What Sin?

I just heard this song on the radio. I've heard it before, but today it meant a lot to me. It's very relevant to what I've been thinking and feeling lately... :)

What Sin?
by Morgan Cryar
from the album Love Over Gold

It happened so long ago
And I cried out for mercy back then
I plead the blood of Jesus
Begged him to forgive my sin
But I still can't forget it
It just won't go away
So I wept again, "Lord wash my sin,"
But this is all He'd say


What sin, what sin?
Well that's as far away as the east is from the west
What sin, what sin?
It was gone the very minute you confessed
Buried in the sea of forgetfulness

The heaviest thing you'll carry
Is a load of guilt and shame
You were never meant to bear them
So let them go in Jesus name
Our God is slow to anger
Quick to forgive our sin
So let Him put them under the blood
Don't bring them up again
Cause He'll just say


Lord, please deliver me from my accusing memory
Nothing makes me weak this way,
Than when I hear you say


These are Days to Remember

Lila has made the official transition to a Big Girl car seat now. Things were getting mighty tight in her old rear-facing seat and she is really too heavy to lug around in it anymore. So we used her birthday money to buy a new, forward-facing car seat on Tuesday. Yesterday evening, we pulled her old seat and base out of the car and I installed the new one (with many utterances of, "what the heck?!? i'm so confused!").

Lila really had no clue what was going on, but Doug and I were excited on her behalf. When we get in the car in a couple of hours to go to lunch, she'll get to ride facing the front! A whole new world of travel and entertainment awaits her!

What I did not expect was that I am also sad! Last night, as I was walking through the house, I spotted her old car seat gear stacked up by the garage door (we haven't figured out where to store it yet). I was suddenly overcome by emotion - my little girl is growing up! I know she's only one year old and this was just a move from one kind of car seat to another, but still... it's another step away from the tiny baby that we brought home from the hospital just a little more than a year ago. [sigh]


Just a fur coat away

(from WORLD Magazine - August 26, 2006 issue)

"It's just one more way for every dog to have his day. Longtime Miami wigmaker Ruth Regina has begun crafting canine wigs for dog owners with a pile of cash and a dream of a fashionable dog. The Miami-area wigmaker says she dreamed up the idea to charge between $18 and hundreds of dollars for human-style hair wigs and extensions. 'I just see now that the little dogs are being carried around in Chanel carriers. They're wearing tiaras and sunglasses and visors,' she told south Florida's Sun-Sentinel. 'Dogs are just little people in fur coats.'"

This blurb was accompanied by a photo of said wigmaker sitting with her ugly little pug in her lap. The pug was wearing a curly blond wig that looked COMPLETELY STUPID!!!

I love my cats. I talk to them all the time and sometimes they talk back. I like to buy toys for them to ignore and I think they are hilarious little people. I draw the line, however, at buying ridiculous-looking fashion accessories. Man! People will spend money on anything...

Note: I do realize that I posted a photo of Charlie wearing a lei (sp?) just a few days ago, but that doesn't count because (a) it was not purchased for him - it was a leftover from my baby shower, and (b) it was put on him as a form of harassment and entertainment for myself, not to make him look stylish.


Short, but Brave

I'm tired, so this is not going to be a very exciting post. :)

Lila had her one year check up with the pediatrician yesterday and all is well. She weighs 19 lbs 13 oz, which puts her in the 30th %ile. She's only gained one pound in the past three months! It wasn't that long ago that she was gaining one pound per month! She is also 28.5 inches long/tall, which puts her in the 25th %ile. She's grown 1.5 inches in the past three months.

She came out of the womb smaller than expected, grew like a weed for the first several months, and has now plateaued. I think that her current size is more representative of what she will be like from now on. I was a small child and I'm expecting her to be petite as well.

Anyway, she also got a couple of immunizations and had a TB test and a test for anemia. Both Doug and I and one nurse were holding her still while another nurse put the "stuff" under her skin for the TB test, but that all turned out to be unnecessary. She didn't even care that someone was sticking a needle in her arm. So far, by the way, there has been no reaction at the test site.

When they did the toe stick to get blood for the anemia test, she was annoyed, but still didn't cry. And I'm happy to say that her iron level was normal - yeah! (at her 9 month check up, she was borderline anemic.) Then we held her down while they gave her a shot in each leg. Those did make her cry, but I think it was anger as much as pain. She recovered quickly though and was back to causing trouble in no time. She did a very good job!


All this time, I've thought that Lila had my super-fair skin, but it looks like she might have a bit of her Daddy's coloring in her after all. When we all got back from the beach a couple of weeks ago, she and I both had more color than before we left. I would not go so far as to say that we had a tan (my skin does not tan, ever), but we had color.

On my body, that color has all gone away now. In fact, it was probably gone within two days. I was just noticing, however, that Lila is still looking quite colorful. I was looking at her skin next to mine and she puts me to shame. A beautiful pinkish tan on flawless chubby skin. I will still slather her with sunscreen and keep a hat and shades on her in the sun, but that's really wonderful news!

I grew up hating the fact that I was so pale. It doesn't matter how much time I spend in the sun, my skin just does not tan. I had gotten used to it in the past several years and don't think much about it anymore. I was made acutely aware of just how little color I have while we were in Florida though. I'm pretty sure that Doug, Lila, and I were the only people in Ft. Lauderdale without a tan. And Doug was only pale because he hadn't gotten a lot of sun this summer. He actually CAN tan.

Anyway, I need to go put my pretty girl down for a nap now. Before she unplugs my computer. :)


A funny thing happened on the way to the living room...

A little while ago, I heard Lila making some grunting noises in the living room. They sounded like noises of frustration, indicating help was needed before things got really dramatic. If she is having trouble doing something, she'll often say, "Help, please," with prompting. Occasionally, she even says it without prompting. It's VERY cute! "Ep, bo..."

Well, what I found when I got in there was that she had crawled into her car seat, which was in the living room floor, and gotten stranded there. She was laying in it, sort of at an angle, one her back with her arms and legs waving in the air like a turtle. The grunts came when she tried to sit up, but couldn't. I just started laughing at her. I felt bad, but it was just too funny! I did, however, resist the urge to leave her there and go get the camera. I was afraid that would end in crying.

This amusing scene was quickly followed by an injury for The Mom. I leaned down to pick something up and -- I'm not sure. I guess I lost my balance. Anyway, I landed with my weight on my left hand and my index finger was bent backward, much farther than it was ever intended to bend. I hurt myself at least 117 times per day (usually in ways that make doug laugh and shake his head), so this is not remotely surprising.

Every roommate I have ever had, including my loving husband and daughter, has quickly learned to ignore the frequent exclamations of pain or shock that I emit. It's not uncommon to hear a crashing noise and/or a scream come from the room that I am in, followed by a pause, and then, "Everything is under control!" Doug's repsonse is usually something like, "Yes, dear."

Anyway, this finger bending thing hurt badly enough that I didn't make a sound! I just put my head on the floor and didn't move or breathe for several seconds. Lila, who was sitting right next to me when this happened, pretended not to have noticed. I'm sure it was my own pride that she was protecting. Yes.

Well, my finger tingled from the tip down into the middle of my hand for a few minutes, but that's about it. I keep expecting it to swell up to twice its normal size and turn purple, but no such luck. I mean, I don't want to lose the use of my hand, but I think I should have something to show for this pain! I get little scratches that bleed and bruises on my legs and I have no idea where they came from. But I do something like walk face-first into a closed door (or get elbowed in the nose by my husband - this happened just the other night) and I never bruise or bleed or anything.

Alright, enough. I'm sure I've done enough damage to my reputation for one day. :o)~


Hurricane Lila

I've been sitting here in front of the computer for five minutes (lila's napping, obviously), trying to decide what to write. How is it that I suddenly have nothing to talk about? I guess I could tell you about my morning...

I spent most of the morning trying to get through my daily routine (and i did! i finished my morning routine before noon for the first time in... i don't even know how long!). Lila spent most of the morning crawling from room to room and leaving a path of destruction in her wake. For example:

I picked up the few toys that were scattered in the Study floor and put them back in the toy basket. I sat down to read an email and when I turned around, Lila had pulled ALL of the toys out of the basket. I then went in and straightened up Lila's room, which was really not very messy. I put away the clean laundry that had been sitting in a basket for days and put the basket back in the dirty clothes hamper where it belongs. After that, I went off to make my bed. When I came back, Lila had created more of a mess in her room than there was to begin with, had opened her bottom dresser drawer and pulled out half of her extensive collection of bibs, and had opened the laundry hamper and pulled out some dirty clothes.

Thankfully, I have a sense of humor.


i typed out a long post. the website ate it. i'm not re-typing it. sorry. :)


Getting Lyrical

Boy howdy! Lila just fell asleep, but that was preceded by 45 minutes of screaming. I was literally three minutes away from giving up and getting her out of bed when she suddenly got quiet. I actually went in and checked on her to make sure she hadn't cried herself into a coma or something! Crazy girl...

If you don't have a child, or it's been a long time since yours cried that way, let me tell you how it feels: Imagine that there are teeny tiny elves living inside your body and when the baby starts screaming, they attach themselves to every nerve in your body and start chewing on them and then this buzzing noise starts inside your brain so that you can't complete a sentence or even think straight. That's kinda what it's like.

The way that I lived through it this afternoon was by making up new words to "The Song That Doesn't End". Would you like me to share them with you? . . . Good.

This is the scream that doesn't end
Yes it goes on and on my friends
My daughter started screaming it
Not knowing what it was
Now she'll continue screaming it
Forever just because
This is the scream that doesn't end...


Milk, Take Two

The Milk Thing went better today. Doug and I got to have a nice, focused conversation last night about weaning (among other things). When Lila is present, my conversations are usually filled with little interruptions and the person I'm talking to only gets half my attention. After Lila is in bed, however, Doug and I get to sit together and actually look each other in the eye while we talk about things other than what to feed the baby for dinner and how many people to invite to her next birthday party.

Anyway, I entered today with different expectations about milk and weaning. This time, I put 4 oz. of milk (which we are now calling simply "M" to reduce confusion) into her cup, set the timer for 15 minutes, and handed it to her. She, of course, took a couple of drinks and then wandered away. I kept placing it in front of her and occaionally offering her a drink. I didn't force the issue though - if she pushed the cup away, then I backed off. She didn't get hostile and I didn't get childish.

When the timer went off at 15 minutes, I asked her if she wanted more ("Are you All Done?") and when she wasn't interested, I poured it out and put water back in her cup. Game over. After that, I nursed her. One trick I discovered: if I feed her bread during "M" time, she gets thirsty and drinks more! It felt a bit sneaky, but at this point I'll do whatever works to convince her that "M" is her friend!

She only drank one ounce of "M", but that's still more than yesterday. Maybe tomorrow she'll drink 1.5 ounces... :)


The Good and The Bad

Good: Lila had a burst in vocabulary this weekend. She's started saying, 'no', 'Thank You!' (DAH-goo), 'diaper' (bye-bur), 'cool' (don't remember exactly how she says this one - i just asked her if she would say it and she said, very clearly, 'no'), 'wow', 'uh oh!' (uh boh! this is the cutest), and a few other things that she says occasionally, but not consistently.

Bad: I just gave Lila some cow's milk for the first time and... I've had better experiences... at the dentist's office! Okay, so maybe it wasn't THAT bad, but it did leave us both very frustrated. I put some milk in her cup and gave it to her. She took several drinks, while looking at me like, "What is this strange substance?" She didn't dislike it, but didn't feel the need to continue drinking either.

So I put the rest into a bottle to see if she'd take it that way. This was a big mistake. Mostly, it just made her very mad! She wanted the white substance in the bottle to be Mommy's milk, not this other weird stuff that I kept calling milk. Between the cup and several minutes of her screaming and me trying to convince her to drink some from the bottle, she only consumed about 20 mL (maybe less).

At that point, she was throwing a total fit and I was extremely frustrated, so I put her down and went outside for a few minutes. Once we had both calmed down, I let her nurse for a bit. Did I really expect her to just cheerily give up nursing and take cow's milk as a replacement? No. At least, I don't think so... Maybe I secretly did. I don't know. Anyway, I am not looking forward to this process of weaning!


Whew! The party is over and I am one tired Mommy. It was lots of fun though!

Lila had fun being the center of attention. She especially liked watching the bigger kids and taking things away from them when they weren't looking!

She really didn't get very messy with the cake - she kinda didn't know what to do with it. For a while she just scraped the icing off the top and ate that and then I broke some pieces off for her to eat.

She got lots of presents that she spent the rest of the afternoon playing with. I particularly liked this cute little necklace!

After everyone went home, we all changed into our comfy clothes and had some beer. Or not...

A very silly bath time and then it was off to bed. She went down a half hour early because she was SO tired!


Birthday Parties

Lila's first First Birthday Party is tomorrow and I'm hovering somewhere between completely dreading it and being really excited. I've ordered the cake, bought a few gifts for Lila, gotten some of the party favors - for children and adults, picked out which of her new birthday dresses Lila will wear, and have firm answers from everyone invited about whether or not they're coming.

I still need to figure out what kind of food we'll be serving and buy the ingredients as well as the balloons, plates, candles, and any other decorations I decide are necessary. I need to go out and buy some more favors for the adults. I need to get a bit more cleaning done. And we still need to figure out what, if any, games and other distractions we'll organize for party time. Eek!

And you know how Lila is helping me with this right now? She's sitting behind me, crying and beating on my chair. Why? Because I won't let her push buttons on the computer or pull cables out of the back of it. Yes, yes, I know - such a mean Mommy... [sigh]

Side note: If you live in Austin and you were not invited to this party, please do not be offended. We're keeping it pretty small and a lack of invitation does not mean that we don't like you! :)


Where am I?

I have no idea what day of the week it is. I might be in this state until next week. We got back to town on Monday, which kinda made it feel like Sunday except that there was no church. (Of course, there was no church on Sunday either, which didn't help.) When Doug went back to work yesterday, it felt like Monday. Except that Lila and I went grocery shopping in the afternoon, which is usually what we do on Friday.

Today I had no idea what day of the week it was, but it didn't feel like Wednesday. I kept forgetting that our small group meeting, which happens every Wednesday, was tonight. Every time I did remember (once per hour or so), I would whimper and roll my eyes around at the post-vacation mess that still rules in our home.

On Friday, Doug has an off-site in the afternoon, which means that he'll be home early. Anytime he gets home early on Friday, it ends up feeling like Saturday because we get to spend time hanging out before dinner. Then I don't know what day it is for the rest of the weekend. I think I'm in trouble until Monday rolls around.


Ft. Lauderdale

As I mentioned, our trip to Ft. Lauderdale was great! Lila was much more content to sit in our laps and play with things than I had anticipated. Maybe it was because she had both of our complete attention. She was also working the crowd - peeking over and around seats to flirt with other passengers. They all loved her because she wasn't screaming. In fact, she spent a significant amount of our flight time asleep!

I was a bit doubtful about our hotel (even though I was the one who picked it out) because you just can't tell what you are going to get sometimes. Also, we'd heard from a couple of people that the place was "old, but nice". It turned out to be quite nice though. Recent paint, carpet, and furniture in the room and the view from our window was lovely. My only real complaint was scratchy sheets - not bad!

The one other time that we've stayed at a hotel with Lila, we put her in the bathroom to sleep (see the archive for march if you want details). We thought we might be able to do that again here, but the crib was too wide to fit through the doorway. Oh well, we just rearranged the room to make a little sleeping alcove for her and then we hid in the hallway or bathroom between her bedtime and ours.

We didn't make it to town in time to hit the beach the first day. Well, I went down to see it that night, while Doug was putting Lila to bed, but that doesn't count. We were there early on Day 2 though! We all got slathered up in sunscreen, put on our suits, and headed for the sunshine. What are the 6 S's of the beach? Sunscreen, Sunshine, Sweat, Salt, Sand, and Swimming! We experienced them all.

Lila was tired and unsure of the whole business that first trip out, but she warmed up to it quickly. Well, she grew to like everything except the sand. She never liked that and didn't want to be put down on it. She was happy, in the water or out, as long as she was not touching the ground (being held, in her floatie, in a chair). She didn't even like the way the sand felt through the beach towels!

I only set foot in the ocean once and that was fine with me. The water was comfortable and clear (it definitely passed my requirement for being able to see my feet). I just don't get that excited about the water. Doug and Lila went in several times and played in the swimming pool too, but I only stepped in the pool long enough to rinse off the sand and salt water after my one trip into the ocean.

Reading in the shade is more my style. And I got to do lots of reading. I usually only read for a few minutes at a time while Lila is nursing, but I made it halfway through a John Grisham novel on this trip! There was no housework to be done, no computer to be distracted by, and I couldn't get sucked in by the TV after Lila went to bed because she was sleeping in the same room! Once again, it was great!


Home again, Home again...

We're back from Ft. Lauderdale and here and, briefly, it was great!

Lila was great on the plane. The hotel was great. The beach was great. The food was great. The relaxation was great.



Getting ready to go to the pool (for the third time ever). Look at Lila's 'Olaf Belly' hanging out of her suit! :) Posted by Picasa

My two Cuties - I think Daddy needs a hat like that! Posted by Picasa

Mommy and Lila in the pool. She looks a little wary here because I was just trying to lay her back in the water. Posted by Picasa


busy times

Sorry for the silence of the past few days. Doug is off work this week and we've been staying busy since Friday evening. We've planned something fun for the end of this week too - we're taking a last minute trip to Ft. Lauderdale, FL! I've never been to Florida (as well as i recall). We'll fly out on Thursday and return on Monday. This will be the first time Lila's been any further from home than Dallas!



I went to the dentist yesterday for my regular cleaning. I always dread this even though it's usually completely painless. Well, except for the X-rays. I've got to think this is an uncomfortable experience even for someone with a normal-sized mouth, but mine happens to be small. So they put these sharp-edged plastic things in your mouth and tell you to bite down and hold still while they shoot you with radiation. Meanwhile, my eyes are watering because the plastic thing is stabbing me in the gums and my jaw is starting to ache from holding this oddly shaped contraption in my mouth for so long.

Well, yesterday they started out with the X-ray torture and then the hygienist started poking around at my teeth with the Metal Hook from Hell. The only thing I hate worse than the X-rays is that awful scraping noise that the metal utensils make on my teeth. [shudder] I'm about to gag just thinking about it. I don't know how many times I've had to answer the question, "Does that hurt or is it just the noise making you wince and squirm?" And don't even get me started on the joys of having your teeth cleaned while you're pregnant and your gag reflex is 100 times more sensitive than usual and they have you tilted back in that chair so that all the blood is rushing to your head and the baby is flipping with excitement over all the organs that it's never gotten to kick before...

Anyway, I was about to tell you the really exciting part of my visit, but my child just woke up screaming -- gotta go!


Yesterday afternoon, I heard Lila wake up from her second nap and start playing and talking to herself. After a few minutes, I went in to get her out of bed. As I opened the door and looked in, I said, "Hi!" She smiled at me and said, "Hi, Ma-ma."

Do you hear that liquidy sound? That is my heart melting. :)


Tweety eating bread out of my hand. Lila was rather jealous of this because she thought that SHE should be eating the bread! Posted by Picasa

Isn't he cute? Well, for a half-plucked looking adolescent bird, anyway. Posted by Picasa

Lila really was really not sure about having the bird on her head. How cute though! Posted by Picasa


You are not going to believe this...

Tonight's dinner involved grilling and I wanted to get the fire started before Doug came home. That was a problem since Lila was awake and I wasn't comfortable leaving her unattended in the house that long. So I took all the grilling goods out there and plopped Lila on a blanket with a couple of toys (out of the range of the heat and any possible jets of fire).

As I went about my fire starting activities, I noticed there was a bird chirping and flitting around near us. Very near us. Right after I noticed this, it buzzed my head! This was, obviously, very strange, but I was preoccupied by what I was doing. I turned around a minute later to check the location of the Crazy Bird and -- this is great -- it was on top of Lila's head!!!

It is an adolescent male Cardinal - still kind of scraggly looking because he's only just lost his fluff and started growing his red feathers. As I stood there, shocked, he flew down from her head onto the blanket and started hopping around. He then flew back up onto Lila's head and she decided she really didn't care for that. I tried putting my hand in front of him and he stepped onto it!

So we sat out there for quite a while, letting Tweety (i know it's not original, but it seemed appropriate) fly between my head and shoulder, and the surrounding furniture and bushes. Thankfully, Doug came home during this and went in for the camera and some bread. As you can see below, we got some great photos of him. We even put him back on Lila's head long enough to get some photos.

Now we have a new friend... or maybe stalker would be a better description. I went outside several times as I was cooking dinner and every time I went out he'd come flying over and land on me. Once, he landed on the handle of the spatula I was holding and started trying to pull the thin leather strap off the end of it. He does the same thing with Lila and Doug and it's driving the cats crazy!

OH! I forgot one detail: When Tweety landed on my shoulder the first time, he tried to bite the mole off the side of my neck! I have to admit, it does look like a big juicy bug. Still, I had to discourage him from doing that again because it didn't feel very good! Aside from that, he's been very friendly. I was worried at first that he was going to bite one of us.

And I'm quite sad that Lila doesn't like him. In fact, she's totally spooked by him. Doug went outside with her and the bird came again and landed on her head (he *really* likes Lila) and she started getting upset. So we moved him to Doug's shoulder where she could see and touch him if she wanted, but she just wanted to get away from him. Doug had to take her back inside though because Tweety really wanted to be on her head! Funny bird!