March 28, 2013

playtime with pearl

Pearl is the type of kid that is happy playing with just about anything.

Long-sleeved shirt: Circo (gift)
Long-sleeved onesie: Gerber ($8.00 for pack of three)
Leggings: Cherokee (gift)
Socks: Old Navy ($6.00 for pack of eight)
She's been playing with her brother's toys since birth, so she hardly bats an eye when her big brother suddenly decides he wants what she has and "trades" with her.
So, for her birthday, it was fun to pick out some toys just for her.
Things that we thought she would really enjoy.

I think we did a pretty good job.

Now we just need to impress upon Malcolm that he just can't "trade" his sister for these new things!

March 27, 2013

pearl: twelve months

(I know I've missed her actual birthday by over a week, but I wanted the "official" measurements from her one year well check to wrap up these posts)

This past year has flown on by ... 

And yet it feels as if an eternity has passed when I go back and look at the very first monthly post about my baby girl.

She has changed so much in such a short amount of time, and is really growing into a spunky little girl before my very eyes.

These photos of her (on her actual birthday) enjoying her "Birthday Blizzard" from her aunt (my sister) make it so extremely evident.

Height: 29 inches
Weight: 8 pounds 5 ounces
Before long, this little lady will have left babyhood behind her ...  But with each new milestone, come new adventures, so I think I can handle it!
*Check out Pearl's eleventh month here.

March 25, 2013

officially official

Someone added the "sold" to our yard sign at the end of last week ...

I guess this means it's really happening!

March 21, 2013

first birthday portraits

I'm a bit of a "professional photo" junkie. 

Although I take tons (and tons!) of photos on my own, and they aren't half bad, I feel the need to "document" various points in time with professional shots, too.

So, for Pearl's first birthday, she and I made a trip to the old portrait studio ...

Shirt: Genuine Kids (thrifted for $1.00)
Jeans: Old Navy (thrifted for $0.50)
Shoes: Keds (thrifted for $1.50)
She was cooperative, yet oh-so-serious the entire time ...

And, of course, I left spending entirely too much money anyway!
At least I won't feel the need to return until she turns one and a half ...  That gives me six months to start saving up for next time!

March 18, 2013

birthday mode

Our house is a mess (I hold "moving" fully responsible), and among the boxes (and boxes!) of things packed and ready to go are Pearl's birthday decorations and favors ...

Less than a week until her first birthday celebration!

I hope they don't get lost in the shuffle before then ...

March 15, 2013

for my pearl

My dearest Pearl Agnes,

Today is your first birthday ... 

Can it really be that a whole year has passed us already?

It seems like, just yesterday, I was waddling around the house, lamenting that none of my clothes fit, and dreaming of the second son I'd soon get to meet.

Yes, it is true.

I was nearly one hundred percent confident that you were going to be a little boy from the moment I knew you were in there.  Everything about your pregnancy was identical to my pregnancy with Malcolm (from the way I was "carrying" right down to the exact same salty cravings) ... So it made sense I'd be getting a little boy at the end.

Oh boy (pun intended), what a surprise it was to have you placed on my chest with the jubilant announcement "it's a little girl!"

And, in all honesty, looking back on our first year together, I've never been happier to be wrong in all my life.

Despite my (intial and unwarranted) negative feelings about having a daughter, you have blown my expectations out of the water. 

You are definitely different from your brother (and not just because you have girl parts) in the most amazing ways ...

You are so spunky.  You get into more than he ever did at this age, and you do so with such determination and sneakiness.  One minute, you are quietly playing with something on the floor and, the next (as soon as I turn away), you are happily destroying a shelf full of books and knocking them, one by one, to the ground.

You are loud.  You are so much more vocal than Malcolm ever was at this age.  You mimic our sounds, and constantly make your presence known.  You shriek and coo and laugh and you seem so close to uttering real words in your sweet and tiny voice.

You are smart.  (Not that Malcolm wasn't, but) you already know how to get what you want ... Whether it is with crocodile tears or by acting adorable!

We are in so much trouble.

But we are so in love!

This past year has been a fun ride already, and I can't wait to watch you grow and change over the coming years ... 

You are the daughter that I wasn't expecting, but you are exactly what I wanted.

I love you so much, my little gem.

Love always,

March 14, 2013

happy and bright

It's been one of those weeks around here.

The spring session of the Ohio Graduation Tests has descended upon me and left little time for anything "fun" on this end ...

Yet, in the moments when I am home and in the presence of this little (almost one-year-old!) girl, my mood is lifted and I remember why I do what I do every day.

Shirt: Circo (thrifted for $0.50)
Long-sleeved onesie: Cherokee (thrifted for $0.50)
Pants: Old Navy ($11.00)
Socks: The Children's Place (pack of six for $2.00)

I can't wait to celebrate her (and all the milestones of her first year) with family and friends next weekend!

March 13, 2013

the apple (part two)

I posted something very similar for Malcolm the week that he turned one, so I thought it might be fun to try it again for my little girl ...

(Is she turning one already?!)

The old saying "the apple doesn't fall far from the tree" has always rang true to me, yet I never realized just how true it was until I had children of my own.

All day long, I see myself and my husband reflected back in our daughter ...

In her many goofy expressions (especially her "stinker face").

In her crooked (yet still mostly-toothless) smile.

In so many of her little mannerisms.

In the sound of her laughter and tiny voice.

In her love of naptime and a good night's sleep.

In her inquisitive personality and tendency to be mischivous when no one's looking.

In her hearty appetite for foods of all kinds (and the ability to pack them away in the blink of an eye).

And, not to mention, all the various physical features!

Yes, Pearl is definitely our (second) little apple ... 

We are two for two in the fruit-producing department!

March 7, 2013

ready for spring

All of the weather outlets were calling for snow and nasty weather on Wednesday, but the Cleveland area didn't get a single flake and it was blue skied and sunny all day ...

It definitely got us thinking of warmer temperatures, and dressing a bit "lighter."

Tee-shirt dress: Circo (thrifted for $1.00)
Long-sleeved onesie: Gerber (pack of three for $8.00)
Leggings: Old Navy (gift)
Socks: Old Navy (pack of eight for $6.00)

Can it be that spring is (really) on the horizon?

March 6, 2013

third time's the charm

So, as I mentioned in another post, our house was (back) on the market for the third time beginning in the middle of January.

It wasn't anything different.

It didn't feel special.

Just the same old song and dance.

A flurry of getting the house "ready" ...  Cleaning and decluttering so that the realtor could take photos, and so things would look nice if anyone wanted to take a closer look.

Debating on a new low, low listing price that wouldn't bankrupt us in the process (should someone actually be interested this time).

And then, of course, just sitting back and waiting.

And wondering.

And imagining, "What if?"

What if this was the time? 

And, after about one month of showings (averaging about one per week, not too shabby in Cleveland's depressed real estate market!), we got a nibble.

Someone made an offer.

And we accepted!

And, things still seem to be progressing in the right direction.

No news is good news, as they say. 

Third time's the charm!

So, here we sit, busy going through closets and loading boxes and trying to prepare ourselves (practically and mentally) for the April 10th closing date.

We're still figuring out the "new house" stuff on this end, but it is a good feeling.

Knowing that, after two years of the same old song and dance, the third try has yielded some results.

That our family will be moving on.

Our family will be moving!