"For You O Lord are a shield about me, You are the glory and lifter of my head. Psalm 3:3

"For You O Lord are a shield about me, You are the glory and lifter of my head. Psalm 3:3

Monday, April 30, 2012

The Berries

There is a little, growing nugget in my belly, we're 25 weeks now.  Time for this sweet one to have a name.

It's a girl.  

When those words came from the ultrasound tech, Chris had this starry eyed look about him and said how we could call her Belle.  It's stuck with me.  So many beautiful names to choose from but we kept coming back to Bella...Belle.  
It fits our girl.  So we've decided that's it!

Bella Jane
"Beautiful, God is gracious"
She will be here soon and good groceries we're excited.  

Spring time is wrapping up, school will be out soon, we'll have some time off from Ali's therapy, and ballet is concluding with recital in a few weeks.  I'll admit excitement of no schedule or anywhere to be is brewing in this mama's heart.  The bucket list of summer fun has been made and that's all we have on the agenda.

More time for cooking up new things.  This past week we happily trimmed from our herb garden and made Pesto.  Lemon Basil Pesto Sauce to be exact.

It also makes a fantastic rub for pork tenderloin or chicken.

Lemon Basil Pesto
2 c. basil (we used lemon and sweet)
3 cloves garlic
salt and pepper
1/3 c. pine nuts
1/3 c. parmesan cheese
1/2 c. olive oil
splash of lemon juice
pinch nutmeg
--pulse it in a food processor and throw it on some pasta

Um, yes please.

This weekend was a blend of inspired moments of productivity and chasing babies.

Sister must be chased these days for a few reasons, one being this face.  I mean this face screams I am up to no good and must be watched and chased.
My girl is cruising, on mission, taking lots of steps and you best not get in her way.  She is constantly giving me kisses and at the same time showing me her independence.  She makes this face with piercing blues and it says I got this, mama.

I know she does.

I see her tenderness mixed with fearless drive and agenda.  She falls down a lot and gets up every time, usually without a tear.  But this weekend, she fell off her little bike and couldn't help herself.  I scooped up her little body and told her I was here, that everything was okay.  Sometimes in the middle of the night, I slip into her nursery for the same scoop hold.
Just because.
She really is the berries.

Along with these other babies and my hunk a burnin' man.  We stopped at a local taco stand and ordered one of everything, because that's how we roll.

And then we saw it, the trigger of memories of the hot African sun streaming into my tent, browning our shoulders, and giving off light into the night hours for soccer with barefooted village orphans...Orange Fanta.

Funny how a little bottle of soda can flood my mind of such a special place.

Emma asked when we're going.  Some day when you are older, we will go back there.  Anyone who has been knows there's no place like it.

But the place we crave to be at for now is home.  Wherever we are, Sophie pleads for home.
So we go and do, this week, dance pictures.  And then we headed home.

Chris went all into this-feels-like-prom-I-need-a-shotgun mode.  Like this snarling bear was woken from slumber when he saw his little girls all dressed up.
I love it when he does this.  Love it.

 We may be taking up soccer next year.

These days, when possible, we make our way back to the nest.

I must say Sophie is right, I love being home.  There is plenty to pull us away from our haven of morning baths, afternoon cups of coffee, and evenings in the driveway with grimy babies greased in popsicles and sunscreen.  And we like those away from the nest things too.
Because away from home, we make plans, see friends, and hear a strong heart beat of a healthy baby girl.  And sisters sit and tell the nurse her name, how she's coming, how they love her already.
Being away from home is the berries too.


The summer of nothingness is coming and that will be the berries too.

Here's to princesses slurping cereal at the table, messes in every room of the house, moments when we say we're sorry, and the memories we will make when Bella Jane is welcomed into the nest.

Now that will be the berries.
Happy week to all!

Monday, April 23, 2012

A Simple Weekend

It was one of those weekends when you realize the sweetness slipping through the hour glass of season and time, knowing the curtain will soon close on this type Saturday.

When little bodies tip toe down stairs whispering for cartoons, climbing into our bed wedging their way between us.  Eventually squirming and asking for breakfast.  We'll trickle out of our room, grabbing sweet Alice once she's awake.  More cartoons, a homemade breakfast, clutching coffee cups over conversation of the wide open day.  The possibilities of simplicity and nothingness on the horizon.

The weekend has arrived.

And we were prepared with Brown Sugar Muffins, we're still using it up the massive stash of sugar in as many ways as possible.  I still have no clue where it all came from.
Hence, more brown sugared products and this recipe was a cinch.

When it came to the "sprinkle" brown sugar and cinnamon in the center of the cupcakes before topping off with remaining batter part, my girls didn't grasp the concept of less is more.  They dumped heaping spoonfulls, which made for caved in muffins.
We were going for the rustic-caved-in-look anyways.

Last week concluded with mama catching a little tummy bug, scrapping our Friday plans, getting off to a slow start for the weekend.
No worries though, we were not deterred.

We've heard about this secret place tucked away behind some houses.  A special area lined with bamboo and heavenly scents of honeysuckle blooms.  Weeping willow branches cascading down over soft, green grass.

We spent our morning there in pure delight.

The rest of the weekend was the berries, I wouldn't change a thing.

There were plenty of sour moments too.  Plenty of moments with little ones struggling to choose well, grown ups struggling to respond well, and the sour aftertaste of a moment that was once savored and sweet.

But I wouldn't change those either.

The sweetness that reigns supreme, is watching her pedal fast around our chalk lined driveway with her sun kissed cheeks, hands gripping a sippy cup.  Seeing her face light up when she feels her baby sister-to-be thumping around, telling us she's coming soon.
Knowing we're in the presence of precious gifts from the Father and that His grace is sufficient, His power is made perfect in weakness.

The weekend delivered, sweet and sour tastes wrapped up in one.

Happy week to all!