Thursday, March 31, 2011

"Doug" and "Bubbles"

Meggie's vocabulary is taking off...come join in the fun:
(you may want to turn off the music first)

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Project and Other Reports

My cousin thankfully reminded me today that I needed to update my blog about the mysterious project.

Last week, I was convicted through my BSF bible study that I need to make more of a purposeful effort to wake up early (before Meggie) to spend quiet time in scripture and prayer. Up until this point, I usually do my reading during Meg's nap, but have noted that the days when I did happen to wake up early were always marked with a deepened sense of peace, less anxiety, and more productivity. Our teacher's question to us was this: what things are preventing you from giving your best time to God? My heart answered: "One Born Every Minute" - this new show that comes on at 9:00 on the Lifetime channel, Tuesday nights. Or, rather, going to bed super late because I'm up watching this tv show. And because I'm not really a "morning" person...I tend to need until about lunchtime before I'm fully awake.

After this answer came to mind, I immediately began thinking of all the justifications to do with WHY I shouldn't give up this show: "But, we already gave up cable - this is like my one of two shows I watch every week. Sometimes, I just want to 'veg' out and not think about anything - especially after a hard parenting day, etc."

And, then, I thought: why not just try it? Why not make a commitment for this week to try and get in the bed by 8:00 every night - not necessarily with the goal of sleeping right away, but in the hopes that if I'm in bed earlier, I'll fall asleep earlier, making it easier to wake up predictably at 6:00 am - turning myself from "night owl" to "early bird" and growing closer to God?

That was my project...go to bed earlier, wake up earlier, make a purposeful effort to begin my day in the Word. For the most part, I made the goal of getting to bed by 8:00 - some days, though, it was more like 9:30, but still an improvement from my usual 11:00. My conclusions are as follows:

1. Even though I went to bed earlier, it was still hard for me to get up at 6:00 when my alarm went off. I guess I really am just a night owl by's going to take a lot more discipline for me to consistently wake up early.

2. I think Meggie could hear my alarm, or else sense when I'm up, because it seems that the earlier I wake up, the earlier she wakes up. Most days, when I stumbled my way bleary-eyed into the living room, I could hear her start to stir.

3. I liked being cut off from technology so early in the made for much more restful nights. BUT, I do feel a greater alienation from the larger internet community (i.e. email, FB, blogging). With such an early bedtime, I didn't have enough time between when Meg went to bed and my own self-imposed time to email or blog - the usual time when I do these things. Or pick up the house. So, even though I felt more rested in the long run, I did feel like I lost a lot of time in terms of relationships and cleanliness.

4. I didn't really achieve my goal of spending more time with God in the mornings. I was still more consistent at following through during Meg's nap. On the mornings when I was able to make it up, I could hear Meg waking up and became stressed, or felt so groggy that it was hard for me to concentrate.

5. I didn't know until later, but all last week Douglass had a horrible bladder infection. SO, he was awake all nights, most nights having to go to the bathroom. It was like having a newborn. I felt like I didn't sleep a wink - which could be contributing to my lingering feelings of exhaustion in the mornings despite going to bed so early. Between Douglass and being so pregnant, I was hard-pressed to get any real rest last week.

Overall, I enjoyed and felt challenged by dedicating my nighttime to going to bed earlier. I think, though, a more realistic time for me is to be in bed by 9:30/10:00, because I do still hope to make an early bird out of myself. I also realized that, as with all things, I couldn't make this goal happen on my own. I've been learning to pray for God to give me the time I need, rest I need, motivation I need to rouse in the mornings. When I pray for time specifically, I find that Meggie does sleep longer - love it.


In other reports, Kyle came home for a quick overnight visit before going back on the road again. I cajoled him into taking my 29 week pregnancy picture. Oh, third trimester, am I ever feeling you!

For comparison, here's a picture of Meggie and me at 28 weeks pregnant. Wouldn't it be great to be on the beach today? Kyle and I were on our babymoon...sigh...

Okay, back to reality. For a healthy and fun dose of real life...look what happens these days when we try to get Meggie to pose in a picture with us:

And because you had to wait so long for an update, here are some more recent pictures of our Meggie girl. These were taken at the zoo playground with her buddy, Isaac. Oh! Before I forget...Meggie's vocabulary is absolutely taking off. :) Her new word from today: "Doug." She can really, truly say Douglass' name and is so proud of herself, as am I! I got a great video of her saying it over and over along with her second favorite new word, "bubbles," which I'll post be sure to stop on back by and check it out! Love her precious voice!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


I've been working on a project this week that I want to share with you more about in a few days. It's a project that's exciting and challenging for me, but it does cut into my blogging until then, I also had to share the happy news that:

1. I ordered our new crib yesterday.
2. Along with a new mattress...
3. And used a coupon to purchase the mattress pad and sheets today!

I feel so accomplished. hehe. I DO, though, feel better knowing that this new Baby Girl will for sure have her own place to sleep should she decide to come early. This way, we'll have everything here, ready, and waiting to assemble when Daddy comes home. And, then, I'll also be able to post pictures of the new "nursery"...aka guest bedroom shared with nursery-to-be-turned into-girls' room-in-about-1.5-years-room.

Will fill you in soon on the project!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Quick and Unconnected Reflections...

This week I've had my hands and heart full of a mischievous child and undulating emotions. Many times I've come to my writing spot to begin this post, many times I've heard a cry from the "no-nap-this-week" bedroom, had to shush a dog barking madly at the doorbell, had to seek the Lord in prayer instead. So here we are, tomorrow's Friday, and I'm gonna do my best to document this week's life in a few quick and unconnected reflections.

1. I'll start with my birthday because that was, by far, my most favoritest part. March 16th I turned 27-years-old. (By the way, how fantastic is it that I'm turning 27 the same week that Baby Girl turned 27 weeks old?) The whole day I felt so loved through phone calls, cards, and sweet messages. Meggie and Kyle did a terrific job making the day special for me - my one birthday request was that we stay home as a family, but that I didn't want to have to think, plan, or make dinner. Kyle completely and lovingly delivered with a homemade dinner of grilled steaks, baked potatoes, green beans, bread, and even an icecream cake so that Meggie could share in the celebration, too. Meggie and I got to play outside in the sun while Daddy made dinner and we opened presents after we ate. Kyle took over and did Meggie's whole bath and bedtime routine after which we curled up on the couch and watched a chick flick of my choosing ("Life as We Know it."). was a lovely, lovely day...and even though 27 is starting to sound pretty old to my ears, I'm glad we're "getting up there" as they say - seeing as we ARE about to bring a second baby into the world. Happy 27 weeks to you, too, my precious baby girl!

2. We had our 27/28 week appointment on my birthday, too. It was a doozy. I had the glucose screening test (thankfully, I passed with normal results - 111/130 points) and the Rhogam shot. The Rhogam shot is given to all mothers with a negative Rh factor in the 28th week of pregnancy. Then, the baby's blood is typed after birth and if the baby has a positive Rh factor, the mother is given another shot. The Rh factor really only makes a difference if the Rh negative mother is married to an Rh positive father...Kyle and I happen to represent such a match. I was thankful that Meggie has my blood type so that I didn't have to get a second shot. I don't remember the shot hurting as much with Meggie as it did with Baby #2. They make you stand with your hands on the table, drop your drawers, and you can guess what follows. HUGE. shot. But, all worth it, of course! :)

Baby Girl got a healthy report. Her heartbeat is still hovering around 150 and she's head down. She moved her little knee when the midwife was measuring my stomach. The midwife smiled and described body parts as she could feel them through my skin: "This is her head, nestled way down here, this is her back, oooh and that was a little knee or foot that just moved." Hearing her describe Baby Girl this way - a mixture of body parts - somehow made this process of growing a baby so much more real to me. I know I'm pregnant, I see my growing body, I was present at her one and only ultrasound, but I'm so focused on Baby Girl #1 during the day that there's not much time left over to love on Baby Girl #2 while she's still on the inside. Suddenly, at my appointment yesterday, I had the realization that another is on the way. A baby that's like Meggie, but not Meggie. Part me and part Kyle again, but different. And, oh my word, this baby's coming soon!

3. I've been having strange heart palpitations. Not all the time, not every day, but enough to make me notice and feel flutters of concern. I mentioned these palpitations to the midwife, so they added a thyroid test to my bloodwork yesterday. The results came back normal - for which I'm grateful - but it means that these heart things are a result of what I feared they might be all along. Stress. Kyle leaves again tomorrow...and when he gets back, he's deploying for another six weeks right before Baby Girl comes. He mentioned to me yesterday that he overheard me saying on the phone to a number of people that I thought my heart palpitations were a result of being stressed because he's leaving. He told me he was confused because this was something I had never brought up to him before. "Are you stressed or worried that I'm leaving, Shannon?" He asked.

The thing is, it's not a new stress. It's a constant stress that's underscored the last two and some years. It's the stress that we live with knowing that he's never home for good, that even though we're glad he's home, there will come a period soon in which it'll just be me and the girls again. It's an ever-present stress - one that I didn't understand fully when we got married, but that we do our best to accept and use to make the time home, sweeter, more content. It's just that now I guess I'm starting to feel more vulnerable, more clumsy, more connected to this third-trimester state. And the dread of being alone, one that doesn't usually bother me much, has been creeping into my consciousness this week. I dread him leaving. I dread the quiet weekends. I dread having to answer Meggie's innocent questions about, "Daddy? Daddy?" I dread seeing douglass waiting for hours by our big window, waiting for his friend to come home. And this dread is stressing me and my little heart out...and causing me to feel an unusual sadness.

4. I've decided that when we move away, I One day, like Monday, it's forecasted to be 75 degrees and sunny, but is instead 40 degrees and overcast. Then, it rains. Then, it tornadoes. Then, it forest fires. Then, like today, it's forecasted to be 75 degrees and sunny, but is instead 90 degrees and boiling - with wind like nobody's business. In aforementioned vulnerable, emotional state, I NEED this place to commit to spring. Come on spring!

5. Today is St. Patrick's Day. One of the toughest adjustments for me post-wedding day was getting used to a new last name. Van Heest is sooo...Dutch - foreign to me. O'Connell was sooo...round, lyrical, Irish, and me. I was supposed to be a Kate or a Kelly, but when I popped out the day before St. Patrick's Day and with red hair, my parents declared me a Shannon. Together with "O'Connell," I was always asked the question: "Are you Irish?" And, so, I had a strong Irish identity tied up in this day and my last name. Since I got married, not one person has asked me this question - and I miss it. I take small consolation from the fact that though I go by "Van Heest" for our children to feel unified, I never dropped the O'Connell from my name - just added Kyle's last name to my SS card. I'm still an O'Connell under all this new identity...and I'm still just as in love with St. Patty's Day.

6. March Madness has started and I'm glad for the distraction. So, on this last night of him being home, I'm gonna run and go eat the rest of my ice cream cake and watch a game with my basketball-loving hubs.

Thanks for sticking around with me through funny emotions and unconnected ramblings - here's to next week looking better!

I didn't know Kyle was snapping away while we were opening presents...clearly, Meggie and I were not ready for this one. :)

I want to point you to the pile of laundry in the background of this picture: I have a little monkey girl who likes who drag out all my piles of folded laundry, flop herself on top of them, roll around, and shout: "Cloooo - clooooo!"

He wanted to capture my reaction when I opened his present: a new super zoom lens for my camera! I had no idea he was scheming this idea and was totally suprised...and what I was thinking in this moment was: I can't wait to take pictures of my two scrumptious girls with this!

check out this gourmet birthday feast! Thank you, K!

and, of course, a couple of Meggie from the park today...

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Weekend Doings

Our weekend was busy with nesting for Baby Girl. Slowly, slowly, we are reorganizing and sorting through the guest bedroom to turn into a new nursery for now and the girls' room for the future while clearing clutter out of the house. Kyle and I finished going through our closet this weekend (amen!) and got caught up on the laundry (finally!). Though we still have a long way to go before Baby Girl's debut, each little thing we cross off the list feels like it brings her significantly closer to our home.

On Friday, we had some DR Horton warranty workers over to fix our sagging deck and two lopsided door frames. Meggie loved watching them work through the "big" window. She kept waving, saying, "hiiii - hiiii."

We also received and assembled the first piece of two-baby equipment: our double jogging stroller. (A birthday present from my mom, Meggie's Grandmama) Not that I'll ever jog with it...I just wanted something extra sturdy to trek around in our country neighborhood and to take to parks. Meggie's been infatuated with it since it arrived and wants to constantly sit inside or figure out how the buckles and food trays work. I remember that when we were preparing for Meggie to come, the first nursery article that we purchased was her changing table. After Kyle assembled it, I just let it sit for days in our living room because each time I walked by it, ran my hands over it imagining a baby there, the presence of it made our baby seem real. I did the same with this stroller - just aching to feel Baby Girl in my arms. Maybe Meg's doing the same thing? :)

Kyle's refinishing his old childhood dresser for the girls' room. Though he's electric sanding the main frame, he's having to use hand sanders for the niches on the drawers. Meggie helped, today. It was a rainy, overcast day, so they brought their project indoors. There was a lot of correcting like: "Only sand the drawers, Meg. Meg come back and help Da-da. Meeeegggiiiee - the sand paper doesn't go in our mouths, it just goes on the wood." But, mostly there was work and happy memories. I treasure the way Kyle wants to include Meggie in our preparations for her sister and his patience in teaching her practical skills. This will be one girl who knows how to use tools:

she's a climber - and with good balance, too.

watching Daddy

I don't know why the font just switched to bold and underlined, but I'll go with it...And, because she's the reason for all the activity, here's Baby Girl at 27 weeks, our cauliflower baby. She's around 2 lbs. and 14.5 inches long. I can hardly fathom that in one week we'll officially be in the third trimester. June 12th, you're coming faster every second, but we can't wait to behold this prize in the making.
oh, and a little douglass dog for good measure! :)

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Because Meggie Loves to Help Unload Groceries...

She's my little helper, that's for sure. One of her favorite ways to help me right now is unloading all of the cans from the grocery bags and stacking them into towers. Besides her helping personality, I also treasure that she appears to have a scientific, analytical mind. Different from mine in that way, I look forward to what she'll be able to teach me over the years as her mama...and witnessing the many ways this trait will be expressed over her lifetime.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Allergy Update #1 and Sticker-palooza

A lot of people have been asking how Meggie's doing since her 18 month check-up and no eggs:

I'm super happy to report that she's thriving! She does have a runny nose which I can't tell if it's coming from environmental allergies or teething - she's cutting her 2 year-old molars...can you believe she's on teeth numbers 17-20??? at least those are her last baby teeth and we'll only have one teething baby come June - but her ears are still clear. Cutting out eggs has been a challenge, but has been easier to manage than I anticipated. The hardest meal of the day is probably lunch as I still haven't ventured out to the whole foods/organic store to pick up egg-less bread. No bread eliminates a lot of options for toddlers such as PB & Js, grilled cheeses, pizza, etc. There's also been a steep learning curve for me at the grocery store. Last week I headed to the store, list in hand, and spent over an hour there reading every ingredient on every box. I'm hoping the egg lingo will become second nature as we go through this process.

To combat the anemia as well as just to all-around simplify, we've done a little rearranging of our daily schedule to make more room for meal planning and to give priority to eating. I've committed to making it a priority that we only leave the house (by car) once-a-day. We've made exceptions to this rule for important occasions, but for the most part, I'm trying to consolidate errands and intentionally plan outings. The extra time at home has seemed to help me with cooking and encouraging Meggie to eat foods she normally refuses. This lesson in simplification is a hard one for me not only because I'm a people pleaser, finding it hard to say, "no," to spontaneous offers that pop up, but also because I enjoy being busy and on-the-go. What I'm learning more and more about my child, though, is that she needs a lot of quiet time at home to feel restored and settled.

I made this realization today after comparing the pleasantness of our evening with the harried meltdown of yesterday. Today, Meggie and I had BSF in the morning, came home, ate lunch, took naps, and then just played around the house until dinner, bath, and bedtime. Meggie impressed me with how well she did independently playing while I made dinner and then impressed me further by how much and how well she ate during dinner. Last night, I had a bible study to go to and Kyle was late getting home. I knew we'd have to tag-team it for me to make the study on time and somehow, I must have been communicating an anxious/unsettled vibe to Meggie. Every time I tried to get her started on an activity, she would run back to me at the stove crying, "Maaaa-maaaa!" and begging to be held. Whoo, we were both frazzled by the end of the night. What I'm coming to understand about her little personality is that she needs a lot of time to gear up/settle down for and from activities and that she does best when stimulation is limited to one or two big things per day.

All this thinking reminded me of when she was an itty baby...even from early on in the hospital, she was extremely sensitive to light and sound. When there were too many people, too much noise, too much light, she needed to be taken back to her nursery and soothed with rocking, shushing, and dim lights. I found that she took the best naps when we'd go to her room about 20 minutes prior to nap time, turn down the lights, turn on the sound machine, and just "be" for a time. Usually, she enjoyed her bouncy seat and I would fold laundry. Something quiet, soothing, restful. I came to know about Meggie that she just wasn't one of those babies that would do well being carted everywhere from place to place, person to person without a schedule or being in her "own" environment. She needed her room, her crib, her routine to thrive the best.

And...I don't know why I thought this would change as she got older, but I'm coming to realize that being more intentional about staying home is how that need for predictability and her "ownness" looks to Meggie the toddler. When I make these changes for her, she sleeps better, eats better, is more content. So much of parenting is a constant study of each individual child, I'm learning. There's no such thing as "brain dumping" here. Every piece of information about your child is vital to their well-being.

For fun, here are the iron-fortified menus we tried this week:

Wednesday...grilled chicken, broccoli (cause if there's one veggie she'll eat it's broccoli), and brown rice. She ate every last bite. I was a proud mama. beans and rice (the healthy version). She loved the sausage, ate a few of the beans, and tried the rice. It was a little spicy, so maybe that was what turned her off.

Friday...baked tilapia, asparagus, and red dill potatoes. This one she refused before we even set down her plate - a mystery to me because she used to LOVE tilapia and asparagus.

Saturday...tangy turkey burgers with sweet potato fries. She couldn't get enough of the sweet potato fries, but shunned the turkey in favor of the condiments. Funny girl.

Sunday...we went to the agape feast at our church, a pot-luck dinner and the Lord's Supper. I made mac-n-cheese which Meggie couldn't eat because of the eggs, but we did find her some ham, grapes, and grilled chicken there. OH, I also broke down and fed her crumbles of a cupcake just to keep her quiet for a few extra minutes. I don't think it bothered her too much because the rest of the service I had to chase her up and down the church halls...boy, that girl has some speed. chard (I substituted kale) and white bean soup with cornbread. To my surprise, she ate every drop of this soup in her bowl including the greens. She's a bean and green eating machine. A note about the cornbread: I had heard that I could sometimes substitute bananas for eggs when baking. I tried it with the cornbread...and found out why the cornbread recipe calls for eggs - it's the binding agent. :) They tasted yummy, but you kinda had to eat them in crumbs mushed together. Now I know.

Tuesday...pork tenderloin and asian coleslaw salad from the "5 no fuss dinners" section of the new Southern Living magazine. She probably enjoyed this meal the most and ate about two whole slices of pork by herself. My little heart thrilled every time she opened her mouth and said, "more, more." She also ate a huge bowl of applesauce and some broccoli. :)

For breakfast, we've been alternating between organic rice check style cereal, frosted mini wheats, and oatmeal. I mourn the loss of eggs at breakfast time most keenly. I miss being able to love her through serving her pancake, waffles, and scrambled egg favorites.

I also found this "Green Goodness" smoothie at the grocery store that tastes like fruit juice (K and I tried it), but is loaded with iron-rich things such as: green tea, spinach, broccoli, barley grass, wheat grass, and jerusalem artichokes - whatever those are. We've been giving her this smoothie in her sippie cup during snack time and over the course of the week, she's finished the whole bottle. I feel a little more at ease with her drinking this smoothie because I know that even if she doesn't eat her iron-packed foods at dinner, she's had some access to what she needs to be healthy.

We're on a mission here to do the best we can by our girl. I'll try to update as often as I can on our progress and the ways we discover better how to love Meggie through food.

Oh, and these pictures were from this delightful afternoon. Meggie entertained herself for about an hour playing with stickers. I think I may have found her "reward" for potty-training one day. :) She was so focused that I couldn't even get her to look at the camera. Enjoy!

my sweetie girl

love her little frustrated face in this one - she couldn't "unstick" two of the stickers.

Monday, March 7, 2011

26 weeks pregnant...14 weeks or so to go...

Here we are at 26 weeks pregnant. Only 2 more until the third trimester and about 14 weeks left to go...Meggie came after her due date, so I'm guessing this baby girl will, too - maybe it's more like 16 weeks to go? :) Baby Girl is around the size of an English Hot House Cucumber, or 14 inches and 1.75 lbs. But, judging by Meggie's size, I would guess this baby is a little bigger than average.

How Far Along
: 26 weeks.

Total Weight Gain/Loss: I haven't weighed myself since my last doctor's visit, so I'm going to say still 22 lbs. Doubtful about this number - it's probably more seeing as my chocolate cravings are out of control.

Maternity Clothes: Everything maternity.

Gender: GIRL!

Movement: Lately, I've started to feel her little heel poking out in just about the same place as Meggie's used to do - right under my right ribcage. I think, based on where I feel her, that she's positioned similarly to how Meggie was - head down, but curved around my left side with her feet sticking straight out to the right.

Cravings: Chocolate. Totally. I even dragged out a frozen german chocolate cake from three months ago out of the freezer because I couldn't think of another place where chocolate could be hiding. It's bad. I'm waiting for the fruit cravings to kick in or something.

Symptoms: Strange dreams. Like last night I had this terrible nightmare that Kyle was a drug addict. In my dream, we were asleep in the bed with Baby Girl in between us and I kept feeling frightened that Kyle would roll over and smother her in his drug-induced state. After I woke up in a panic, I had to wake him up just to make sure it was really a dream. Poor Kyle.

Best Moment this week: Last night, her little heel was kicking so hard that Kyle could feel her more strongly than he's been able to so far. I loved watching his eyes get huge every time she jumped. We talked about how we still can't believe we're about to become parents of two.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

consignment sale season this picture doesn't have anything to do with the following post, but it's the winner of the 18-month shots I promised last time...

March hails spring consignment sale season in Oklahoma; consignment sale season makes me think about time and how, after four years in graduate school, I'm grateful for it.

When Kyle and I got married, I knew I was beginning graduate school in psychology...a change from my initial acceptance for creative writing, but a track to which I was dedicated, nonetheless. I knew creative writing would be easier - as in it was a program I could have finished during our time in Pensacola, it's a subject that has special meaning to me, and one which doesn't require the same amount of personal effort as, let's say, statistics and learning APA format for everything did for me. I knew that studying psychology would require more time, at least one transfer of schools, and tons more math than I had anticipated needing in undergrad. But, at that time in my life, I felt a calling to pursue counseling and despite the obvious challenges, I was determined to see the pursuit through.

At the same time, I felt an intense desire and yearning for children. In fact, the night Kyle and I got engaged, one of our first conversations went something like this:

"I can't wait to start our family! When do you think a good time would be?"
"I can't you think 2 years is too soon?" And, oh, how sweet that night was dreaming of the nearness of our future family.

When I decided to go into counseling, then, I knew (or so I thought. hehe. seeing as how Meggie came right around our "original" timeline) that finishing my grad degree would push back the beginning of our family. Though my mind was focused on my studies, my heart still ached for a child. My Meggie girl and new Baby Girl, though I didn't know them then.

I know this is a long-winded post about something to do with consignment sale-ing...but I promise I'm coming to my point. :)

Fast forward a couple years to living in Edmond and seeing close Navy friends with their babies talking with excitement about the big consignment sale in Oklahoma City. About the deals. About the clothes. About the books. To me, all that talk communicated one thing: this bi-yearly consignment sale adventure was one privilege of being a mother. It was one thing that mothers did...and one thing that wasn't mine to participate in as of yet. In other words, the timing wasn't right.

And then, an early December night brought news of change. To our amazement, we learned our precious Meggie Mae was coming...which meant among many more significant things that I would be a "mother" for the next March consignment sale. March, though, also means midterms for graduate students and work overload for me that year, trying as I was to get as much done before the baby's big arrival. I went consignment shopping with my Navy friends, but had to stop early because of class. I found myself wishing for more time. More time to shop, to prepare for my baby, to relish the thought of motherhood. More time to participate in those funny things that for some reason just make me feel like a "mom" - that feeling I get when I used to imagine what it might feel like to be a parent. A feeling that strikes at the oddest of when Meggie was a couple weeks old, a little fussy, and I took her out for a walk in her stroller. She fell asleep, lulled by her paci and the warm September sun, and I drank a Diet Coke as I wheeled her along, the whole time feeling like I had finally arrived in a joyous place of authenticity. For some reason, consignment sales do the same thing for me.

Now, this season of consignment sales is the first one in which I've just been Meggie girl's mama...not mama plus grad student, plus teacher, plus counselor-in-training. And I had the time to go when they first opened (in Edmond there were THREE this weekend), time to go back for 1/2 price, time to search for bargains. Time to relish this place in life. Time to enjoy one baby girl and the thought of another. I found myself grateful for time. Consignment sales. Motherhood. Time...see, they're all related. :)

These pictures capture only a little bit of the "haul" which included: summer outfits for the girls, three toys for Meggie (one outdoor scooter, $3 jumbo bag of mega blocks, and a baby doll stroller), a bedding set for New Baby Girl (who, poor thing, gets to share the guest bedroom until both girls can move into the "toddler girl room,") a shelf for the future toddler girl room, baby sling for New Baby Girl, three pairs of summer shoes for Meggie, and a couple puzzles. I am so proud of our finds, but especially proud of my trooper shopping partner - my 18 month old who doesn't take too kindly to her stroller any more for long periods of time - she did great with bribes of crackers and juice. :)

baby sling and shoes...or as Meggie says, "dooooo!"

a smocked dress and sleeper I couldn't resist for Baby Girl - all of our 0-3 month stuff from Meggie is gender neutral, so now that we know, I just HAD to buy some girly newborn clothes. :)

summer outfit for Meggie

Kyle's fav is the dress on the right...a Lily dress! can you believe I found it on sale??? It matches perfectly with Meggie's neon-green sandals for the summer (see above pic).

love this dress and its bows.

I'm a sucker for girlies in smocked dresses.

more romp-around-clothes

did I mention I love smocked dresses?

And, even though she's more of a "puzzle" girl... favorite consignment find for Meggie was this baby doll stroller. We'd noticed her playing with strollers anytime we visited a house with another girl. Best $5 purchase ever - she's been vrooming her baby doll around the house non-stop since we brought it home.

notice the placement of "Baby" - how precious that she's upside down...Meggie strapped her in all by herself.

"there you go, baby."

Oh, and as soon as we get the crib set up in the new guest bedroom/nursery, I'll post pictures of our consignment sale bedding. I'm excited about how old-fashioned, girly it looks. The main features are tiny pink rosebuds with pink and white striped accents and cream, eyelet lace on the edges. Perfect for our feminine one to come! :)

Until then, happy "sale-ing!"