Friday, March 29, 2013

Benny marches on Washington

Future POTUS.  Right here.  Take a good look.

By the way, according to Daniel here are the Presidential projections:  Ben will not be a Republican, nor Democrat, but rather a third-party candidate that will revolutionize politics.  This will happen, of course, after he reigns supreme in the NCAA as the KU Jayhawks star shooting guard.  He would be a post, but apparently I am "feeding him too much and weighing him down so his bones can't grow." 

 (I was writing a different parenthetical statement, but Daniel is proof-reading my blog over my shoulder and suggested I leave it out.)

Anywho.  We spent about a week in D.C. seeing some friends (except I didn't get to see Megan) and my brother Andy's family.  So fun!  Ben is now full-on walking so he was able to play with cousin Henry a lot.  Henry is a sweet almost-2-year old who was not as enthused about playing with Ben once he found out it meant sharing toys, play tents, and his mom's attention.  Give them a few years and they'll be best mates.  The initial fun of the trip was just catching up with Greta, my sister-in-law, and getting to hang with Henry.  I wish we got to see my brother more, but duty called, and he had to spend some nights at the hospital work.

Daniel and I were in for a shock with the new challenges of flying with a lap-infant that is the size of a 2-year old, and not sedentary any more.  For both legs of the flight across country, Ben hopped back and forth from lap to lap and rarely settled.  He of course crashed for a nap during the layover.  I did get a chance to try out one of my new items for my Etsy airplane tray activity cover. Here is a sneak peak:

 We arrived late in D.C., but the next morning Henry got up and couldn't wait to see "Bin" and "Mamy."  Henry picked up "Newl" (2nd half of 'Daniel') later on in the trip.

We spent some great time in the sun out on the lawn in front of the Washington Monument on Saturday.
Daniel and I had a conversation earlier in the week about Ben's temperament.  I said that if we were in a crowded place and I set him down and turned to act like I was leaving he'd look around for me and start crying.  Daniel said he would just walk the other way and not look back.
Look at that, Dad!
I was wrong.
That kid took off across the lawn as fast as his little legs could take him.
He didn't really care where I was, but I'd like to think he was so carefree because he knew I was behind him.
Sike!  I took your glasses.

 I wanted to add a picture of me.  Even if it's not a great one, just to show that I, too, was on this vacation.  This is how most photos of me and Ben ended up.  He's trying to squirm out of my arms or is a blur across the lens.  He just doesn't stop moving, unless he's  asleep.
If you ever wanted to know what it looks like to throw a 25 lb pumpkin with a jacket in the air, it's a little like this.
If you ever wanted to know what sheer joy on a little boy's face looks like, it's a little like this.

Family pic
Somehow I don't have any pictures of Greta.  Not cool, Amy.  She made some amazing homemade pizza, peanut butter bars to die for, and yummy breakfast food.  I highly suggest staying at Casa Biggs if you're in D.C.

The great trip was topped off by some crazy cabin pressure changes in Ben's tummy upon landing in Seattle.  No seriously.  Exactly when we landed.  Wheels touch down and then Ben's stomach takes off.  We were that family people hoped they didn't sit next to.  Projectile vomit (too much detail?) all over my pants, Daniel, and a few other things in our row.  Poor little Benny had been trying to tell us he felt a little off most of the flight.  He didn't sleep well and was just acting funny. 
I was so happy to be married to Daniel at that moment.  We didn't react mad, or scared, or frozen,...we just reacted.  We cleaned up Ben and the row as well as we could.  A flight attendant gave me a filter with coffee in it to "wave around for the smell" if we needed it.  Not helpful, but thanks for the thought.  After exiting the plane and confirming that yes, we do think they'll need the cleanup crew to take a look at things, we were homebound. A short 4 hours later we got to our Whidbey Island home after a couple more tummy troubles, some amazing traffic, and a stop off at Starbucks (hooray!)
Tired Amy.  Sicky Benny.  PS- Family restrooms are awesome.

Mission accomplished.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Even cute babies take bad pictures

Let me start by saying that I love our baby, Ben.  He's the best.  See previous posts for reasons why.

Having said that, he takes some really strange pictures.  I mean, I try to present this kid in the best light, but he can sure make some weird faces if you catch him at the right time.  I've selected just a few below to illustrate.  I didn't include the 10 million pictures we have of him with boogers and food all over his face.  Why do we take some many pictures of kids with food and boogers on their faces?  Is it because there faces are typically covered with either food or boogers?

I could also create a collage of pictures of Ben sleeping.  But I don't have time for that now.  Again, I'm not sure why we take some many pictures of Ben sleeping, because it's the same each time.  His eyes are closed, he's laying down in or on something, and he's being inanimate.  Wouldn't seem like there are enough variables to note for posterity sake.  Oh for goodness sake.  Here are some sleeping Ben picture.  You talked me into it.

Have a good day!

Saturday, December 15, 2012

So long to my 20s

So long to my 20's.  It's been...rough.

I'm not sure I have any great pictures to accompany this post and frankly it'd take too much effort to go find some and scan 'em in at this point.  And, I'm tired now.  I'm 30 years old tomorrow, which means I'll get tired more easily than the today.  I'll start going to bed at 9pm, just after I finish perusing the Reader's Digest.  I'll start shopping at Eddie Bauer (again.)  I'll develop an affinity for drinking hot tea and become a prolific crossword puzzle solver.  I'll eat oatmeal for breakfast because I think it tastes good.  I'll buy shoes based only on their comfort level and my knees will hurt when a storm is brewing.

Oh, I hope not.  As my husband reminded me just before we got married, "you'll still be you and I'll still be me."  He's a pretty smart dude.  I easily get caught up in huge life transitions and think that everything is going to change overnight.  It doesn't.  But still, where in the world did 30 years old come from?  My twin brother and I have texted and chatted a bit more in the last few weeks and I always bring up the fact that "we're going to be thirty!"  That's not fresh our of college or mid-twenties.  I'm an established adult.  We had our first babysitter the other night (for our son, not us) and she was 20 years old which means that I'm TEN years older than her.  It's not the accuracy of my math that shocks me, but the fact that there is a distinct generation gap now between me and people graduating from high school and college.  I'm their senior. 

But enough is enough.  I'm over it.  And following with the "I'll still be me" concept I'd like to make a short list* of who I'll "still be" tomorrow when I enter a new life stage.
*In no particular order and not all-inclusive because my memory isn't what it was when I was younger.

I'll still be...
  • Amy Michelle Warren
  • A Kansan, and more importantly a Jayhawk!
  • A follower of Jesus
  • A wife to a crazy-cool man
  • A mom to one of the cutest 9 month-olds around
  • The girl who loves dancing around the house
  • A tap and ballet teacher
  • A crafty person- it's nice that I already have a leg up on sewing because I think that's what you're "supposed" to take on when you turn 30
  • A goofball
  • A friend to many wonderful people
  • The wannabe interior decorator/designer
  • A film major from KU
  • A imperfect perfectionist
  • Too hard on myself
  • Learning to love myself more
  • Learning to eat chocolate a little less
  • The one who makes jokes in a group to ease any tension
  • The girl who cries when I'm happy, sad, confused, overwhelmed, touched, and angry
So that's not an all-inclusive list, but it's a start.   There were a lot of low points in my twenties that I'm happy to leave behind.  I'm glad to say that the last 5 years were a drastic up-swing.  Life is pretty great right now.  I think my 30's will be a force to be reckoned with.

Here are some of my favorite recent pics...because I remember now that no one reads blog posts without pictures.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

8 months is practically a year

If you live with me long enough then you'll learn that I'm a "rounder."  I round everything up.  Time. Dates.  Progress estimations.  On a general Saturday at my house Daniel will ask what we want to do in the evening and I'll reply, "it's 4:00. The day is practically over."  Somehow in my brain, time works like that.  Sure, we have a legitimate 6 or 7 hours before we'll get to bed, but for some reason, the small pessimist in me sees the glass half empty. 

When Ben recently turned 8 months old, I caught myself thinking, "well, he's practically a year old!"  He may as well be a toddler, and better yet, he's almost off to college.  I guess I have loved these first 8 months so incredibly much that I WANT THE REST OF THE YEAR TO SLOW DOWN.  Please.

As frustrating as parenthood can be, we've had a great go at it thus far.  I still remember Ben making his first 'coo' noises, and trying to sit up for the first time with me pushing him back (gently) on our bed and saying, "no, you're dad isn't home!"  I remember him trying so hard to learn to roll over.  The first "da-da" noises.  With every new stage I grieve a little as I celebrate the new independence Ben gains.  Dang, this kid is awesome.

So let's take a gentle stroll down memory lane as we look at how little Ben, or Tank, as some of our friends loving call him, has grown in the last 8 months.  I kinda just wanted to put a collage together of the monthly photos anyway.  Also, surprisingly, I don't feel annoyed by the fact that they are thematically and background-ing-ly(?) inconsistent.
Okay, now I got to go wake him up from a 4 hour nap.  I'm not kidding.  He's been napping a lot this week and played a little too hard at daycare this morning, apparently.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

The Knead & Feed

Daniel, Ben and I spent a lovely morning in Coupeville at a local eatery, The Knead & Feed.  It was delicious. I'm happy to say we've found our 2nd establishment for the list of places we'll take out-of-town guests.  Russell Warren, my brother-in-law, would love this place.
There are few tables inside and one is a long family-style table.  The sun was pouring in the windows and we smelled of cooked eggs and baked goods when we left.  (So glad I didn't shower beforehand b/c I'd be a little disappointed to smell like eggs the rest of the day, whereas now I feel completely fine with showering when I get home.)  SIDE NOTE:  I worked at a breakfast restaurant for about 4 years during college summers and ALWAYS smelled like eggs and grease and pancakes when I got home.  It permeated my skin.
So Daniel and I had independently heard of this place and were dying to try their food.  Daniel got a scramble concoction of eggs, tomatoes, potatoes, broccoli, cheese, and other local vegetables.  So scrumptious...  It went well with his side of a cinnamon roll with raisins the size of Ben's head.  I got a short stack of true buttermilk pancakes and some eggs.  Holy mackerel it was delicious. 
As we got back in the car we were both comfortably stuffed, but not regrettably so.  It was a lovely morning with my two dudes, nice conversation, and a fantastic start to this weekend.

Here's to hoping you also get to eat buttermilk pancakes soon!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Bathtime Benny

I'm over trying to justify my blogging habits.  I don't write often. So, I've renamed my blog to be The Warren DnA.  Fun because my husband's name is Daniel and my name is Amy so D-and-A.  Get it?  And we have a baby now.  Baby's come from two grown-ups by way of genes and DNA stuff so it fits.

My next blog will be about what it means to be a Warren, (i.e. the innate qualities of my husband and his brothers) which include:  sarcasm, correcting other people's grammar, being loving towards their wives/girlfriends/mom, incredible skill with a hobby, intelligence, humor, and other Warrenesque traits.  I'll also include a detailed rundown of how this will play into Benjamin's upbringing and why he will be one of the coolest people we know.  Then I'll follow up with an article detailing how the Biggs-side of the DNA chain will come into play during Ben's bid for President and perhaps earlier in his life.

And I digress.

My BFF showed me FotoFlexr, though, and that has changed my blogging life.  This is fun.  I can click 'Upload' like a champ and put pictures on already-designed collages.  That's a cinch and therefore enough of a help to make me want to blog just a little bit.

This month's subject:  The Many Emotions of Bathtime Benny
We have not been the type of parents to work bath time into our nightly routine with Ben.  He didn't really like baths at first and I didn't think he needed them that often since he was laying around like a bump on a log.  Even now we don't give him many baths and his skin is just fine...just give him 15 years and it'll be a whole other story based on my teenage skin experience.

Once Ben started sitting up and we put him in an over-sized blow-up duck for baths, he's had a blast.  He splashes all over and makes the goofiest faces.  I can't believe how much he's growing up!  One of my favorite parts of giving him a bath is when he makes a big splash that shocks him and then he starts to giggle.

Ben does NOT like getting out of the bath.  About 60 seconds after he realizes he's not in water and is laying on a towel getting dried off he begins to cry.  We make our best effort to do the whole towel-diaper-pajama changeroo quickly, but some tears are inevitable.   And then it's time to style the hair!

I was bald as a baby for a big chunk of time, so where got this head of hair, I have no idea.  I don't always style his hair, but when I do I put some California Baby soothing lotion on his head and smooth it around.  It smells amazing and Ben will flutter or close his eyes as I do it, I assume because it feels good.
*Please note:  the names of the hairstyles are not indicative of Ben's political or social affiliation

So sit back and stare at his cute little expressions.  Let them permeate your soul and fill you with happiness.  God gave Daniel and I a really funny Benjamin.  Thanks, Lord!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Blogging is scary

Yes, blogging is scary.

I have great ideas in my head that rarely transfer the way I want.  I forget and then am untimely with my pictures and stories.  Frankly, I'd rather be spending my time sewing or making cards, or playing with by baby boy.  However...

I have apparently been ordered by my blogging friends to resume blogging, oh and do it more than quarterly.  When I say "blogging friends" I don't mean that I am part of a social circle of people brought together by their love of blogging, I mean that I have great lifelong friends that just so happen to be prolific bloggers.  Their blog designs are amazing, they write and spell good (wink), and they update their pages ALL THE TIME!!

Case and point:  Boots and Bling: How Kat and Tim do Rural

My best friend of nearly 21 years (HOLY MACKEREL!) writes a super fun blog about her life.  For a girl who lives in Western Kansas, aka Starbucks-is-45-minutes-away-land, she's got a lot of fun stuff going on. 

So here's a funny story about Katherine. I used to think I was much funnier than her.  There. I said it.  I was honest about this one time with her.  I consider myself a funny person, however, I realize that my humor is better at the spur of the moment.  Kat has always been fun to be around, but somewhere in 11th grade she hit humor puberty and all of a sudden began cracking me up.  What she has over me now is that she's a funny writer.  She can be pleasant and clever and efficient with her blogging. Me? I hate the whole text part of blogging. 

I wish I had a good photo to go along with this. I realize that photos are 95% of why people read blogs anyway.  Instead, I'll include an awesome photo of Katherine and I singing at church camp back in middle school.  I also used to think I was a better singer than Katherine.  I was definitely wrong about that.  Hmmm, it actually is starting to sound like I was a little overconfident back in the day.

Oh, and the other friend putting on the pressure is Rachel.  She designs blogs, posts amazing pictures, and is one of the best multi-taskers I've ever met.  See what I'm talking about here.