Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Bedtime Conversations

So Bri has been on a robe kick. On a nightly basis, she asks for it - and her pipe....We've also been reading a great new book called, "The Boy Who Wouldn't Share." It's about Edward who would not share any of his toys with his sister, Claire. It begins, "Edward was a frightful boy who would not share a single toy." And he looked the part - greedy, gloomy, and miserable. So when I turn each page, the girls and I have the following conversation:
"Girls, does Edward look happy?" I ask.
"No, sad." They reply quickly and in unison.
"How come?" I ask....
At that, Mia and Bri would never really know what to say next. So I decided to try on a new little family axiom: "Because there's no joy in hoarding," I'd answer, annunciating each word with great deliberation.
And for days I would always repeat this at the end of each page and began to wonder when the girls might catch on. Last night, Bri finally gave it a shot. I asked, "How come?" She grinned knowingly and said, "Bo yoi ge oar-eng!"

bri sandwich


big sis, little sis

amazing mom

This is from January but captures just a glimpse of how sweet my daughters are, how incredible my wife is....

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Memorial Weekend Pool & Dance Party

So I never thought that we would ever throw a dance and pool party but life has a way of surprising you.


Memorial Weekend Pool & Dance Party Part 2

Hadley "Smooth" Deeble

Hadley has recently earned herself another nickname, "Smooth". She already is far more coordinated and smooth at getting herself out of tricky situations than Mia or Brianna ever were. Bri has had a bruise somewhere on her head ever since she was 6 months old. Falling and hitting her head is still a daily occurence. Mia too trips and falls a lot.

But Hadley! She is in a whole different league. No pressure of course, but we already are betting that she will be our athlete. This picture shows one of her favorite perches. Has she fallen yet you might ask. No, not really! But it still makes her mother nervous.

Just when I thought doing the dishes was getting easier

Over the past year I have had to learn the hard way how to do the dishes because the girls can unload faster than I can load.

My new method is to prewash everything and stack it on the counter. Then when the girls are strapped into their highchairs, with no gettting down, I open up the dishwasher and quickly load. Or if I don't get to it while they are in their chairs, I put on a video for them and load quickly hoping that the lure of the video is stronger than the clank of dishes.

As of late their interest has been waning in the dishwasher. But just when I thought I was in the clear I have another new little helper that is going to make me have to refine my technique yet again.

Friday, May 15, 2009

thoughts while downloading coldplay's free live album

(sharing the love, click here for coldplay)

So I'm on day 5. Which any addict will tell you is still not enough time to see if you're truly free. But 5 days is still a long time to be without something, anything - let alone your sweet wife and raging-with-life little girls. And after those 5 days, I have thoughts:
  • Life alone for a day, good. Two days, rich. Three days, bad.

  • Domestication wanes.

  • Sleep habits are easily broken. College sleep is primal.

  • We need darker shades.

  • Keiffer and Bower have become kids again.

  • They may even get a walk today.

  • Call your wife even when you think it's not a good time.

  • Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches go well with coffee.

  • The Royals bring me no solace.

  • All my girls need is their "Poppy." Apparently.

  • I'm a jealous human being.

  • Mia and Bri discovered their sense of smell this week.

  • Hadley became a sitter-upper.

  • I missed both occasions while sitting at home listening to sports radio.

  • Sports radio is like chinese water torture.

  • I miss my wife less if I make my bed.

  • This is the first time all spring that I've mowed in daylight.

  • My neighbor, Jeff, offerred to loan me a headlamp.

  • Work begets work.

  • Working late is over-rated.

  • I have not washed bibs in 5 days.

  • Our painter is addicted to my coffee.

  • I'm keeping a tab.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Officially a Sitter

The first picture is horrible lighting but it captures the new Hadley. I heard some yelps for help and this is where I found her.

Today she just decided at lunch that she is now a sitter. Her other favorite past time is still of course pulling up on anything and everything.

More Fun Outside

Such a Big Girl


I'm a Poser Bohemian

I grew up in the burbs and I live in the burbs now. I drive a burb-car. And, sometimes, an even more burb-like van. We have two garage doors. They open with a button that I click. We have a front yard, a side yard, and a back yard. Picket fence. We buy our art from Bed Bath and Beyond, our clothes from Old Navy. My socks match my pants. Always. We have 8 pillows on our bed, our duvee sports a sunny, floral design.
I love this life I live - with my beautiful wife and 3 incredible daughters (whom I miss, BIG TIME). And truthfully, there really is nothing bohemian about me.
And yet downtown has always been my favorite place to be. Here, the coffee tastes better and people seem more interesting. And this is what makes my study leave this week so inspiring. A friend from church runs what's called the "Arts Incubator" in the Crossroads District - a 3 story "warehouse" of art exhibit spaces, reception rooms, and art studios. He gave me a key and free run of the joint. It's a perfect place of solitude, though, because I no longer live bohemian hours and have yet to see a real live artist at work. Truth is, I think I'm more boomer than I want to admit.
Here are some pix.

From the street looking up.
This is "my" studio that was loaned to me for the week.

The Art Incubator just happens to sit on one of my favorites streets, across from one of the more popular eating joints in town.

How about that for a sun nook, huh?

One just feels cool when down here.

One of the best bumper stickers I've seen in a long time....

This will be Brianna's first bumper sticker that she owns. The girl's addicted to the white stuff.

just as she predicted...

The irises have bloomed. Elise was certain that the very day she left, they would pop. Sure enough, this is the first thing I saw when I woke up yesterday morning.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Happy Birthday Daddy!!

Happy Birthday Daddy! We miss you already and we are so bummed that we don't get to spend your birthday with you. For your birthday we thought we would give you a good night's rest. :) We hope you enjoyed it.

Monday, May 11, 2009


The girls are so excited to be at Nana and Poppy's house that they are doing summersaults.

Smelling Flowers with Nana

So the girls had a blast their first night at Nana and Poppy's house. I came downstairs from putting Hadley to bed to find them shooting baskets in the garage. My first thought was how are they in the garage because I am sure my mom didn't know where their shoes were. Well, this was their first childhood experience of playing outside barefoot. They loved it.

They ran. They rolled in the grass. They smelled the flowers. They smelled the flowers some more. Brianna is in love with smelling flowers. Mia then started smelling rocks.

It was a good night. They were having so much fun that mommy even let them stay up past their bedtime.

Oh the joys of being a child and playing outside barefoot past bedtime.

Barefoot in the Grass

Sunday, May 10, 2009

We Dedicated Hadley Barton to the Lord Today...

Today was a big day. It was Mother's Day. It was our anniversary. And it was the day that we dedicated Hadley to Jesus. Pretty cool. Pretty crazy.

We were quite the sight. Mia wanted snacks, Bri was flirting with an older man (which made me wonder if we should dedicate her again), and Hadley was slippery to hold in her dress. I really wondered if I was going to drop her. Now wouldn't THAT have been a story? Right up there with Boris Yelstin who claimed that, when he was baptized as an infant, the drunk priest left him in the water basin...(or something like that).

And so, now. The house is quiet. My wife is asleep on the couch and I am preparing to be alone for the next 6 days. We've hired a painter to come in and finish up all the little paint jobs that Elise and I...Okay, let's be honest, that ELISE didn't have time to finish before Bri came. Or Mia came. Or before Hadley came. Whichever.

I've finally convinced Elise that we'll never "get to it" ourselves. So the dude comes tomorrow. Says he'll need a week. And we don't want the girls around the fumes. So six days. Dang.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Desperate Times Call For Desperate Measures...

I (dan) am working on my Mother's Day Sermon - discussing what I'm calling the "Bermuda Triangle of Identity" for Moms - idealism, comparison, and guilt. As I was writing today on the idealism section, I was reminded of how Elise and I once had very different ideas about the role of television in our home.

Silly us.

My Competitive Nature

My youngest sister accused me yesterday of being competitive. I emailed her and told her that she needed to let her 8 month old daughter know that Hadley was schooling her again. :)

I shouldn't be gloating because Hadley's new skills have made my life even more complicated.

Why do we buy toys?

I do not know why we waste our money and buy the girls toys. Hadley's current favorite things are the wipes box, remote controls, bookshelves, staircase and of course "the dog food". Yep, she has entered into the dog food club. The nice thing is now the girls help me make sure that she doesn't eat it.

One of my new favorite lines of Mia's is "No, No, Baby" and all time favorite is "Excuse me Baby".

Here Haldey is showcasing a few of her favorite items. Somehow she didn't get the memo that she was suppose to learn to sit up before she learned to pull up. Consequently I now hear crying from Hadley quite a bit as she gets stuck standing and can't get back down.

7 Months Old

Hadley turned 7 months old on Tuesday, May 5th. She is growing like a weed.

Saturday, May 2, 2009


So one of the best things that we did was build or I should say have some handy friends build a swing set. Thank you Burt and Chris!!! I was pregnant and forbidden to help. :)
Anyway, here are some pics to show how much the girls have changed in one year. The girls have totally reversed on their preferences. Mia at first loved swinging and wasn't the least bit afraid. Bri started out a little scared and we had to not push her very high. Now Mia will only swing on the big girl swing and Bri could swing for hours.

Spring 2008:

Spring 2009

Mia Spring 2008
Mia Spring 2009

Bri Spring 2008Bri Spring 2009

Hadley Spring 2009