Thursday, December 4, 2008

My personal court jester

Living with a two year old is sort of like living with a tiny practical joker... or a prankster... or maybe a court jester. You never know what you're going to find waiting for you when you come around the corner. You might find your favorite makeup brush used to clean the toilet. Or perhaps she will have painted the walls with your blush. Maybe she will slather herself in butt paste and wake you from your much needed nap. All of the wipes and diapers could be strewn about everywhere or she might get into the pantry and pull out all of your canned goods and hide them under the bed so when you go to use the tomato paste (that you KNOW you have) you can't find it, thereby ruining dinner. Whatever it might be, its always messy, sometimes tragic (when a beloved possession is annihilated), and inconvenient. But somehow, it always makes me smile, even laugh, as I try to remember to appreciate her humor and savor these days when her imagination runs wild. A huge grin from her helps too :)

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Happy Jack

Jack is SUCH a smiley happy baby. It doesn't take much to get him laughing!

Sadie's prayer

Last night was Sadie's turn to pray:

Heaven Faddur...
Tenk you...
For bessings...
For bike...
For baby Jack...
bess me...
Jesus name...

I peeked open my eyes in the middle of it and smiled at Jared, who too, had opened his eyes to share a grin. It melted me that she was thankful for her baby brother.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Another treasure!

Look what else I found in my treasure box! Troy and Lexi were the first of my friends to be married. I remember sitting in the relief society room in the Baton Rouge Stake Center, bawling my eyes out. The only other person crying as much or more was Troy's mama. I leaned over to whatever poor soul sitting next to my snotty mess of a self and cried "they're married for eternity!" The idea of being married for eternity was overwhelming (in a good way). I wanted to be like them. I wanted to have that kind of security. Eventually, I would. Funny thing, I didn't cry as much at my own wedding as I did at their ceremony!
Now, almost 6 years later, I still want to be like them. Troy and Lexi are the ideal couple. They've kept the ooglie-googlie-lovey-dovey in their relationship, have a sense of humor regarding life, and are truly one another's best friend. I see how they do thoughtful little things for one another and keep the fun in their marriage and I'm inspired.

Thursday, November 20, 2008


My brother Kevin had put a few boxes of my things aside. They'd been carried from one house to another to another and to another. Mama suggested that I go through them while I'm here. I found old childrens books that i'm sure Sadie will love, pictures, dolls (a few of which Sadie swiped as I was rummaging through), and a couple of old jewelry boxes that belonged to my mother that she had passed down to me when I was a young girl. Do you remember when trolls were "in"? Think back 15 years ago and you might remember. See the picture above? Look closely and you'll see a hook sprouting out of the troll's head. Yes, you guessed it. This is an earring. And yes, I wore them without any sort of reservation or embarrassment at one point in my life. Next to it, you'll see a ring with a tiny doll inside. This was actually one of my mom's costume jewelry from when she was a girl. I found them both inside one of the jewelry boxes. I remember loving the ring because at first glance, it seemed like an ordinary ring. But upon further inspection, you'd discover the doll. I wore it and felt like I had a secret no one else knew.
Tucked at the very bottom of the jewelry box I found a folded envelope. Inside, I discovered my birth announcement. I had never seen it and it was neat to see. My mom said they took me out of the incubator just long enough to take the picture.

It was fun to rummage through old memories. Everything I pulled out of the boxes had a story attached and if I thought hard enough, I could transport myself back to those moments.

At the start of our trip, I asked Jared to share with me a favorite memory of his best friend.
"Why?" He asked.
"Because we've got 9 hours in the car and I figured I'd talk to you."
"I don't think I want to."
"Why?" I asked.
"Because I'll remember the memories when I need to."
"But what are good memories for if you don't remember them? And if you don't revisit them often, you'll forget. Every moment we live has potential to be a memory and if we don't make it a point to remember the memories we have, new memories will crowd the old ones out."

That's why I like to tell stories about the past. Its why I can't quite let go. Its why I hang on to birthday cards and notes friends passed me in middle school. I love visiting the past. Its how I see how far I've come.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


A choir of bells are ringing out in heaven: Jared and I went on a date.

My parents watched Sadie and Jack while we went to see the new James Bond. It was the only thing that wasn't rated R and remotely interesting. I wasn't thrilled about it, and challenged the movie to win me over, which it did in the first 3 seconds. Its one of those movies with so much action that it doesn't matter if you can't completely follow the plot because you're so mesmerized by the hard-hitting action sequences.

Afterward, we went to Starbucks for apple cider and warm milk before picking up the babies. Sadie had a good time hanging with Papa J and Jammie. My poor dad works the night shift and usually sleeps till he goes, but with Sadie crawling on his head and chattering away, he didn't get his nap. He didn't seem to mind at all, but that's just Daddy. He'd do anything for the babies.

It was nice to feel like a person and not a job for 3 hours. Not that I don't like my job, (in fact I missed my babies and was delighted to see them smile at me when I returned) its just that its 24/7 and hard to remember that i'm more than milk, diapers, and "Elmo's World," when you don't get a break.

Friday, November 14, 2008

we made it

I made the 12 hour drive across the gulf south with two babies who hate riding in the car without needing a straight jacket in the end. Yay for me!

The key to survival was breaking the trip into digestible bits.

I picked Jared up from work on Wednesday and we drove to his parents' house in Houston for the night so on Thursday, we only had 9 hours left. Houston to Baton Rouge was so familiarly easy since we've made that drive a thousand times and since its broken down (houston to beaumont, beaumont to lake charles, lake charles to lafayette, lafayette to baton rouge). We were able to stop for a little while in Baton Rouge and visit our very dear friends Jamie and Holly and their beautiful babies. I wanted to see ALL of my dear friends, but we had such a limited amount of time. The idea of picking a neutral meeting place and having everyone conviene there crossed my mind, but then I realized everyone was working or in school. We're going to try to catch more friends on the way back since it'll be the weekend.

I can't tell you how fantastic it was to see Holly and Jamie. It felt like the last 7 months closed in and we were right back to not having ever moved away. The babies had grown and changed so much and I was smitten with all of their cuteness. I was so sad to have to leave them...especially without being able to say when i'd see them again.

The drive from Baton Rouge to Florida was even easier. I've made that drive since I was born (well, New Orleans to Florida anyway) and its such a quick drive.

It was so great to see my family. I'm not used to not visiting and I crave them when I don't get to see them once every other month. I'm looking forward to soaking in the moments for the next week!

Monday, November 10, 2008

I never liked cutting hair. I never know which ones to cut.

"Oh no! Oh my gosh....oh, I. AM. SOOOO. SORRY."

Not what you want to hear when someone is cutting your hair.
Those words came out of my mouth and floated the short distance to my poor husband's ears.

"What?! What did you do? What did you do?!" He asked, grasping the sides of his head.

"I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I. AM. SOOOOO. SORRY."

"Oh my gosh! How...wha? What number did you use?" (if you don't know, the lower the clipper number, the shorter the hair.)

"I really thought it was a 4." I cried.

I showed him the "1"

There was a huge gash of hair missing from the side of his head. You could see scalp. My eyes welled up with tears.

"Okay. Lets just think about this." he said in some sort of denial that lead him to believe there was actually something to think about. Like we could consider regrowing his hair or picking up a handful from the floor and taping it back on.

Jack started to cry so I left Jared alone to "think." He sat in the bathroom for a while and I went in to check on him.

"Are you okay? I mean, Jack's getting fussy so we need to finish up."

"There's no need to rush. I just need to think. I mean, do I shave it all off or just wait it out and let my hair grow back?"

"Put a big bandage over it and tell people you have a head injury. Can you wear a hat to work?" I asked.

I left him to 'think' some more and after about 45 minutes we attempted to "fix" things by making the fade shorter. Despite our best efforts, his head looked like a mushroom.
So we had no choice but to shave it.

See, you have to understand the fear in this. Jared has been worried that if we were to shave his head, it might not grow back. I'd like to reassure him that it will, but what do I know? I'm no hair-ologist.

Can you see the part that I originally shaved above his ear? Its not so bad with the rest of it buzzed. Its different, but I still think he looks adorable.

"You have a nice shaped head, Jared."

"Thank goodness." We said together.

"Are you mad at me?"

"I'm not mad at you, sweetie. I just need some time to adjust."

Jared smiled and exhaled. He kissed me lovingly and I felt grateful to be married to such a kind and patient man.

Saturday, November 1, 2008


Halloween night. Our first, real trick-or-treating experience. Last year, we went out with Holly and Jamie, but the girls didn't really know what was going on. This year, Sadie could actually say "trick or treat!"
Here we are with our buds Angela and Brayden. Sadie was a Ladybug (2nd year in a row. hey, it still fit and I felt horribly ill most of last week.) and Brayden was a bumble bee so we had little insects buzzing around us for the night. Jack was a "Jack-o-lantern." He was calm and mellow for his first Halloween. I was impressed! We went over to a neighborhood where several of our friends live and did a little trick-or-treating. Sadie loves candy, but was perplexed with the whole "begging" part. She was really cautious and looked sort of lost. Brayden wanted to eat everything he got RIGHT after he got it. None of this putting it in the bag and saving it for later stuff. And if there were any toys left around the yard or in an open garage, he'd go for it and start playing. It was so funny! Jack slept for a good ways of it. He was a really cute pumpkin!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Happy Birthday Jamie and Holly

These two girls could always brighten my day.

One semester at LSU we had a break that overlapped and I'd always find them upstairs in the Union. I seemed to always be stressed (in that dramatic way of mine) and venting about something. Jamie and Holly would lend me their sympathetic ears and find some way to relate to whatever craziness I was going through. They had a way of grounding me and helping me feel safe that made me gravitate towards them.

Through the 8 years we've known each other, we've gone from college, to young and married and newly employed, to mommies trying to figure it all out together. And voyaging that transition together; sharing the struggles and the joy- that's what makes them two of my closest friends on the planet.

I hope today is as beautiful for them as they are to me.

Love you girls. Happy Birthday.

Friday, October 24, 2008

New Car

My new 2003 Ford Escape. This is not actually her, but a picture of what she looks like. I can fit both kids in it comfortably and if I lose a few pounds, probably myself between the two of them in the back seat. Its a pretty red, drives nice, has had only one previous owner (who only drove it 8,300 miles a YEAR!), a 6 CD changer, power everything, and is in great overall condition. Jared, with all his car saleseman insider knowledge, was able to knock $3,000 off of the asking price. He pretty much mowed them down and it was darn sexy.

Good bye knees-to-my-chest-sitting-so-close-to-the-dash-the-air-bag-will-kill-me-if-it-goes-off-since-Jack's-car-seat-is-taking-up-all-of-the-space-in-the-civic and hello leg room, four doors, and cargo space. Yes!

To my Civic: Don't feel bad. Its not you, its me. My needs have grown. You did nothing wrong. You're just small by design and that's part of why I love you. You're gas mileage has saved us tons and we've been so many places together; 114,000 miles worth, to be exact. You've been great to me and i'll continue to drive you when i'm without the kiddos.
The overwhelmedness continues in the Rawson household. We need a break away from $1000.00 worth of car repairs, lost car titles, screaming constipated babies, cramped living spaces, feelings of inadequacy, and sleepless nights.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Have you ever felt this way?
Overwhelming love and gratitude and happiness and pride and glee... and exhaustion and guilt and fear and frustration and even overwhelming overwhelmedness (Yes, I said it. Overwhelming overwhelmedness. Proper pronounciation: over-well-med-ness.) so much so that you want to thrust yourself out of a moving vehicle going about 70 on I-10 to escape the choir of screams, chokes, and gags coming from your two beautiful children sitting in the back seat? Okay, so maybe when I'm feeling love, gratitude, happiness, pride and glee the whole jumping out of a car thing doesn't apply, but oh how quickly a happy little moment filled day can go from one side of the line to the other.

Like when you catch your two year old with "Daddy's Deoderant" and she's smiling so you pick her up and find that she's put it under her armpits because that's what Daddy does so you bust out laughing and feel all warm and fuzzy inside. Then you turn around and this same child is screaming and throwing a Daninino yogurt and snot is shooting out of her nose because she's crying so hard. Now, the baby is screaming and when you go to comfort him, the two year old screams harder because she's not getting mommy's attention. So you pile these two children on top of you in an attempt to regain peace and sanity but they are both fighting against you so hard you give up.

Lately, I feel overwhelming overwhelmedness. I want to be two people that can give my two children the same amount of love and attention that my one child received before baby #2 came along. I want to have the laundry done, the floors vacuumed, the dishes washed, the errands run. I want to be a supportive wife, a patient mother, a servant of my Heavenly Father, a long-distance friendship keeper, an e-mail returner, a book reader, a playdate keeper, a phone call answerer, a house cleaner. A loving sister, daughter, mother, grandaughter, niece, wife, aunt.

I can't do it. But I WANT to. And wanting too so badly is what is causing the overwhelmedness. Its what's provoking me to buy earplugs to use while driving. Its what's leaving me with enough guilt that I want to cry soft and hard in an attempt to purge it all from the bottom of my stomach. You know, that place that swirls and then tightens with the back of your throat right before a good cry?

Saturday, October 18, 2008

So Dixie...

So, Dixie. I think waaaaay too much. Fourth folder from the top of the page that pops up when I click 'pictures' on my computer button dealie thingie? or Fourth folder chronologically from when folders started existing on this computer? I chose fourth folder chronologically from when folders started existing on this computer and then went to the fourth picture in that folder.

This is a picture from October 2005. Jared's brother Daniel and his wife, Catherine came to visit us in Baton Rouge. We went hiking in Tunica Hills and took this picture. We were newlyweds...Jared and I married in July and Daniel and Catherine in August.

For those of you who are confused, the tag is to post the fourth picture from the fourth folder in your pictures file. Angela, Jenn, Holly, Jamie, and Lexi... I dare you to try it!

I KNEW I had a can of tomato paste!!! I found it underneath my bed while looking for a shoe.

Go crazy?

Me: Sadie, if you don't stop I am going to go CRAZY!

Sadie: Go crazy? Sadie come? Sadie go crazy. Go with Mama?

Yesterday morning was a little rough. Jared and I were trying to get the kids ready so we could run errands and Sadie was particularly whiny. It was our fault, really, since we let her stay up past 10pm the night before. We've been telling her for a month that we'd get her a bike for her birthday. Everyday she'd ask for it and the reply was "yes, Sadie. but you have to wait for your birthday." Well, her birthday came and went and we didn't produce. So Thursday I planned on following through on my promise.

7:42pm Sadie and I are on our way to pick up her bike from Wal-mart.
8:34pm we emerge with bike, soft drinks, rice, apples, bottled water, green chilies...why am I incapable of coming out of Wal-mart with only what I intended to buy??
9:10pm Jared begins to assemble bike.
9:20pm I begin to here murmurings: "Aght! STUPID! What the? Why the? Grrrrr...."
10:00pm Sadie is crying because she keeps trying to sit on the parts of the bike Jared has assembled, but Jared is still trying to assemble the bike and needs Sadie to move. Her feelings are hurt and its WAAAAAY past her bed time.
10:30pm Bike is complete... Well, almost. The wheels are on backwards. Sadie sits on the bike for 2 1/2 minutes and then is peeled off of it to go to bed with promises that the bike will be there in the morning.
12:30am Jared comes to bed after figuring out how to finish the bike.

So, Friday morning was rough for the tired Rawsons. I told Sadie I was going crazy and she wanted to come too.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Pumpkin Patch

Saturday, we took the babies to a pumpkin patch in Houston. Catherine and Daniel brought Peyton and our good friend Kathy brought her little girl Ana Julia.
This place is an exotic farm year round (Sounds a little dirty, I know) and they let a few of their animals run around the patch for the kids to pet. Sadie was a little scared of the Joey, but after much coaxing, I got her to come near him. They also had a cute pot bellied pig, two South African Raccoons, and a baby dear.
Here's a good picture of our fellow Awesome Rawsons.

Catherine, who is amazingly creative and talented, transformed these pictures into cute works of art!

This girl didn't want to pet the cute 10inch baby deer or the Charlotte's Web-esque pot bellied pig or the adorable Joey kangaroo, but she was DEMANDING to pet the dirty ole' Llamas with the funky teeth. Llamas don't really like humans so I had to stealth-ninja style it to get her close to one. We finally found a crippled gimpy llama that couldn't escape us.
Jack was loving the pumpkin patch.
The artistic stylings of Catherine Rawson...

Friday, October 10, 2008

The Things We Love About Our Sadie Bug

Sadie loves to look for airplanes when we're driving in the car. The plane will look like a mosquito, its so far away, but Sadie will point it out. Do we have a future air traffic controller in our midst?

She has an awesome memory. I can show her a picture of someone once and she'll remember their name and face days later. She learned all of her ABC's by the time she was 18 months old.

She loves to read. Her favorite right now is "The Cat in the Hat." She also likes "The Very Hungry Catipillar" by Eric Carle and "The House that Jack Built" by Tabot.

This girl is obsessed with shoes and no matter how ugly the shoe, she makes them look cute.

Whenever we get in the car Sadie wants me to put her "sh-ong on" which means I get to listen to Colbie Callait's song "bubbly" for however long it takes us to get to where we're going. I'm glad its a good song and not something that makes me want to jump out of the car. Lately, she even sings along to the part where Colbie says "Wherever, wherever, wherever, you go..."

Sadie likes to help take care of Jack, but she'll let you know when she's "all finished."

If we are somewhere were there are toys, she'll find the bike and ain't no body gettin' on it once she's got a hold of it.

Sadie is a happy kid who loves to be around people. She has an infectious laugh. She also has a sense of pride whenever she does something good. She'll smile and say "GOOD JOB!"

She asks to pray before bed and is always willing to offer up the prayer. Then we follow the bedtime routine by taking her to her room, giving her "lovie" to sleep with, have her turn off the light, then hold her next to her bed for a little bit after which she raises her head, gives us a kiss and says "night night."

Sadie will point out everything for which she knows the word. Right now the favorite is "candle"...appropriate for birthday time coinicidentally.

She yells "TOUCHDOWN!" and throws both hands in the air while saying it. She will also yell out "Geaux Tigers!" when LSU is playing. Also, whenever golf is on TV or we pass a golf course she says "golf" to let us know...must be daddy's little girl!

Any time she wants to be held she will look up at us and say "hold you?'', and if we can't at the moment, she is relentless about asking over and over until we can or give in.

She likes to be thrown high into the air by Daddy, much to Mama's lament, and then says "high...!" when Daddy's gone past her height limit.

Sadie likes taking Daddy to work and picking him up once nap time is over. She realizes where she is once coming off the off ramp exit that takes us into his workplace by saying "Daddy work?"

Some of her favorite pasttimes include going to story time at the public library, going to Chuck-E-Cheese and Wal-Mart to ride the horsie for $.50, playing at the park, go see friends, watch Mickey Mouse and Super Why, and being spoiled by both grandparents.

Sadie LOVES music. When she was really young, she would "conduct" music in church during the hymns. Now, she sings and loves to play on the piano. She also loves the guitar.

Sadie's birthday cake should have been made out of "Daninino" yogurt. She eats a little cup of it and asks for another right away. For every meal, she asks for a "Daninino". Other favorites are Macaroni and Cheese, chocolate milk, and gold fish.

We love our little Sadie Bug and can't believe she's already two! No matter how old she gets, she'll always be our baby girl.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Jack needed a swing....BAD. So Catherine and I went to a resale baby shop here in Houston. We checked out all of the swings and bouncy seats and found this one for a fraction of its original cost. It works great (see picture below).

I finally caught a smile!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Jack is a happy little guy. He was smiling and cooing, but I wasn't fast enough to get a smile on camera. Here, he's coming down off of a smile. Can you tell?

We caught Sadie with her head tilted back, peering out from under her hair. Her hair had gotten so long, she couldn't see so I put a pony tail up top to help her out. This lasted about 20 minutes and then she came up to me crying for it to come out. So....

We decided to give her a hair cut. This one went way better than the last. She still looked uncomfortably concerned over the whole process, but wasn't in tears by the end.

Here she is with her new bob.
Jack is enjoying his baths now that we are putting him in a little tub. I guess sponge baths aren't what they're cracked up to be.
Sadie hated these type tubs when she was small enough to fit in them, but now that Jack's in them, they're sooooo interesting!

Following Lexi

After reading Lexi's very entertaining tutorial on making pumpkin gingerbread, I decided to give it a try. I enlisted Sadie's help.

Sadie has helped me mix all of the "dry" ingredients. As you can see, she used her hands to achieve this task.
Here we are getting ready to spray our bread pans with Pam.
Sadie thought Crisco tasted wonderful straight up. Yuck.
The finished product. The loaf on the right is completely gone already. I started on the left loaf for breakfast this morning. We didn't share a loaf like Lexi. She's a better person that I am.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Budding artist

"Ahhh! What's that?"

I felt something cool stripe my foot. I looked down from doing the dishes to see Sadie looking up at me with a hot pink marker. She smiled her proud smile and went back to work. I surveyed the damage: Her feet were covered in pink, there was a bold pink stripe down the front of her brand new pants, her hands were stained pink, the floor next to her had deliberate pink scribbles, and Momma (of course) has been pinked as well. I realized she was trying to do my feet the way she did her own. It was cute. And fortunately washable.

She did manage to get some on a piece of paper, which she proudly showed me.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

My sweet little man has been cooing a lot more lately. He's even cracked a few smiles (though not shown in pictures above). I love this little guy.

I still have to wrap my mind around the idea that I'm married with two children. Wasn't I the child just a minute ago? Sometimes I forget that i'm a grown up and do things like take my shoes off and sit cross legged at a restaurant. Or say something like "dude, that would totally suck" in the middle of a Sunday school lesson. I feel like I'm caught in some thinly veiled world where I'm too old to know the lingo/fashion of the highschoolers, but I feel too young to be called "m'am" or "lady" or "sister rawson" or to drive a mini-van (gosh, I wish I had a mini-van! the Honda Odessy to be exact...silver...with a 6 disc CD player and automatic sliding doors).