Sunday, November 24, 2013

A Few Things

Just when I had entirely given up on it, I found my lost library book!  It was in a plastic bin in our storage area that was full of rarely-used kitchen items (a sushi set, a fondue pot, some seasonal placemats).  Do we really need to talk about who put it there?  Hint:  His last name rhymes with Muckworth.  I will be returning it to the library with my receipt.  My perfect record as a library patron shall be restored!

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I have a bracelet I wear everyday that has Eliza's name on it.  I also have a necklace with a disc for her and a disc for Zuzu on it that I wear fairly often, but I chose a bracelet for perma-wear because it's something that I wear no matter what my outfit is or what other jewelry I have on (kind of like my wedding ring).  I still give the bracelet two kisses every night when I take it off.  It's become a little ritual.  Anyway, I haven't added Zuzu's name to the bracelet, although I could.  I just don't feel the need.  She makes her presence known.  She doesn't need a bracelet to prove that she existed.

Anyway, Zuzu has been noticing this bracelet and will look at it and study it.  So I always say, "This is Mommy's Eliza bracelet."  And now she says "Eliza."  In fact, I just asked her to say Eliza, and she said it and then grinned and pointed at my bracelet.  David heard it, too, so it's not just in my head.  It's sweet that she's saying her name.  It's heartbreaking that she associates the name with a bracelet instead of a sister.

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Zuzu has started talking to my cell phone.  She and Siri will have conversations.  A lot of the conversations go like this:

Zuzu:  Bye-bye!  Bye-bye!
Siri:  You'll need to unlock your iPhone first.

Zuzu:  Ahh-baah.  Bah-bye!
Siri:  I'm sorry. I don't understand that.

Today was my favorite:

Zuzu:  Bah!  Aaaiiiiiii-yaiiii!  Bah-bah-BAH.
Siri:  You're certainly entitled to that opinion.

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So I may have mixed feelings about the holidays, but I'm a little excited about a couple of crafty projects I have going on.  Plot spoiler:  I'm making a 2-dimensional felt Christmas tree for Zuzu to decorate.  I also got my Christmas cards ordered already, and I feel pretty satisfied with the way they represent our family.  I'm also pretty proud of myself because I bought a Groupon for my Christmas cards and saved a bundle that way.  Yay for money saving.

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Do you think you have a "uniform" that you wear more often than not?  I was getting coffee with two friends last week and when I sat down with my drink, I complimented one of them on her outfit.  It was super cute--a dress/tunic with pockets over leggings with tall brown boots and a scarf.  She started laughing because it turns out that she and my other friend had just been talking about how she was wearing a very "Brooke-like" outfit.  I guess she was right--I'd totally wear what she was wearing.  I just didn't realize until that moment that I basically wear the same thing everyday--a dress or tunic with leggings and boots or flats or booties, mixing it up with a scarif and a cardigan or jacket.  I mean, I do occasionally wear dresses with tights and heels or dress pants with button down shirts or sweaters, but clearly those are not my "signature" look.  Haha.

I think I do this in part because I am obsessed with these leggings.  They are fleece lined, which makes them super warm and nice and opaque.  I basically want to live in them.  In fact, last night when I got home, I changed out of skinny cords and dug a pair of these out of the dirty clothes and wore them around the house even though they had diaper cream smeared on one leg.

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I snuggled Zuzu for an extra long time before nap today. She wasn't particularly fussy and she almost always goes down for a nap without struggle, but I just spent some extra time breathing in her neck and rubbing her fuzzy head and holding on to her.  It was the quietest, sweetest minutes of my day, and I still managed to run errands and make dinner and vacuum the dog hair of the sofa.  She is just so busy these days--always on a mission rearranging kitchen cabinets, or carrying one shoe around the house, apparently with great purpose, or chasing Cooper, or unpacking everything in her toy bucket(s).  I love it when she has nothing better to do than lounge on Mama's lap.

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This weekend is bustling around here as we try to get the house cleaned up and ready to host Thanksgiving.  My in-laws were just here a couple of weeks ago, so for Thanksgiving we're having my parents and brother come in for the weekend.  David's dad and his wife are going to drive up for the day, and a friend of mine who doesn't have family in town and decided not to make the trek home until Christmas is going to come over.  That makes 10 people total, plus Zuzu, which should be a good number.  I think it will be fun to have a mix of people we don't usually see all at once, and I've made some "table topics" questions for people to draw out of a basket.  (They are very fancy because I wrote with a GOLD PEN on cardstock.  Somebody pin this, stat.)  My questions are things like, "Which political party is the worst and why?" and "What do you think people have to do to avoid going to hell?"

Okay, obviously I'm kidding.  The questions are much less divisive and are more about memories or hypothetical situations.  But I hope it will be fun to do something a little different and get people talking about things we might not typically cover at the dinner table.

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One more week of NaNoWriMo.  I'll be honest, the second half of the month has been waaaaay harder than the first half, and the structure of my novel is pretty weak.  I've started just kind of writing major scenes and not messing with transitions, and I know my timeline got messed up, which frustrates me!  But I keep reminding myself that the whole point of this month is to keep writing, not start editing.  If I want to fix this, I can go back and do it later.  But I have to get it WRITTEN first.  So I'm still plugging away, somewhat less enthusiastically and more resentfully than I was at the start of the month.  It's almost over!  I can't wait to have time to watch TV or exercise or blog (have you missed me?) or work on projects that don't involve my computer...  I should gain back an hour to an hour and a half everyday, which will feel like a Christmas gift in itself.

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And since I've been short on words here this month, I leave you with a bunch of pictures.

Zuzu's first taste of wine.  She grabbed my glass off a side table when I ran downstairs to switch the laundry.  Parenting fail.

Sometimes the time it takes for me to make her dinner is the MOST DIFFICULT part of the day.  For both of us, obviously.

Just chilling in her crib.  I discovered she's happy to read books while I shower and dry my hair in the morning.  Win-win!

It was a windy day but weirdly warm--almost 70 degrees out--when we were in Nevada, MO last weekend.

Big girl on the playground.

First time on a merry-go-round.  She loved it, and so did her buddy Ellie Kate.

Giving Bubba Coop some love.

Playing in the leaves with Ellie Kate.

Sitting pretty.

Striking a pose with Coop in the morning before school.

This photo got lots of compliments on IG--Zuzu is totally strutting it and looking adorable.

I neglected to post on IG this picture that was taken moments later.  It is obviously devastating to be forced to come inside when all you want to do is play with wet and muddy leaves in the freezing cold outdoors.


  1. Zuzu is awesome! I love the extra snuggles. And I love the wandering the house with great purpose!

    At least your uniform isn't sweats like mine. Ha, my husband likes it when I dress up and put on jeans.

    I'm sure your thanksgiving will be great

  2. Sooo cute!!! Luke was very impressed with the pictures and also the book background of your blog.

    Can you send me the felt tree directions? I have been wanting to do one of those this year for the boys but haven't had a chance to check pinterest yet for ideas.

    Yay I can't wait for you to spend more time blogging again!

  3. I HAVE missed you! Earlier today I thought "Brooke hasn't blogged as much of late" so I appreciate the update.

    1. I think it's sweet that Zuzu is starting to say her sisters name and in time, she will learn the association is not between name and bracelet but name and sister and just how special Eliza is to her family. It's not what it should be, but it's a start and a testiment to how well you are parenting both girls.

    2. You should play cards against humanity for Thanksgiving. That would prove to be entertaining.

    3. My signature look these days is yoga or sweat pants. And a comfy shirt. so hot.

  4. My signature look is Caroline's signature look...and I'm not preggers! When I was not in this postpartum body (or when I attempt to look decent) my look is your look, but probably much less stunning. Leggings and a tunic is how I roll. And a comfy boot is key in Canada.

    When you wrote those fake questions out, I for a split second thought you were being serious and was all, "dem be sum smart tawking folk dey is...".

    I've always loved your bracelet. I haven't got a thing figured out about how or when Theodore will learn to know about Alexander...and I worry it will only ever mean a middle name and not his brother.

    I finished my Christmas cards this weekend too. I went over so many layouts and options. I agonized over it really. I included Alexander. I hope it's not too "in your face" for some family members to see. This is my first year doing a card with both my children (correction, ANY children) Hard that one is being represented with a name and not as a grinning 21 month old. I'd love to see your card. I'm sure it's beautiful.

  5. I love Zuzu.

    B totally chats with Siri as well. It's downright hilarious.

    I also think it's sweet and not at all strange to only have Eliza on your bracelet. And how heartbreaking (and comforting? Such a paradox) that Zuzu is now saying her name. Can you just IMAGINE them being actual sisters who interact? I think about this all the time with my boys. It will never escape me.

    And congrats on that library book. What a zany place to find it (says the woman who finds LEGO pieces in her kitchen utility drawer).

  6. Recently discovered your blog and love your honesty and willingness to share about grief. My daughter was stillborn in July. I blog over at On A Butterfly's Wings. Also, I love fleece leggings. :)