Monday, May 11, 2015


Wet morning. I'm glad. Seeds planted, seedlings mostly in place as well -- we need the water. But, with showers come the gray skies, the cooler temperatures. And a breakfast in the kitchen. Lilacs inside, lilacs outside. That is the truest sign of mid May.


After, I throw some old bread for the cheepers (oops, Butter is back in the roost... must save her some for later)...


...and give a quick glance over the yard. The plants by the path to the house are at their richest now, measured by the vast array of greens, still spring-like and delicate, but also so very lush. Here's one of Ed's mom's bronze statues, blending in so well by the Solomon's Seal.


Along the same path, I've moved out the monarda (too tall, uncontrolled, and mosquito friendly for planting close to the door) and moved in the heuchera (coral bells).


And still, my gaze today returns to the crab apples, now in their final days of splendid white petals, as abundant on the path as on the branches!


But I don't linger. (Backing out along the gravel driveway, I give a nod to the tulips -- these lightly tinted pink and white ones are real treasures.)


It's an unusual day for me because I need to be at Snowdrop's home all day long, from her wake up moment (which, admittedly, happens rather on the late side)...


... until late afternoon.

Her routines are lovely and simple: I bathe her, dress her and sit her up for just a moment as I get her food ready.


She then gets her quiet (digestive!) time, on her back, with a toy (big bear Ed this time)...


And finally, there are the challenges: tummy time, books to read, stand-up play stations to master. And maybe because it's Monday, or more likely because she is that much older, her efforts are that much greater. The pushups are grand...


She is fully engaged in book reading (photo taken on a timer, so you never know what will come of it!)...


And she gives a good effort at keeping upright, even as her toes barely touch the floor in her play station.


As always, I wear her out. I type this as she catches a few precious moments napping, before we start our play again -- variations on familiar themes and yet so new, so fresh because she always approaches them with a twist and a turn. In other words, Snowdrop (says a happy grandma!) is never, ever boring.


Lunchtime. I put on her bib and as I do this, we practice vowels.


You think I'm joking, right? No, really -- she loves imitation! Here we are, working on our oooo's!


In the afternoon, the skies clear. It's like a gift -- a couple of hours of brilliant sunshine before we return to clouds. Snowdrop, you and I are going out for a walk! Past the big lake (where you can see the wind rippling the deeply blue waters)...


And then into the quiet, residential neighborhoods which, I think, are so perfect for stroller walks.

This is my day then. Maybe I haven't convinced you of its perfect contours, its lovely details. Believe me, they were there -- all perfect, detailed and contoured!


  1. I like the petal-strewn path. I like the "O" photo!

    I really do think the babies KNOW when you're "having a teaching moment" and they're very keen on it!
    I've read that you should preface a session by saying "watch" with a wide-eyed smile. Of course I've tried it, but we don't get the consistent time together that you do. You lucky girls!

    If some people thought that what you've described today is "pushing" or "drilling" a baby, they'd be wrong. It is joyful for a baby!

    Cadence will focus on me with her determined little frown of concentration. Then she'll mimic. Then she will get all especially bright-eyed, smiley and wiggly. We know how good she's feeling!

    You need to know when it's a receptive time. Then you need to know when to Stop - as you said.
    And it's important to let the baby have lots of hanging out time and even alone time - the stroller ride is perfect for that.

    Oh Nina and Charlotte, I laugh at myself. For being so enraptured. Your fault, Nina, with these so adorable pictures :)

    1. That's a clever idea - to offer the "watch" word.
      It's funny, I never think of them as teaching moments. She looks at me with expectation -- as in, "I want to play. Can you suggest something?" She is so young and the range of games has to be tailored to her abilities. Watching me sing Kumbaya -- with big vowels, greatly exaggerated makes her giggle and more recently -- to imitate. So we do that. As you say, she, like all babies, loves to be engaged.
      What's harder for me is to feel relaxed about giving her time to self amuse. She is also good at that and enjoys (sometimes) being left to her own devices. But I always think that I should save that for her busy parents. They need to prepare meals, accomplish chores, do things to move the day and their work along. Shouldn't I fulfill her demand for attention? This is the harder question for me. If I catch up on my computer work when I am with her, is this good for her or is it only good for me? I err on not giving her huge chunks of time to play alone. I imagine that balance will change over time. Right now, it seems like over-engagement is preferable to missing opportunities for playing/learning (it's sort of the same for them now, isn't it?)
      Thanks for your insights here!

    2. C's mother Mary read something that impressed her and that she is now following: Let your baby watch you working, keep her near you as you work. That may be gardening or it may just be cleaning up in the kitchen. In their home, both parents like to sing. I'm sure that's great for baby!

      I remember Laundry Day very fondly. My mom was more or less my captive (back in the day of ironing everything) as I asked her questions all, all day long :)

  2. BTW, Snowfleurry, could you throw me an email? Thanks! :)

  3. Hi Nina,
    A private note here. I finally published a blog last night but it didn't update on your Friends and Favorites list. I wonder it's because I bought the domain name, so my blog is on that instead of including the "blogspot" in the middle. Although someone using the old link supposedly transfers over, maybe there's something in the app you're using that doesn't make the leap. Thanks. Lee

    1. I updated your address and now it's working fine. Thanks for letting me know!

    2. Thanks. Glad I/we figured it out. I'm unsure of a big benefit, but when google offered the domain name, it seemed like it should be mine and not someone else's.


I welcome comments, but I will not publish submissions that insult or demean, or that are posted anonymously. I am sorry to lose commenting Ocean friends who are not registered, but I want to encourage readers to submit remarks only if they feel they can stand behind their words. I do not seek a free-for-all here. I like camaraderie far more than conflict.