October 27, 2009


This is Ben. This is my first post. I'm not much for words and certainly not as talented as my clever spouse, so you can probably skip this post and wait patiently for the next one. But for those of you who have two minutes to spare and would like to know a few of the ways Sadie has changed in the last few months, read on....

She now drinks out of a sippy cup. It took us a really long time to get her to do this, so if feels like a big deal to us. It was a struggle to get her off the bottle.

Sometimes when she falls she doesn't cry. Our little Sadie has very tender feelings. And though, often when she falls she's not hurt physically you would think she was by her dramatic crying and big alligator tears. Lately, however, she's having so much fun running around that when she falls she gets right back up and continues on her happy rampage.

She likes me! For a long time Sadie didn't like me very much. Despite my best efforts - she was a mama's girl. She wouldn't even let me hold her. The tide is starting to turn, so to speak. She'll sit on my lap, enjoys playtime at night with me, and her face lights up when I get home from work and she runs to me and gives me hugs and kisses. Love it.

She sleeps through the night. After 19 long months of little to no sleep and nighttime feedings and cryings our little one has finally come of age. Though it's a challenge at times to get her to fall asleep, once she's down she's typically down for the night. I feel 5 years younger (but don't look it - that's for sure).

Sadie is really understanding what we say to her. When we ask her to put her shoes on she goes into her room and can usually find a matching pair and sometimes even comes out wearing them. Tonight she fell down on her face and Alicia asked her where she got hurt and she pointed to her nose. It's so nice to be able to communicate with her!

For those of you still reading - thank you for your time and attention. I hope you have enjoyed my update about our little girl. Talk to you next year!

*I am Ben Johnson and I approve this message*

October 22, 2009

Fall Is A Floridian's Spring

This week's I discovered that my favorite season is now fall. Not because we have the changing of leaves or beautiful apply orchards or the trademark 'crispness' in the air.

The reason I love fall is because finally after 4 long, hot months the weather is becoming tolerable again. Finally I can start going on outdoor walks without endangering my life or my child's health. Finally I can get into the car without worrying about burning myself. Now I can have worms in my compost pile without them getting cooked to death. Now I can sleep with the windows open at night. Now I can meet Ben for lunch at the park. Now I have look forward to 8 beautiful months of perfect weather.

Northerns probably look forward to spring the same way Floridians look forward to fall. After their long winters of being stuck indoors and only being permitted outside in layers of cumbersome clothes - spring comes. Same thing in Florida, except our enemy is the hot summer's day when you can only go outside if wearing a bathing suit and you have to have a body of water closeby to jump into.

As a teenager I loved summertime, but motherhood has changed that. It takes me an hour to pack up all the gear for the pool or beach and another hour to clean everything up afterwards. Also, swimming is not as leisurely when trying to control a toddler running around the pool. No ma'am - that's just stressful. Maybe next summer will be different, but these past two summers we have spent most of our time indoors. And I was going crazy!

But, fall is here! And fall brings the excitement of Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years. Three months of holidays with lots of vacation time spent with family. What could be better? I already feel healthier with all the fresh air, extra exercise, and anticipation of the months to come.

October 20, 2009

Stephany's Baby Shower

My cousin Stephany is going to soon have a little baby boy, Ethan Carter. We celebrated with them this past weekend at my parent's house. We also celebrated Aunt Sharon's BIG 6-0 birthday.

(Shown above: Stephany and Mike, the proud parents-to-be.)

(Big brother Trae above. He did all the decorating for the party...it turned out great!)

(Mike shown above with new toy monkey on head)

(Above: Aunt Susie shown looking nicely, as always)

(Aunt Sharon, also known as 'Birthday Girl', shown opening a present)

(Gigi, my 90 year old grandma shown above)

(Aunt Debbie can be seen above looking happy and content)

(Sharon and Trae shown in a sweet embrace)

(Stephany shown opening presents....Aunt CharChar made this outfit)

October 15, 2009

Sadie's Favoritest Game

This is what Sadie wants to do for hours and hours every day:



And again and again and again....

Life Without Cereal

(Sadie and Ben shown above greatly enjoying their breakfast.)

So, I've just read this ridiculously interesting book by Michael Pollan called The Omnivore's Dilemma. It's about food. When I say "about food" I mean about all aspects of food: production, consumption, evolution, emotion, health, community, environment, and philosophy. It was fascinating and frustrating, but I would highly recommend it.

Well, I've decided to try to eat more natural foods and less processed foods after reading about all the weird chemicals we're eating in industrialized food. My selected starting point, which is my main source of processed food and my highest intake of sugar for the day, was cereal. You must know, though, that I am a passionate and loyal lover of cereal. So, this was a really hard challenge for me. I am now almost three weeks into my no-cereal-trial and I'm finally no longer missing it.

Some foods we eat instead are cream of wheat, steel cut oats (a lot!), toast with peanut butter and honey, yogurt and granola, bananas, kringler, eggs and potatoes, applesauce, hootenanny pancakes, crepes, and sour dough bread. Who wants cereal when we can eat that for breakfast? Steel cut oats we probably eat the most often. They are actually quite delicious, especially when sprinkled with brown sugar and/or fruit. They are also so cheap!

I suppose my biggest obstacle is the time investment. Breakfast cereals are so convenient - I have to admit. On the weekends we tend to make something exciting; but on weekdays, when time is an issue, we just start a pot of cream of wheat or oats or make toast with a side of fruit. We're adjusting to the change and I'm even starting to enjoy my new breakfasts.

This was a one month trial, so cereals are not going to be banished forever. However, I seriously doubt I'll eat or feed Sadie it as a daily ritual any more. Maybe just on those really rushed mornings. All things in moderation, right?

(Shown above: kringler. My most favorite breakfast pastry.)

(Sadie loves Kringler, too.)

(This is Ben's favorite breakfast - Hootenanny Pancakes.)

October 11, 2009

Sadie Says Please

Please take note of how oddly Sadie says, "please". She kind of says Nemo instead of please and moves her lips and face up and down a lot. Odd, no? What do you make of it Christy?

October 07, 2009

Forgive Me Dear Sadie

I've officially earned myself a place in the "Top 10 Worst Mother" of all time list!

It all started on a lovely Monday morning when I decided to try to secure a spot on the "Top 10 Best Wives" of all time list by cleaning out the garage for my over-worked, never-present husband who has been trying to do it for the last 2 months so he can park in the garage and not have dew on his car in the morning.

All was going well. I had nicely organized piles - attic, goodwill, and trash. Sadie and I were making serious progress. The nice neighbor lady saw me outside and wanted to chat. So, we stood in the blazing hot sun for 20 minutes talking about kids, Russia, and our desires to move. I started feeling a little dizzy and so tried (for 5 minutes) to politely end the conversation. At last I finally successfully did so, and as I started walking back to the house I realized I was really not feeling good. My weird blinking problem started happening which is what I do right before I (1) throw up and/or (2) pass out.

Side note: I have a strange problem where I pass out randomly. It doesn't happen for common reasons like dehydration or overheating (which were the problems this time). Instead it tends to (but not always) happens in the middle of the night and usually involves me hitting my head really hard and scaring Ben half to death and him cleaning up my throw up - poor, poor Ben. However, my family (who have been pestering me to get it checked out) will be relieved to know that Uncle Jim suffers from the exact same thing! He says it's Vasovagal Syndrome and they can't do anything for it but it's not life threatening just extremely uncomfortable and scary. End of side note.

So, as I was getting into the garage I realized I had about 5 to 10 seconds before I would pass out. I could go back and scoop up Sadie and carry her to the house, but it would result in me passing out for sure and her taking a tumble in my arms.

Instead I turned around to see Sadie was following me into the house, and called her name as I headed straight inside dumped water over my head, took two gulps of water, and layed down. Sure enough, I went to la-la land for a few moments, but continued to call her name before and after I passed out.

Silly Sadie, though, must have wanted to see if the neighbor girl was still outside because as I was miserably laying on the tile calling her name I began to hear her crying. I crawled out to the garage to see her coming towards me - crying. She ran to me and continued to cried. I thought she must have fallen or was offended I had left for a minute (it doesn't take much to make her cry). Her crying turned to screeching so I looked down to see if she had a scraped knee and what did I see....fire ants!! All over her feet! Dozens of them!!!

I smacked the heck out of them!

Then I put her in the bathtub and tried every antidote for fire ant bites that I could find on the internet. All while feeling very light headed still, I might add!

The poor baby wanted to be held the rest of the day and cried any time she put weight on her feet.

Broke. My. Heart!

(Sadie's sad, pathetic ant bitten foot shown above.
Ben and I counted 75 bites on her left foot and around 30 on her right.)

(Above: Sadie's foot plastered with Calamine lotion.)

(Her smile still works great though!)

Happy note: After only one day Sadie was back to her normal, happy self.

October 01, 2009

A 'Conversation' With Sadie

This was my Sunday afternoon conversation with Sadie:

Me: "Hey Sadie! You want to have a little interview and practice your tricks?"

(Sadie's thought: Well, I had some plans to torment Shadow,
but I guess I could squeeze you in.)

Me: "Okay, I'll take that as a 'yes'!"

Me: "First question - how old are you?"

(Sadie's thought: Let's see....how old was I again?)

Me: "No silly! You're not three; you're only one, remember? Did you forget?"

(Sadie's thought: I could have sworn I was three!)

Me: "Let's try an easier one....Sadie, where's your elbow?"

(Sadie's thought: Elbow, elbow, elbow....oh ya, isn't that over here?)

Me: "Good job! Hey Sade, I forget, how old are you today, again?"

(Sadie's thought: This lady can be so forgetful sometimes!
Doesn't she know I'm four??)

Me: "You're four now!!! Wow - that's funny, I thought you were only one."

Me: "Where's your belly button."

(Sadie's thought: I hate it when she puts me in these frilly dresses!)

Me: "Having trouble finding it? That's okay! What about your nose? Can you find your nose?"

(Sadie's thought: I know that's around here somewhere!)

Me: "Actually, those are you toes, not your nose. But, close, really close!"

Me: "What about your Flexor digitorum superficialis...where's that?"

(Sadie's thought: The WHAT??)

Me: "Just kidding!"

(Sadie's thought: Not so funny Mom!)

Me: "Last question...you want to go eat Oreos with peanut butter before Dad comes home? It'll be our little secret!"

(Sadie's thought: I love my mom!)

Me: "Love you too Sadie!"