The Butterfly Pavillon

Emma spent most of a recent visit to the Butterfly Pavillon running and shouting, “I am going to get you butterflies!” Surprisingly, no one asked us to leave.  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA


Bumbo seat

We’ve been gathering up all of our baby stuff in preparation for our new baby girl. The Bumbo seat seems to be what makes Emma most curious. She initially assumed it was a baby potty. I promptly corrected that misconception. I did not want to find a little puddle of pee in the bottom of the pink chair. She’s carried the chair all over our house – sometimes she sits in it, sometimes her baby does. She’s used it as a step stool to reach things she shouldn’t. The real excitement came after realizing the Bumbo has a tray. One Saturday she plopped it in the middle of our kitchen and proceeded to demand I put blueberries on the tray for her to eat.


Picture practice

We had a cold snap in Denver a few weeks ago so Emma and I tried to get outside as much as possible before the chill hit. We adventured around the neighborhood – me with my camera and Emma ready to explore. Occasionally I would look up from adjusting my white balance to make sure Emma was not running in the street or climbing a neighbor’s fence. I am convinced I’ll be a superb wildlife photographer I can master taking pictures of Emma. Most of the time she sprints around faster than a cheetah.






Happy 6th birthday to Maya!

Matthew gave me a new camera for Christmas so you just might see some new posts. I’m tired of using my iPhone as my primary photo device. Mostly because the pictures don’t always look that great printed.

Maya turned six in the middle of December. I am pretty sure we sang happy birthday to her. I think I at least attempted to be slightly less aggravated with her when she stole food from Emma that day.

Here are a few pics of the old gal I took with my new camera.


gray maya Maya and frisfestive Maya

Peeing in the potty

When my mom was dying I told her the very hardest part about the whole crappy thing was that she wouldn’t know my kids. Ugh – thinking, saying or typing that fact will forever bring tears to my eyes and a lump to my throat. Anyway, her response through tears was, “sweetie, I’ll be there cheering you on through potty training, I’ll be there.” She knew what I had not quite accepted. She really is right here, all the time, a voice in my head, a little bird on my shoulder guiding me along the way.

If my mom was of this earth she would be here potty training Emma, that’s just who she was. We got our dog right before my mom came for a visit knowing she would get her house broken. She accomplished this in less than 10 days. She was the most maternal of mothers and I think she honestly loved these parental tasks that require immense care and attention. I don’t think I can quite say the same for myself. I spent one evening scouring the internets for every possible potty training piece of advice to make sure Emma was really ready. I discovered yes, Emma is ready and I need to stop looking for ways to put it off and buck-up.

I am basically following the Jan Goodner dog house-breaking method. This involves taking Emma to the bathroom constantly and a heck of a lot of cheering. Maya got a treat each time she went “whiz”.  Emma doesn’t seem to find the treats to be so important so I’ve bumped up an extra notch of woo hoo’s and you did it’s and I am so proud of you’s with a bunch of clapping and hi-fives.  I do love seeing the look on her face when she feels success. I also love the day I put the child adaptor on the toilet. Emma sat on it with an enormous grin across her face and kept reapeating, “happy, happy”!

We’re knee deep into this potty training thing. It’s turning out not to be nearly as daunting as I expected. We spend lots of time in the bathroom and possibly even more time talking about everyone we know who uses a potty. Does grandpa use a potty? Yes. Does grandma use a potty? Yes. Daddy? Yes. Mommy? Yes. Teacher? Yes. Neighbor Bob? You betcha.


Grow Cook Eat by Willi Galloway


I’ve been meaning to do a post on my friend Willi’s book Grow Cook Eat for a while. I was reminded of this need today when I opened my email and what did I find, but a lovely message from Anthropologie titled Books We Love: Urban Gardening. Second from the bottom in the image of seven stacked books is Grow Cook Eat! This is so awesome to me that I know the author of a book. It’s also especially awesome because it’s on a topic I love.

After we graduated from college, ten years ago (cough, cough), Willi interned at Organic Gardening magazine. She eventually moved from Pennsylvania, where the magazine is based, to Seattle and became the west coast editor. I remember hanging out at Willi’s apartment and venturing up to the rooftop deck where she planted pots with veggies. For some reason the memory that sticks out most for me are the CDs she had tied to sticks in the garden to deter birds from snacking on the fruits. Funny, I now also remember visiting Willi’s p-patch in Seattle and seeing yogurt cups implanted in the dirt filled will beer to attract slugs and keep them from munching on her plants. Seems she has quite a few pesticide free tricks for keeping the pests aways from her coveted veggie garden.

Willi also authors the blog Matthew and I have employed several of Willi’s garden ideas on DigginFood in our own garden. Her squash trellis is fabulous and I used her method of pre-sprouting pea seeds this spring.

Willi now lives in Portland and is currently touring for her book. She’s kinda like a rockstar – on tour. Her love of gardening is seriously infectious. Check out her book – it will make you more excited about gardening and give you some great ideas on how put all those veggies your growing to use in your kitchen and ultimately in your belly! Yum!

Today is Emma’s first day at school with out me

Uhhh, Lisa, it’s summer, why is Emma in school? Well you see, Emma and I have been joined at the hip (some might say literally) for the last two plus years. We get out lots, do fun things, see other people almost everyday but I feel like she’s ready to be in a school/kid fun setting all on her own – and it’s only on Wednesdays.

I had big plans for this time all to myself – running errands, cleaning the house, catching up on email, etc. So far today I went running and have spent the rest of the time obsessively checking my phone (I also have the ringer on high) to make sure Emma’s teacher hasn’t called to tell me she’s freaking out – come get her now!

Hmm…it seems I am the only one freaking out.

My dad would be so proud

There’s a good chance Emma will show the same dandelion picking and cartwheel turning prowess I had in the outfield during t-ball games.

Right now we are practicing hitting off a piece of PVC I hammered in the ground.


Houston, we have a problem.

Emma is a climber. If something appears be remotely climbable she’ll swing her little leg up and try to scale it. Matthew’s genetics can be blamed for all of her climbing desires. My family is one of the most risk averse you will ever meet, so trust me, my genes were not a contributing factor.

Because of her propensity to climb I have known this day was coming, regardless, I sigh a heavy “ugh”. Yes, Emma can climb out of her crib. Honestly, we’ve kept her in her crib without any sort of intervention much longer than I expected. Thank you, sleep sack.

Unfortunately/fortunately her manual dexterity has improved – she can unsnap her sleep sack and wiggle her way out through the head hole. The sheer joy of this accomplishment makes her jump around like a little bean.

Last night she managed to wedge her leg between the crib and wall. This led her to scream for help – “stuck”! After I assisted her out of her little predicament she commanded me to fill her humidifier, which was soaking in the bathroom to kill any germs related to excessive use after she was diagnosed with double ear infections and bronchitis last week. She also reminded me I did not give her the amoxicillin she was prescribed for those little infections.  While I ran around fulfilling her orders, she swung her little leg over the front rail of her crib. Apparently she was saddled up because she shouted “yee-haw” and spurred the rails like she does her rocking horse.

Kitten’s First Full Moon, Kevin Henkes

We checked out Kitten’s First Full Moon, by Kevin Henkes last time we went to the library. Emma loved the story and the pictures. I like the way it illustrates the difference between imagination and reality as a kitten tries to catch the moon thinking it’s a bowl of milk.