what he got Mama. The two of them were in cahoots on the birthday secrets! Reilly helped Daddy unwrap the packages.

But these two right here, are the best gifts of all.

The silly, lovable, adorable pair they are.

I started my day with cards from both Hubby and Reilly baby, and the rest of it was filled with so much love from those who love me most. That's what birthday's are about, I think. Making the person feel how much you love them, letting them know how happy you are that they were born.

This year...I feel so very loved.

Love at 24,

Dirt Road Mama

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

In My Nook

When the e-readers first came out, I was against them. I like my books. I like feeling them, holding them, smelling them. Yes, I said smelling. New or old, I love the smell. But then, I thought, this might be interesting.

Brand new books, instantly! Brand new books, cheaper! Brand new books, with free samples before you buy! Or really old books, if I want! And, you can share them. As in, lend them to your friends for 2 weeks for absolute FREE!
So Hubby got me one for my birthday. And I am obsessed, let me tell you. I take it everywhere with me, like my Gameboy when we were little. Or my new doll that I brought to church on Christmas. I bring it places that I will not be able to read, places it would make no sense to read. Just in case. I have about 11 free book samples downloaded, to test 'em out before I purchase.

FYI: Snooki's new book - don't waste your time. I downloaded it out of pure intrigue, and the fact that it was free. Don't even waste your time pressing "Download" to read the free version. I lost brain cells reading it. End of story.

The best part though, might be the case that Hubby picked out for it. He knows me, I tell ya. I knew it as soon as I opened it. I couldn't have picked out one more perfect for myself.

It is brown, weathered looking leather. It reminds me of a cowboy boot. And even smells like an old book. A Nook that smells like a book! They should market these covered that way. I bet you sales would increase if people knew their Nook could smell like books.

I asked Hubby last night why he thinks it's called a Nook. I think it's because people like to read in nooks. I told him that if there was a small corner of a room, near a window, I would rather read there than on a couch. I don't know why. Or in a window seat. I love me a window seat. Not a cheesy little tiny one, though. A real, sprawl out, maybe take a nap, window seat.

Ocean views are just a bonus.

I just thought of another reason I love the Nook. Epaper. The screen is NOT a computer screen. Picture how when you are sick, or have a headache, or are pregnant and have morning sickness, you can't really look at a computer screen? The light makes you squint and makes your brain hurt? Well, this screen is made of epaper. You need a light to read it, just like a book. It LOOKS like it's ink on a page, but then it moves and can be controlled like a computer. It's mind-boggling when you watch it!

Also, I am in love with libraries. When I'm bored, or have time to kill in town, I go there. But my nook won't stop me - now I have a baby!! Mommy and me is at the library, kiddie books are at the library, and we can bring them home and smell them. I mean read them. Therefore, I don't have to let go of my library-going just because of my nook. Reilly? Want to go to the LIBRARY and smell books??

Oh, she wants to.

Gotta run. Baby's napping. Mama's folding laundry, and maybe a little Nook time. Who knows! Maybe there's a new book out that I can read a free sample of and then buy at a discounted price!! There is a BOOKSTORE AT MY FINGERTIPS, PEOPLE!!

Hubby? Thank you. I love it. I love you.

Love & BN,

Dirt Road Mama

Monday, February 7, 2011

Some Things to Report

1. Rei Rei has an Uncle Eric who like to take amazing pictures of her on his fancy phone.

2. Her eyes are officially staying blue, which I knew since her day of birth. Even though everyone told me they would turn brown. Mama knows.

3. Reilly makes funny faces.

4. Reilly has a cute nose. It resembles a button. She got it from me. But hers is cuter.

5. She has 2 bottom teeth, but that is all for now. She got her bottom teeth months ago, and we're holding steady with just the two. I love them. We pretend to brush them with our finger before she goes to bed.

6. I think a picture of Reilly could make anyone smile. I really do.

7. I am not biased! How dare you suggest such a thing.

8. All of the above information can be confirmed in the photograph below.

See? You just smiled. Number 6 - confirmed. Affrimative. Over and out.
I am obsessed with that child and her Jack-O-Lantern faces.
Love & Holy Adorable,
Dirt Road Mama

Friday, February 4, 2011

Pwetty Babygirl

Recently, my friend Kate are her BF came to visit for the weekend. And took adorable pictures of my babygirl. Well, they took pictures. Let's be honest, Reilly made them adorable. Ha! Teasing.

Anyway, I just love this picture of her. I was getting dressed, ready for her photo session with our family photographer. Okay, fine, she's not really just our photographer, but Reilly is the first baby on her homepage. And she's known Reilly since before she was born. And then with her first tiny little itsy bitsy newborn shoot. I can't believe we only have one more photo session left! When Reilly is ONE. Anywho, I digress.

I was dressing her, combing her hair, talking to her, telling her how pretty she was, putting on her tiny shoes. And Kate got this picture.

This is how she looks at me every day. This is how she watches me while I get ready in the morning, while I put my makeup on, while I fold the laundry. Always watching, always learning. I just love her. I'm so happy that I have this picture of how my baby looks at me.

I could stare at her all day. Okay, maybe I will.

Love & Pwetty Pwofile,

Dirt Road Mama

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Bye Bye Bumper!

I started realizing that girlfriend was getting a little too curious in that crib of her. She was grabbing and moving and disappearing behind bumpers. For two of her naps, I looked at the monitor and saw that she had lifted the bumper up, and was trying to grab the tag on her Diaper Stacker through the crib rails. The bumper was no longer protection, but a big fluffy toy!

I came in to get her from a nap, and found this.

Oh, hi Mama. What's up? I was know...napping.

See the tag at the top? That was what we were aiming for.

So now, we had to remove the bumpers. Wah. My baby used to be an infant. Now she is an infant who moves around a lot. She is still an infant, you see. One day she will be an infant who walks. And talks. And then an infant who goes to school.

I live in denial, see. Hubby comes home, and I say, "Oh, I had to take off the bumpers. Because she started moving them and maneuvering them and I was afraid she would learn to stand and climb out. No big deal. It's not like she's growing up or anything. Want to make another baby?"

Love & Wiggly Baby,

DR Mama