Friday, November 19, 2010


Our Katrina was baptized last weekend. Because her birthday is on Veteran's Day, some relatives were able to come and share in the moments with us. We were so excited to have them come, although it made for a very busy and very full house: 18 people for 3 days.

Kristie holding Miles and Hope; Miles is holding her hand. He would be holding Faith's hand too, but I think she was asleep. Faith and Hope were born 4 days before Miles.

Katrina right before her baptism. We had some hair troubles that day. But overall, she looked lovely and it was a beautiful, autumn day.

Katrina invited her school teacher, Mrs. Webb. We were thrilled that she and her son came.

It was an especially exciting day because the church was locked and nobody had a key to get in. The bishop sent Mark off to get a key, but nobody thought to call him (I didn't have my phone) until someone else let us in and we were all sitting down. The other family was ready to go, but we were waiting for Mark's return and for Katrina's jumpsuit, which was in the van with him. Once he arrived and they changed, it started and turned out to be a lovely event. Thanks to those who waited so patiently, because it was a very important day for our girl.

Cousins together after the baptism. Matthew is being silly. Max fell asleep while Mark was driving all over creation looking for the keys, and needed to be held the entire time. I was sure grateful for extra hands!

Trying to take a family picture. Hence the invention of Photoshop?

Nana came from Alabama for the baptism. She had wanted to attend Felicity's, but Papa was dying and she really couldn't leave. We are really glad she could come this time. She definitely got her baby fix with 3 babies to hold!

Another Morris family photo attempt. Kristie and her girls are good with the cameras.

Most of the cousins together for a goodbye before the Kansans trekked back home. Miles (and I) were definitely ready for a nap at this point, Max is absent because he was napping. I think Hope and Matthew were too sad to be photographed.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Baby and Toddler Shenanigans

I realize it's been a long time since I've blogged. It seems that most of my journal entries have a similar introduction. Nevertheless, if I fail to keep current, I will try to blog again.

Mostly my excuse for not blogging is Miles. Book reading for me, exercising, and blogging have largely gone out the door with this child. He is a wonderful soul and we are so happy to have him in our family. Yet, he is what we call a High-Maintenance Baby. In fact, I sing a song to him along those lines when he's having an especially high-maintenance day. He is all smiles and contentment as long as you are holding him, although sometimes only you are standing up with your arm perched so. I don't mind most of the time, but it gets tiring and is particularly hard when cooking and cleaning. A soccer mom-friend observed that he looks so easy, but she knows that he is secretly a lot of work. But we love him and we're keeping him.

Have you ever used those old-fashioned sinks where there are 2 spigots, one of hot water and the other of cold? Yeah, those don't make a lot of sense to me... I'm glad they are for the most part antiquated and not coming back with other retro decor. We have an Austrian friend who says that it's like washing your hand in heaven and then in hell but never anything in between. Sometimes it seems like motherhood is like washing your hands in those sinks.

Take this morning, for instance. We were at the library when Max the Cutie announced to me that he needed to visit the bathroom, wherein he accomplished his goal of earning not one but TWO mini cookies for his fantastic production. I was very proud of him, and he continued his good behavior at the grocery store despite all temptations to do otherwise, since he saw some hot Cheetos like unto what Grandma bought for him when she was here in July and I adamantly refuse to buy. No ensuing tantrum, thankfully.

But then we got home, and after I'd unloaded the groceries, he announced to me, "I'm not in trouble!" and ran upstairs for me to survey the damaged ottoman and stuffed frog in the family room- both newly decorated with red marker. The Masked Marker Max strikes again.

Do not be deceived, he doesn't last long in the Bumbo.

Pondering future mischief

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Miles at home - the first 2 weeks

I blogged this a long time ago, but forgot to push "publish":

We have loved having a new addition to our home, although it's made life crazier than usual. Every day is a different adventure, as newborns grow and change so quickly. I only had to look at this picture of Miles in the hospital to see that he has already grown.
Miles posing for one of those baby pictures where babies pretend to be different beings other than humans(cabbages, butterflies, rutabagas, weasels):

We are always so thankful for a visit from Grandma. She is pleased as punch with our own 3 terrible twerps:

Peas porridge hot, pea porridge cold, pea porridge in the pot 9 days old. Here is Miles at 9 days, looking like a middle-aged man with a paunch. But at least he's happy about it.

Is it just me, or is there some resemblance here?

Nana and her TX grandchildren (Katrina's trying really hard to keep her eyes open)

Wednesday, July 14, 2010


July 10, 2010 6:37 pm- Welcome to mortality!

The All-Sibling Picture. Matthew was grumpy because he wanted to hold the baby.

Max was super excited to see Baby Brother. He tried feeding him grapes and sting cheese after he got to hold him.

Thursday, June 24, 2010


In June we took a quick trip to Houston. It was kind of a last-minute vacation, mostly to get out of town while we still could, but also to see my Uncle Charlie, Aunt Ann, and to go to the beach.

Our first outing was to the Children's Museum. It is a really fun museum- a little on the pricey side, but totally worth it.

The Bike Mechanics in their shop, making the big bucks. This was a really fun acty because they could earn a paycheck, deposit it in the bank, and withdraw funds to pay for needs/wants, and save the rest.

Water table fun outside- it was really hot and humid, but the water helped keep us cool. This was the boys' favorite part.

We went home to eat a great dinner and rest, thanks to the great hospitality of my family members. We all slept really well, which was good because the next day we went to the beach.
Building sand castles in the blistering sun. My poor swimsuit was stretched to the limit! (37 wks pregnant)

Max loved the water. He's trying to look polynesian here.

Not really sure what's going on here. We had lots of dramatic poses. Obviously we all had a great time.

Katrina's favorite thing was collecting shells- mostly tiny broken bits, but she collected whatever she could find. She has quite an affinity for small pieces of beauty.

We cleaned up -nothing feels so good as a shower when you're covered in sand, saltwater, sunscreen, and sweat. I lay down for a couple minutes and then we bid Aunt Ann and Uncle Charlie goodbye. It was a fun trip, even though we were only gone about 36 hours- which is pretty fast considering we drove about 11 hours of that.

Sadly, we came home to discover that our fridge/freezer in the garage had been left open, which meant a ton of thawed gross food. But it didn't ruin Father's Day. I think it was really Black and White Polka Dot Day- actually just a coincidence! But we had to take a picture.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Bizarro Kitchen

Mark and I recently did a bunch of work in our kitchen. We thought we were possibly going to move, and asked a Realtor friend for advice about improvements we'd already considered. She gave us some input about what things should be our priorities and we decided to go for the kitchen. I thought about the "Before" pictures the day we started taking things apart; I was in the middle of babysitting for a friend and making cookies but you know if you don't take the pictures when you think of it they won't ever happen.

We decided to paint the cabinets white. I've always liked white cabinets and before I ever bought a house I thought I'd like white cabinets because of their classic look. However, we had white counters and backsplash and it seemed like it might wash out the room too much. So we decided to wait until we replaced the counters, which probably needed to happen since our previous ones had some damage (like drilled holes). What I was seriously wrong about was how much work it was going to be. We've painted a number of things, but this was just a ton of work. After all, we have a lot of cupboards: 34 doors and 16 drawers. It took probably 4 or 5 times as long as I'd thought. Mark was incredibly supportive of the project in every possible way.

What we ended up doing was buying a sprayer and spraying the cabinet doors. We laid them out in the garage on top of a tarp and sprayed. ( I took a picture of that, but it's on another computer which is currently in PA) It was a whole lot faster, although there was some learning curve with that, too. Since we have little kids and additional responsibilities, most of the work was done late at night. After one particular spraying session and the Day of the Countertops/New Sink & faucet, we waited a day and 1/2 to return to the project. Unfortunately, the cupboard doors stuck to the tarp. It took a lot of scraping and sanding to recover from that. Ultimately, Mark finished the project while I tried to keep the kids out of his way. With the new backsplash, I think our kitchen looks a lot different. We still have lots of touching up and the hardware pulls/knobs to add, but with my ADD tendencies, it may be awhile before I get to that.

And we determined that the new look is very different: a bizarro version of the kitchen we had before. Well, not totally- same basic structure and appliances. But the coloring is different on the surfaces: we had brown cabinets, white backsplash and counters, more brown cabinets, and a brown floor. Now all that is reversed! I told Mark it was like seeing the white version of him, or the black version of me. We had all sorts of fun imagining what the white Mark would look like: would he have red hair? Blond? Pale, freckled skin? And what about me? Would I have an afro or super short hair?

Of course the irony here is the same irony that applies to my insistence to replace carpet with wood floors: the girl who hates to sweep is also the one whose college roommate told me to decorate my kitchen in a "Spatter" theme (since I do enjoy cooking and baking but not so much cleaning). So yeah, white cabinets? Turns out they need a lot of wipedowns. That's okay, I can force myself into cleanliness.

The Happy Feet Spa

Wow, it sure takes me awhile to get around to posting things. We took this trip in the middle of May, I uploaded the pictures in June, and am just now pushing the "publish" button. We took a trip to Kansas on a last-minute spontaneous adventure. Mark and I wanted to vote in the very controversial mayoral election that morning, so we had a bit later start than we wanted (who knew how long the lines would be at 7 am on a Saturday at City Hall?!?), but we were blessed to make fabulous time and only had one 9-minute stop for gas and visiting the facilities. I stamped my legs as much as possible to get the circulation going.

The reason for the trip was our niece/cousin's baptism day! We were so happy to join her on this special occasion and made it just in the nick of time, thanks to changing in the car. She just glowed with joy.

The baptism girl with some cousins and siblings

Three sisters (in-law) all pregnant at the same time... Alice (far right) has since delivered. Kristie is having twins, so hers will probably be next. A child took this picture, which is why it's a less-than flattering view.

Katrina and Maria sharing a drink at Chili's afterward- Martha's pick of restaurant.

For Mother's Day, the children organized "The Happy Feet Spa" for the mothers and/or willing fathers. They gave massages, rubbed lotion, fanned us... it was very nice.

The best part of these trips is all the time we got to spend together. Only 500 miles and we have wonderful family members with whom to talk and play. Too bad we can't drop a zero (or two) from that mileage...