ThankFULL Weeks 2 & 3

ThankFULL

Wow – the rest of November really got the best of me! I am finally finishing this post . . . the day after Thanksgiving.

But, really, every day should be a day of giving thanks. So, I’m not late. No. . . totally not. *wink*

Every day, I fill my tank FULL with the blessings that I have! And it makes my outlook so much more free and anticipatory.

These past two weeks, I have been thankful for:

9. My Health

While I’m still trying to lose weight that I gained throughout my two pregnancies, I am thankfully able to cook healthfully for my family, understand how to snack wisely, and keep my weight and overall health at a good point. There are so many in this world that are either underweight or overweight, under-nourished or gluttonous . . . and I am glad that neither I nor any of my family members are in those places. Because no matter how you get there, by choice or by chance, being unhealthy is a giant burden to overcome. So this week, I am so glad and full of thanks for my health and my ability to attain knowledge and skills to keep myself and my family healthy.

10. My Kids’ Development

My kids are so smart and funny and well adjusted, and I am so grateful for that. No, this does not mean that we don’t have disciplinary issues, or tantrums, or bedtime struggles. . . we have all of those in the Willa house. But when I interact with them, I can tell that they are healthy and growing and that their brains are full of curiosity and brightness. When Joe babbles on about helicopters and fire engines and steamrollers and concrete trucks. . . and Abbey – oh, Abbey. That bright little girl keeps me on my toes constantly. From practicing penmanship to making up stories and games, to having a strong curiosity regarding Jesus and his sacrifice for us. . . she keeps me on my toes and I am so grateful for her cheerful (well, sometimes not so cheerful) zest for life and learning!

11. My Embroidery Machine.

Seriously, I can get so crafty with this thing. It brings my creativity to the next level.

12. My friend Melly for teaching me how to knit.

Because knitting is so awesome and productive and satisfying. It mellows me, and I’m glad that Melly took the time to sit by me while I tried and tried and tried again when I was learning!!!!!

13. New Friends

Because wherever you go (or wherever life takes you) you need friends. Real ones.

14. Old Friends

Because friends that you leave behind should never be forgotten!

15. Neonatal Intensive Care Units

Without a NICU, our sweet Abbey might not be here today, and the staff that works in the NICUs of this world are extraordinary people. I hope to be one of them someday!

8. The Internet

For the way that it connects people, especially the way that it opens doors for knowledge, learning, and collaboration.

9. Coupons

Because seriously, a dollar (or even $0.40!) is something saved. Especially when added up.

10. Meal Planning

Because it limits my impulse buys at the grocery store or commissary, and it allows me to make a detailed list and know exactly how much of our grocery budget will be spent!

11. Compassion

Feeling for another and actually doing something about the needs and pains of others is so rewarding. Sometimes, just by looking at another’s struggle and really listening, we can unearth hidden strengths and weaknesses that benefit us and those around us. Compassion is totally cool.

12. Natural Parents Network

What’s not to like about a group of like-minded (and yet totally diverse!) group of parents actively participating in the spread of fact-based, compassionate information to grow healthy families and inspire a commitment (small or large!) to a brighter and more informed generation of families! LOVE.

13. Parent Coaches and Social Workers

Without whom Hubs and I probably would have been lost in the grief and helplessness of having our two-day old sweet firstborn go under for major surgery in 2008. . . and the parent coaches with whom I have crossed paths that have imparted such simple wisdoms to me that, shared with my Hubs, have brought us closer to success in this really really trying parenting gig ;P

14. Charity

I love introducing Abbey and Joe to the idea of doing something for someone out of love for our neighbors, not for any other reason. It was hard for Abbey when we first introduced the idea that there are people that have literally NOTHING in this world. But she cheered up a lot when we explained that everyone in the world has the opportunity to be charitable and help out those in need, no matter what the need might be, and without expecting anything in return but the joy of giving.
15. Hot baths

16. The amount of laundry chores I have. . .

Because that means that we are blessed with enough clothing to wear in all seasons, for all the days of the week. Some people cannot say that (see #14 for what we try to do as a family about that injustice).

17. The dishes in my sink

Because, again, this means that I had the food to prepare for a meal, the utensils and appliances to cook it healthfully, and the plates and cups to serve food and drink to my family for the entire day! How blessed we are to have that!

18. The magic of the Christmas season

Doesn’t need an explanation.

19. The anticipation of the birth of Christ!

Rejoice! Emmanuel shall come to you! It’s so thrilling to look forward to celebrating the birth of our amazing savior Jesus Christ!

20. My extended family

Because they care so much about us, and are always thinking of us and caring for us by sending love and prayers, taking phone calls whenever I call, and sending lovely little care packages that just warm my days and encourage me always!

21. Snail Mail

It’s always fun to get a REAL letter.

22. Student Grants and Federal Loans

They allow me to pursue my education, and apparently they boosted my credit as well.

23. My IRA fund, and our monthly contributions to it.

Someone (eghem, Mom?) taught me that you need to start one of these sooner rather than later, and it feels stellar that my retirement account grows every month. It’s one more thing not to worry about!

24. Military life

Because what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.

25. Integrity

Because real and honest people are the best.

26. La Leche League

An amazing organization that not only bolstered my family, but now gives me the opportunity to bolster the families of others – through leading La Leche League group meetings and spreading fact-based information and compassionate support for breastfeeding and expectant moms. Whoot!

27. Tradition

Amen.

28. Forgiveness

Amen.

29. Collaboration

Amen. Just thank you Lord for all of these blessings in my life! Some of them seem like challenges at first glance, but I always am drawn to see the good because I know that you have plans for me, and I am blessed to be on the path you have drawn out for me!

What are you thankful for this month?

How was your Thanksgiving Day?

ThankFULL – Week 1

ThankFULL
Original Photo Credit: Andrea 44 on Flickr

I’m seeing so many people jump onto the “thankfulness bandwagon” this month, leading up to Thanksgiving.

I think it’s fantastic, because, literally, one of the things that gets me UP in the morning is giving thanks. It puts a different perspective on each day for me, saying “thank you” and “I’m grateful for the blessings that I have.”

There are so many times in life that we can feel empty. But, I can choose to feel FULL because I am full of thanks. I get up each morning and I can refill my “gas-tank” with thoughts about the things that are good in my life, and that’s really cool.

So, this week, I have been very thankful for:

Faithfulness

My husband is truly a faithful person. Not in the religious sense, but in the truly loyal, constant, and steadfast way that he provides for our little family and perseveres through struggles, irritations, or let-downs. He may not be perfect, but he is perfect for me. If I were married to a less faithful man, I would definitely be unhappy, but Hubs keeps loving me and our little Silly Bears with so much gusto even if he’s a major crab-apple because he had a bad day at work or dealt with an annoying person, or if there’s some sort of struggle we’re going through. He’s loyal, he’s steadfast, and his love is constant. I’m very thankful for that.

Honesty

This morning, as I was lying in bed pretending to still be asleep and listening to the children chatter away in the living room, I overheard my 2 year old and 5 year old having the following conversation.

Joseph (in his 2 year old voice): Abbey, will you plug this in for me please? I made a mess.

Abbey: No, Joseph, mommy has to plug the vacuum in. Go ask her. But don’t worry. She won’t be mad. Just tell her truth and she won’t be mad. She’ll help you.

Joseph: Oh. Okay.

Abbey (in her little mommy voice): Joe, telling the truth is the right thing to do.  If you say you didn’t do it, she might get mad. But don’t lie – just tell her the truth, and she’ll help you. Go get mommy, Joe, and tell her what happened. 

Joe had spilled cereal all over the kitchen, and just as Abbey said, when he came to tell me, carrying the mini vacuum and asking me to plug it in, I wasn’t mad. I was actually near tears because I was so proud of them in that moment. I value honesty highly, and Abbey has definitely picked up on it, and is now teaching her brother. Trust is a sacred thing, and I’m really grateful for honesty and the sense of trust that can be garnered between people that love and respect one another.

Pomegranates

Do we need an explanation for this one? Pomegranates are the bomb, and I love them.

My Intelligence

IMG_4628

Okay, this one seems a little trite, right? Man, that Amy is such a pompous person, writing that she is thankful to be intelligent. LOL. But it’s true. I’m really really grateful that I have the academic ability and cognitive skills to learn new things, to seek out challenges, and further my education toward a distinct goal of helping others with lactation and public health. If I didn’t have the academic ability or the cognitive skills, I wouldn’t be able to enjoy learning as much as I do. So, I’m grateful for my intelligence. God created me with a mind to learn and expand, and be creative, and that’s really awesome. Thank You, Lord!

My Parents

I was on the phone today with representative after representative trying to get something accomplished – for at least an hour. And I have been doing this for about three months now over one certain issue that needs to get resolved. Oh, you know the feeling. The dreaded beaurocracy. But thankfully, I have the skills to deal with his kind of challenge. My mom and dad taught me. They also taught me that tact is important in other social situations, not just when dealing with clerks and supervisors, etc. They taught me that learning is awesome, goals are important, and passion is vital. And they taught me that I’m great for who I am. They taught me all sorts of things, from how to tie my shoes to how to deal with being on the phone for hours trying to get somebody to do something. And for all of their imparted knowledge, I’m really grateful.

Educational Organizations

This month, I have been extremely grateful for iLactation.com, at which I registered for (for less than $200) and am participating in an online lactation education conference.  The conference is certified to help me earn CE credits for my Lactation Specific Education component that I need to be eligible for the IBCLC Exam that I plan on taking in 2015, and it’s been really fun to learn more about the most recent information out there on birth, breastfeeding, and lactation-specific public health issues.  I’m also grateful for the ability to take college courses online through AMU.  I can’t imagine trying to finish my bachelor’s degree while traveling so much as a military spouse and going through semesters while Hubs is on deployments if I didn’t have the option to attend online. I’m really grateful for the educational opportunities that I have right now, and the organizations that make them possible!

Deep Breaths

Mothering a 2 and 5 year old is a hoot most days, but also incredibly stress-building.  Deep breaths are my lifeline.  They save me from most (not all) moments when I just want to SCREAM and even moments in which I feel like I might break down in tears.  They teach my children to stop and think and respond calmly to situations (when I remember to use them), and they don’t cost a thing!  Just taking a second to breathe deeply IN and OUT. . . super grateful for that.

Amazingly Kind People at Church

Those of you who read my posts a few months ago about going to mass with my children in New England know that I had a pretty hard time of it. So many people (including the priest) suggested I use the cry room, which I am against using because it enables children to behave in a way that is not appropriate at church.  When we go to mass, it’s a quiet time, to think and pray about what Jesus did for us and to worship joyfully about God’s love for us. It’s not playtime, and it’s not put the families in a plexiglass box time.  I need to teach my children to behave appropriately in church, and with practice, we are making good strides in that direction!  Here in Kodiak, we have been attending mass on base and everyone is so supportive and loving and accepting of families in the chapel where we hold mass.  My fellow mass-goers are happy to see us, and give support, not suggestions, advice, or criticisms when I have both kids with me with no back-up (eghem, daddy, who doesn’t go to church *sigh*). I’m just really thankful for the kindness that my brothers and sisters in Christ are pouring out toward myself and my family here. It’s really warm and encouraging.

So, that’s what I’ve been thankful for this week. What are you feeling in your life that’s filling you FULL of thanks?

The “Snowballing” Hollister Nurse-In

Two weeks ago, Brittany Warfield was discriminated against, vilified, and berated by a store manager at the Hollister clothing store in the Houston Galleria. Shaken and demoralized, Brittany posted about the incident on facebook and called the Best for Babes NIP Hotline to report what happened. Now, the night before the huge, international Nurse-In to encourage Hollister to issue a well-deserved (and still declined) apology to Brittany for their ignorance. . . I’m reflecting on my participation in what has to be one of the most inspirational events I have ever been a part of.

How I Got Involved:

I was simply in the right place at the right time to offer my help in organizing a nurse-in at the Galleria Hollister. Visiting my mom and dad with the Silly Bears in Houston for the holidays, I became engaged in discussion with Michelle Hickman (another mom victimized by a retail store, last year) who now works with Best for Babes to help women safely and securely fulfill their right to nurse their children in public and private. She inspired me to share Brittany’s story with my friends and former co-workers at WIC in Brazoria County TX (South of Houston) . . . and then two days later, I was attending a organizational meeting for the nurse-in and volunteering my time and talent to spreading the word about Brittany’s story and the subsequent planned nurse-in.

I’ve been so blessed to be a part of the organization of this nurse in. It is AMAZING to see every day mothers standing up for the rights of women and children and rallying around and alongside one another to empower women to embrace their mothering journeys and be secure in their decisions and their rights. I’ve been helping to rally interested mothers, call media outlets, and I’m so excited to participate in the nurse-in to encourage Hollister to issue an apology to Brittany and her family for the unlawful discrimination and harassment that she suffered.

After being contacted by a local television station for an interview tonight 1 . . . I realized that this nurse-in that started as a local, Houston area rally to support a breastfeeding mom . . . has grown into a huge outpouring of support and cry for justice in the quest to empower mothers, normalize nursing, and encourage education and respectful discourse regarding breastfeeding.

“We will definitely be there at the Galleria tomorrow to talk with you and cover the event” said my contact with the television station. “This story has snowballed big time. It’s international now. . . there is lots of interest.”

Nursing Joe on photo shoot 19 Months (Nov. 2012)

Me with my youngest nursling, Joseph (20 months)

Wow. I thought. This is pretty amazing.

Our Hopes for the Nurse-In Tomorrow:

We are very excited to be present at the Galleria tomorrow to EDUCATE to the normalcy of nursing and to ENCOURAGE Hollister and Preston to see the error of their ways and present an apology to Brittany and her family.

We would love to INSPIRE the company to institute training on Breastfeeding law and the normalcy of nursing, and we are hoping to EMPOWER women to own their mothering experience and stand up for the rights of a mother and her child.

It’s exciting to be able to be a part of INCITING cultural and social change regarding Breastfeeding and Breastfeeding law, and to look forward to a future when there will be a “Law with teeth” to enforce the Breastfeeding laws that entitle a woman to nurse in public.

Nothing in our goals for tomorrow has anything to do what so ever with desiring the manager to lose his job or be punished in any way. We sincerely hope that this rumor is just that- a rumor. And we encourage everyone to redirect their energy to getting pumped up for a calm, inspiring, and empowering demonstration tomorrow at the nurse-in!!!!!

bf moms

If you are interested in learning more about breastfeeding or nursing in public, please visit Natural Parents Network and Nursing Freedom

If you are interested in more information on why breastfeeding is so important to our nation’s public health, please visit Baby Friendly Hospital Initiative USA or La Leche League International

If you are looking to research breastfeeding laws in your state, please visit the National Conference on State Legislatures site

. . . and if you EVER, like Brittany and the hundreds and thousands of mothers like her, become the victim of breastfeeding discrimination or harassment for nursing, please call the Best for babes NIP Hotline at 1-855-NIP-FREE

All the best to you and yours!

And if you feel so inclined, PLEASE do leave a comment below. I blog to CONNECT with you!

- Amy

 

  1. and then usurped by a “breaking news story”. . . I hope no one was hurt, but I heard a helicopter a minute after I received that call. . .

No Apology from Hollister Store after Manager Openly Berated Nursing Mom

“Brittany Warfield was nursing her beautiful 7 month old daughter on a bench right outside Hollister in the Houston Galleria. The store manager came out and bullied the nursing mother by yelling at her to leave. She was humilated and embarrassed. No mother should EVER feel that way. Breastfeeding needs to be supported and encouraged to ensure a nursing mother’s success. It is also our right as women to nurse in public. So come on out, bring your baby and lets show our support for not only this mother but ALL mothers and their right to nurse their children when ever and where ever that may be. Let’s make sure not one more mother ever has to feel this way again.”

From the Nurse in @ Hollister Galleria Store and Nationwide Facebook Event Page

When Brittany was bullied for breastfeeding her infant, and yelled at to leave the Houston Galleria Hollister store by one of the store managers, it demonstrated a deep-seeded cultural belief that breastfeeding is inappropriate in public – a pervasive opinion that threatens our nation’s public health by criminalizing a perfectly normal and necessary activity – nursing a child.

Nursing is Normal

Nursing is like breathing, walking, or sipping a cup of coffee. It’s normal, natural, and there’s nothing inappropriate about it. But still, there are many reported cases every year of women (and their children) being discriminated against, bullied, and harassed by individuals and employees of businesses like Target and Applebees – for breastfeeding. These incidences keep happening, even though breastfeeding openly, in public, as needed by the child, is legally protected in 45 U.S. states

squareAnother example of how uneducated our culture is on breastfeeding is the volume of reported cases that do not receive public attention: Best for Babes recently started a Hotline for moms who are harassed for nursing in public, and within the first week, 8 cases were reported to the Hotline. It’s incredible how uneducated the public is on the legal and human rights of a mother and her baby to nurse, and how pervasive the thought that nursing is somehow an inappropriate or inherently “private” act . . . nursing is normal, and I wish that everyone could understand that.

Bullying is Not OK

Even if an individual doesn’t understand that nursing is normal and not inappropriate at all, I am struck by how eager our culture can be to bully and harass. What happened to Brittany and her children at the Galleria Hollister was mean spirited, unprofessional, and rude. Simply put, bullying and harassment is NOT ok – no matter how you feel about something.

Still No Apology

What separates Brittany’s case from the others in the recent past is that Hollister has declined to even make an attempt at an apology or movement to rectify their obviously lacking training for employees regarding state breastfeeding laws. Because of this reaction, breastfeeding advocates (including myself) are planning a Nurse-In at the Houston Galleria Hollister and Nationwide, to support Brittany, educate to the state laws that protect breastfeeding in public, and try to show the public that nursling is normal.The Nurse-In will occur on Sat January 5th at 3:00 PM local time.

Nurse InThe Nurse-In will be a peaceful gathering of mothers, nursing babies and children, and our supporters. We hope that it will receive local and national attention and that we can make positive change toward helping our culture respect the human and legal rights of a mother and her child!

If you are interested in participating in the Nation-Wide Nurse in, you can join in the discussion and find Hollister Nurse Ins near you HERE.

 

 

Why I Advocate for Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding hasn’t always been easy for me, but I’m so glad that I persevered and made breastfeeding work for me.

Because in being a breastfeeding mother and a student of lactation and advocacy, I have come to learn through fact and experiences that breastfeeding is amazing for families – not just nutritionally, but for nurture, learning, and connection.

Watch me lift my 16 month old youngest Silly Bear to my breast on demand, though, and you’d probably think, as others have commented,

“Wow, that seems so easy for you – he latches right on! I wish it were that easy when I tried!”

It Hasn’t Always Been Easy

I’ve been nursing for nearly four years now, and though it seems that nursing comes easy to me, believe me, I’ve seen my share of challenges. From getting Abbey back to the breast during a NICU stay when she was newly born, to judgement from a superior about breast exposure in my role as a WIC Breastfeeding Peer Counselor, to a demanding, difficult nursing dynamic from my older child when I was pregnant with our second Silly Bear, and everywhere in-between.

I’ve been told that I was starving my child by an ignorant M.D. I’ve been told that I was disgusting for nursing my babies past infancy. I’ve been told that I’ll spoil my babies by nursing them on demand. I’ve even been chastised for feeding my children at the breast in public (I have also been commended for this). But I know via fact and experience that this negativity is pure ignorance, and I wouldn’t ever change my decision to bless my children’s tummies, hearts, and little lives with my milk and my comfort. Despite the challenges I have faced, the decision to be dedicated to nursing my children is one that I am incredibly proud of.

Feeding Tummies, Hearts, and Minds

Holding my children at my breast feeds them with more than just ideal nutrition – it feeds their hearts to know love and comfort, and it feeds their minds to understand respect, compassion, and boundaries, too.

A breastfeeding relationship is more than a feeding implement. It’s a beautiful, challenging, and dynamic learning experience for mother and child, designed to nourish, teach, and nurture both mother and child.

  •  This is why I advocate for feeding children at the breast – because breastfeeding is important. It’s more than just awesome nutrition – it’s a formative experience for mother, child, and family – giving protection from illnesses, a soft place to run for comfort, and an education to love, patience, and nurture.

 

  • This is why I breastfeed my children, and why I am not ashamed or embarrassed to do so. This is why I tell my friends about the enormous benefits to nursing. This is why I offer my help to anyone I meet with a little nursling or a baby on the way.

 

Because I would like to see every mother, child, and family blessed by the wonder that is nutrition, nourishment, and nurture at the breast. Against any and all societal ignorance, in the face of misinformation and greed, and through struggles and adverse conditions: I want to see every mother, child, and family blessed by the beauty that is breastfeeding. 

Whatever I can do to make that dream closer to a reality, I will do for moms and their families. I’m blessed to have had experience working and learning as a Breastfeeding Peer Counselor in Texas, excited to be studying and working toward volunteer breastfeeding support here in Maine, and looking forward to continuing my studies to qualify for the IBCLC Exam and turn helping families embrace and succeed at breastfeeding into a career.

 

 

What is your reaction to the knowledge that breastfeeding is more than just nutrition?

 

Have you experienced the power of breastfeeding in your family?

Mamatography 2012- September Week 1

This week started out with a “last hurrah” of sorts. We broke out the inflatable water slide that we inherited from friends of ours for one last summertime extravaganza with friends over Labor Day Weekend. Here’s Joseph manning one of the squirt guns, and a friend of ours in the background striking a not-so-flattering pose as Hubs jokingly aimed a football at him. Ah, fun times!

Abbey and her friend Abbi warmed up in towels between playing on the water slide and at the park.

After our labor day fun, I got back to work, sewing a custom order of ReUsable Sandwich Bags for a friend.

I really enjoyed making them, and I she was impressed with my workmanship and my lovely woven labels that came in over the weekend! “So professional!” she beamed.

Well, I hardly would call myself a professional because I have a lot of work ahead of me if I’m actually going to succeed at having a Handmade Store, but if I’m going to do Silly Bear Handmade, I’m going to do it right. And labeling goods meant for children appropriately  is a must!

Then on Tuesday, I got a super awful allergy attack. Headaches, drainage, red, leaky eyes – the works!

Yay for a change of season! (said no allergy sufferer ever).

Everybody in the family then caught a cold. So, it’s been a lot of sniffling, sneezing, coughing, and nose-blowing around here.

But, I still had a baby shower BBQ to plan and prepare for for our friends this week. So, I got to work cutting out a zillion (ok, maybe just under a hundred) tiny paper onesies and embellishing them with nautical themed embroideries (I made them embroidering directly onto water soluble stabilizer and then glued them onto the paper). I was not feeling well (still feeling crappy as I write this!) but when you’re a busy mama, the show must go on!

I made a couple lines of pennants in orange blue and white (Coast Guard colors) and went with a loose interpretation of my friends’ Nautical baby theme for the party prep.

I think the Pirate Baby “Ne’er Say Baby” game was a HIT and a fun touch.

But my favorite creation by far was the “Wishes for Baby” cards that I made. They turned out super cute, and I think the idea is so sweet. Everyone at the party filled one out and I hope that my friends (who are expecting their second baby, a little boy) really enjoyed reading them.

And last but certainly not least this week are the nautical jello cups that I made for the party.

The kids LOVED them, and I have to say, they came out pretty cute! This was another Pinterest Success! (I also found the idea for the “Wishes For Baby” cards on Pinterest and pinned them to my boards).

Other happenings for this past week included Abbey’s second week of full time preschool at the CDC, watching President Obama’s Nomination Acceptance speech at the DNC with the Hubs, and chatting with my parents not once but twice over the phone (I think I may miss them a little, huh?)

Next week, I celebrate my 25th birthday, am attending the Ombudsman Appreciation Dinner on base, and will have to say goodbye to Hubs as he prepares to go Underway again soon.

But more about next week – next week. This week, let’s relish in the amazing-ness that is JELLO.

Yum.

That was our week. How was YOURS?

 

Mamatography Week 17

This post is part of Mamatography 2012, a project hosted by Diary of a First Child. The goal is to document the entire year of 2012 in photos. Paired with my participation in fellow Coast Guard Wife Courtney Kirkland‘s 52 Faces project and her Move to Manual series, I am definitely learning more about my camera, my photos, & my kids, and I’ll have plenty of great photos to document 2012. 
Please visit the links at the bottom of my post to see other Mamatography posts!
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 Mommy attended a training last week for my volunteer work as Command Ombudsman for my Hubs’ Coast Guard Cutter. It was a 9-3 training Monday through Wed, and Abbey got to experience a full day at the Child Development center while Joseph stayed at home with daddy. It was a different (and actually surprisingly wonderful) dynamic. Hubs’ mentioned to me that he liked the feeling of bonding more with Joe, and he could tell that I benefitted from doing something other than mothering/cleaning/household managing.

We’ve decided to make it a priority that daddy takes responsibility for the kids more often while I work on my new business, or do Ombudsman volunteer activities, or simply just have a mommy day. We just have to make sure that we WATCH Abbey carefully when we allow her to help with the motorcycle cleaning, daddy! (She cut herself on a tool this week, and came to us with a bleeding thumb, saying, “I touched the danger thing, and it hurt me!”)

Joe seems pretty chill with the idea of more daddy time. 
Here he is, relaxing after a trip to the park with daddy :)

 But back to the daily grind. . . kiddos at the park (and one with an awful scrape on his face!)

Now that Joe can walk well, he’s into everything!!!!

He’s also discovering the joy of playing with Raven
. . . and resisting naps a bit, which makes him a little drowsy when he wakes up from them. . . *YAWN*

 My Silly Bears in my Ombudsman stuff. . . *sigh* . . . it was all organized. . . the life of a multi-tasking mama! :) They made up for getting into my papers by being absolutely adorable the first time that Joseph used his new booster seat for dinner. He was so excited to be at the family table! (we repurposed his weaning table for a reading table in his room).

And that was our week. How was YOURS?

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Are you up for a challenge? One that will take something from you every day, but give a whole lot back too? How about joining me for the photography challenge in 2012 then? A photo a day of whatever your day involved. You can jump in any time through the year!

If you’d still like to join us, you can start at any time, just sign up here and our host will email you further information.
Without further ado, here is the current list of all participants for Mamatography 2012 so far!