Thursday, July 30, 2009

Count Down to Camping

A moment of clear skies. That's Bella on the blanket.

Last year when I was almost 7 months pregnant we went on a family camping trip. Peter and I hadn't been since 1995BC(before children). We wanted to share our love of the great outdoors with them. We found a nice campsite not too far away. For anyone familiar with our area we were in Plymouth, you know pilgrims, yes that Plymouth. OK, so we have the spot ,all we have to do is pack up everything we own and hit the road.

Smooth, is the word to describe how everything was going. We got there safe and sound, set up in record time. We are real campers, we use a tent! Actually we're poor campers... we would love a camper. but, we are not complainers! Our tent was up, the toys were out, the kids were happy.Something had to give. Momentarily,a very nice "neighbor" came over to our site. I'm thinking, Oh, how nice she's going to introduce herself to us, maybe even invite us over for marshmallows.
Well she was nice, but she came with a warning not an invitation. Basically, take cover, a WHOOPER of a storm is headed this way. Oh, yeah, and what she meant by take cover was get in your car and drive someplace safe, your tent is not going to be enough.(she had a trailer house).
WHAT!!!!!!!!!! OK, no one panic, it can't possibly be as bad as she says it's going to be. No problem, it was supper time anyway. We'll just go into town have something to eat and ride out the storm. We'll probably be able to roast some marshmallows later in the evening. Sounds like a plan , right? WRONG! Yes the storm was as bad as she said. As we were sitting in the restaurant the weather reports kept getting worse and worse. Warnings like, don't go out if you don't have to, severe weather alert, oh, yeah and my personal favorite, tornado sitings in the area. WE DON'T GET TORNADO'S!!!!!!!
This is what we get for trying to share our love of camping with the kids. We stayed in the restaurant for a long as possible, but eventually we had to head back to the campsite. Peter and I were holding our breath....was the tent still standing? Yes she was! YIPPEE!
We thought we had made it through the worst of the storm, but that night , all HE-- broke loose. Needless to say I didn't sleep one minute, the winds were so bad, I just keep waiting for one of the many very tall pine trees that we were surrounded by to come crashing down. The rains were intense and relentless. All I kept thinking was that we were going to be front page news in the morning paper...Family of Six Washed Away in Storm.
Well, morning came, I did a head count, all present and accounted for. Ready for day two...

So, after all that ,you would think we would sell our tent and camping stuff to any bidder. NO, not us. We plan another trip. Now there are 7 of us, and we're going a little further. New Hampshire this year.We leave on the third, please pray for us!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Feeding Time....

. They want me to eat that!

I don't know. I better check it out first.

That was a big mouthful!

Haha, I took the spoon!

All gone, that wasn't bad at all! getting better and better. When the kids get in on the act , Em does even better. Swallowing more than half of what we give her. She loves sitting in the highchair, that helps too.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Please Pray For...

... Cindy. She is a wife and mother of 10, beautiful kids. She has been diagnosed with cancer and it does not look very good. Linny over at has also asked for prayers and fasting. You can read about Cindy on Linny's blog. Linny also has a link to Cindy's blog. Please take a moment to read about her, it's only a click away. You will be so amazed by both these families. I can't believe I didn't post this request sooner, but it's never too late . God doesn't wear a watch. If you come by here ,please take a moment to meet Cindy and Linny and their families. Thanks!

P.S. thank you for all the beautiful and supportive comments yesterday about my Aunt. I did gather strength from them.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Heavens sweetest Flower

. Early 1940's

. Loving Emilia- Nov 2008

. With Bella and Andrew, about 2 years ago

Today heaven received a piece of my heart. My Aunt Emily, the Aunt who was my second mother, the Aunt who my little Em is named after passed away. How incredibly difficult it is to write this, but it is something I need to do. She never wanted recognition or attention, she was happy to be in the background. But today she must be recognized. Today I have to let as many people as possible know what an exceptional human being she was.

She was born with many health problems, polio being just one. She suffered daily, but no one would ever know, I never heard her complain. Everything she did, she did perfectly. The way she dressed, spoke,she was so organized and tidy, even her handwriting was beautiful. I remember trying to be just like her when I was a little girl. I wanted to dress like her , I would try to copy her handwriting , even clean my room and pretend I was her.

Emily didn't cook, cleaning was her specialty, but when my grandmother died, someone had to take over the cooking, especially Sunday dinner, well guess who stepped up to the plate and blew us all away. Just add one more thing to the list of things Auntie could do, but wanted no credit for. She would say,"I just followed Mama's recipe".


When I was about 10 or 11, Auntie took me to New York, it was the best time I ever had .We went with a friend of hers and her grand daughter.We stayed at St. Moritz Hotel( that's how I remember the name, I'm not 100% sure it's right, any true New Yorker feel free to correct me), we rode a horse and carriage through Central Park, saw a Broadway play, I Remember Mama, went to the crown of the Statue of Liberty and the top of the Empire State Building. One funny memory I have of the trip is , when we checked into our rooms, Noelle, her friends grand daughter came in our room to tell us that she had a view of central park( I think) any way a really good view. So as soon as she left my Aunt and I looked at each other and instantly went over to our window to see what spectacular view we had. I will never forget how we just looked at each other in disbelief as we opened the blinds to reveal the lovely brick wall in front of us. I am laughing and crying now as I think back to it.

She was the one who I would "run away" to when I was mad at my mother. She never got mad at me, she always listened as I new she would.We could communicate with just a look at times when words could not be used.

Her greatest pleasure in life were my children. I am so thankful she got to love and hold all of them.

I adored her, she was "movie star" beautiful. I could just stare at her all day. I thought she was the most beautiful person in the world. In spite of all her beauty and goodness, she was never truly happy, she had a difficult life, I could say a sad life. As I talked to my mother today,who was her sister we both acknowledged that this was finally the happiest day of Aunties life. Today she began an eternity without pain, without sadness, without worry. The unkind words that hurt her through out her life will never touch her again. Yes, sadly my sweet Aunt experienced much unkindness from people who "loved her".

She spent the last few years of her life in a nursing home. How my heart broke that day. My mom called this morning to tell me we should get up there. About one half hour later she called back to tell me Auntie was gone. At first I was upset. I wanted to say good bye, but after thinking about it, she did it in her own way. She slipped away quietly without any one knowing. She hated people looking at her . I had to smile at that.

If I had to pick something to describe her it would be a flower. Something small and inconspicuous, but with the fragrance of a field of roses.

I am sad beyond words, but the sadness is for myself , I will miss her terribly.But what joy I have knowing that, that beautiful flower I love so much is in the arms of Jesus and so happy, so very very happy.

Better than a day at the spa

Emilia with her "cousin" Biss.

Emilia's Godparents invited us down to their beach house. We went down on Thursday and brought torrential rains and gale force winds with us. Friday was much better but the storm produced some crazy waves, only suitable for surfers. We did find ways to amuse ourselves, like the above picture. Auntie is giving Em a much needed bubble, and turning her into a "Hershey Kiss" too funny.
We were able to go to the beach for a while. Emilia was having so much fun, unfortunately we didn't have enough time to let her get all wet and sandy, she really wanted to get down on her own. Next time for sure. Any way it was a super two days with beautiful, gracious friends,and a house bursting at the seams with children of all ages and plenty of laughter. It was so hard to leave, there is something about their beach house and the area that it's in, besides being so beautiful, that just sucks out all of your stress and anxiety. You can't help but to relax and enjoy the peaceful surroundings. The kids even forget to fight with each other.
Thanks guys again for opening your home to us and giving us all the royal treatment.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Many Faces of Emilia

I got such a sweet response from everyone on Emilia's picture I thought I would share the others we took of her. This whole new blog design was inspired by that lovely headband. My friend Jamie made it for her, and I just had to coordinate the background to match. I've matched an outfit around shoes, but never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I would be matching a blog around a headband. And look Lacey... the comb over is gone!

Most of the pics are blurry because she will not sit still.

I liked this one but I wanted her to sit up straight so I could "show off" her dress.

I love this one ( above). I wish it came out clear.

OK, this picture above is hysterical. My sweet cross eyed baby. Her smile could not get any bigger.Olivia and Sophia really wanted to use this one but it was not the look I was going for. Emilia's eyes pull inward, most of the time it's not too noticeable but it's actually exaggerated in this pic. The funniest thing, Sophia made this face and she and Em looked exactly alike. This picture will forever make me smile. Oh this baby, she is such a character already.

This one was good but she was looking the wrong way.

You can see the late night bags under her eyes here.
That's it. Emilia was a good sport as usual and we did this in about five minutes, but we're still laughing about it.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Emilia's 9 months Old !

Oct, 2008

July, 2009
Well, Miss Em has been on the "outside" for as long as she was on the "inside". I think I can speak for the whole family when I say it's been the best 9 months of our lives. I was just asking the girls the other day, how many more times do you think we've laughed and smiled because of Em? Countless!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Common Ground

It's early... a little too early. Thanks Em! Any way, I'm up, everyone else is still sleeping, Emilia went back to sleep too, so, what to do... watch the sun come up on this soon to be very busy Sunday, and sit quietly with my thoughts. My thoughts... most of the time they are running wild, trying to catch up to me , my days, the chaos I call life. Stress has hit our family, sort of sucker punched us, it's reared it's ugly head too many times over the last two years and has affected us all. My thoughts are usually , what in the world is for dinner, why is Andrew crying, AGAIN! Hurry up we're going to be late, stop that fighting , clean up this mess and occasionally... where is the baby? The baby.... sweetness, calmness, love. She is our refuge, our oasis. She slows us down, she commands our attention. She soothes our aching heads. We are her puppets, our legs will run to her, our mouths will sing to her, our arms will hold her and our hearts, well.... they are hers forever. Life is hectic, unruly and much like a circus, but Emilia has become our center, our focus. Our cornerstone. One small delicate creature has so much power over us. Without even trying she brings us together, unites us. We work in unison to please her, we are all on the same team. We forget our worries, our differences are discarded. Her timing into this world was perfect, there was no mistake. I truly thought Emilia's "condition" would be what pushed me and the rest of us, right over the edge, but our little miracle worker did just the opposite. She has gently lead us to a safer place, a beautiful place. She is our common ground, and around her we build our strength. She is the air we breathe.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Wordless Wednesday









I never posted pictures of the gymnasts, only the ballerinas. This makes me nervous. Whenever we go to a meet or show I can't hold the baby because I get so worried that they will fall and get hurt I realize I am squeezing Emilia. But they really love it.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

The Sweetheart Tree

. The sweetheart tree

. The sweetheart?

. A cool pic inside this massive tree

. Pure happiness

. A chew toy?

. A chew toy you can eat!

That's my silly knee in the picture... just look at the baby. I need to learn how to crop.

. Emilia loves to give kisses


Yesterday we went for a picnic at Colt State Park in Bristol, RI. It is one of our most favorite places to go. We always have the best time there. Yesterday it was packed, so we had to find another picnic area since our usual spot was taken. The nerve of some people. Any way, for the first time in at least 100 years since I've been coming to this park we saw this huge tree. At first there didn't seem like a way inside, but on the other side there was an entrance,two little archways are cut out, so you can go in. It felt like an entrance into a magical land. If only! As you walk in you are surrounded by the tree, and the first thing you notice are all the names of past and present sweethearts. As you can see Peter was prompted to add our initials too. So there we are. I guess they will be there long after we're gone. Our kids can come with their kids and tell them about the day, Grandpa carved his and Grandma's initials into the great tree. Thanks Peter for still thinking of me as your sweetheart, I love you.
P. S. Check out Sophie's blog for more cool pictures!