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A Month Away? Whoa. (warning: SUPER long post. Read at your own risk.)

September 23, 2012

Wowza—how has a whole (almost) month passed since my last post? Crazy!!

Almost as crazy as someone going from this:

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…to this:

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…in just five short months.  Where did my newborn go?!?

So, what have we been doing in the past month?  Well, I’ve been looking at my computer and saying, “You know, I really should get a blog post up.”  And then something happens—Lila starts fussing, or the dogs want out, or—Oh, look! It’s time to go teach!—and the blog post just never gets written.

Sorry about that.

Eh, sorry I’m not sorry.  I guess that’s more accurate.

Do you remember the posters for the movie, Friends With Kids? (btw, not as great as it looks, even though it stars two actors on my “If I saw them in a bar, I’d have to at least try to get them to make out with me—sorry, Ryan” list: Adam Scott and (of course) Jon Hamm.

Anyway, the poster:

This kind of reminds me of my life right now, except the three things would be work, life, and blogging.  I feel like before we had Lila, I had time for blogging AND teaching.  And I feel like if I weren’t teaching, I’d have time for life (ie, Lila and Ryan) AND blogging.  But, as of right now, I kind of feel like I only have time for two.  Obviously Ryan and Lila are going to make the cut.  And I figure since I’m being paid to teach, that kind of edges out blogging, you know?

The fact is, between teaching four classes this semester and doing all of the work (grading, meeting with students, etc.) that goes along with it, my free-time has taken a major hit.  And when I do have free-time, I’m more likely to spend it playing with Lila, cleaning the (perpetually dirty) house, trying to sneak in a nap, or doing something with Ryan.

It is what it is. 

And you know what I’ve learned?  Life doesn’t stop because the blog does.  If anything, cutting back (wayyyyy back) on my blogging time has allowed me to actually live my life in an easier way, if that makes sense.  I don’t have to always think about taking my camera with me, or spend time coming up with clever posts (not that I was ever really great at that anyway). 

But I’ve also found that, even if I don’t *have* to do those things—I still kind of like doing them. I love taking pictures of Lila, and I hope to keep blogging if only to share her progress and have the blog as a record of memories.  I also like blogging about our meals—I feel like it helps me to be more creative, and prompts me to think more about what we’re putting on our plates every day.

No conclusion to draw here, or promises about where the blog is going.

But—I will post some pictures of what we’ve been up to over the past month!

We took a labor day weekend trip to Tennessee along with my parents, and spent much of the weekend hiking.  Lila has really taken to the Bjorn, and did a great job on all of the hikes.  Even so, we’re starting to look into hiking backpacks—we’d love to go on some longer hikes with her, and the Bjorn gets pretty heavy pretty quickly.

Little Hiker:

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She has also mastered the art of sleeping in the bjorn, so most of our hikes ended like this:

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She was even a trooper when the hikes ended in a rainstorm:

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Tough little baby!

The next weekend, we traveled back up to see them again, and took a day-trip to Chattanooga, where we visited their acclaimed aquarium:

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It didn’t disappoint!

It was a rainy day—perfect for the aquarium.  And by the time we were done perusing fish-life, the rain had cleared and we were able to take a nice long walk around Chattanooga—such a fun town!

But the most fun part of my parents’ visit was watching Lila spend time with them.  She’s no longer a tiny newborn “blob”—she laughs, and plays, and is getting so interactive—and so it’s extra fun to watch her interact with the people we love the most!

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We loved getting to spend so much time with my parents.  Lila changes from day-to-day and week-to-week so much, so it was nice to spend a large chunk of time with them.  Lila warmed up really quickly, and was doing yoga stretches with Coo Coo after a few days together:

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Other things?  Oh, we adopted a cat:

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Don’t. Ask. Not all of us are happy about it:

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And honestly, we’ve just been working.  And grading.  A LOT.  I’ve never been one of those people who claims to be “SO BUSY!!!!” all of the time, but now, for the first time in my life, I really DO feel like we’re SO BUSY.  Busy teaching.  Busy grading.  Busy prepping.  Just…busy.

I think we’ll both be glad when December rolls around and winter break comes.  Is it too early to start thinking about that?!

We’ve been cooking good meals.  I DID make a few more recipes from Bon Appetit, including these Asian chicken sausage meatballs that were AWESOME:

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So. Good.

Most of all, we’ve just been taking the time to enjoy Lila as she grows and changes every day.  I’m really, honestly glad that I decided to take the lecturer position at our university—I really do like teaching, and working, and I think it was the right choice.  And it means that when I come home in the afternoons and see this sweet face:

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…it just melts my heart.  I love cuddling up to her in the afternoons after I come home from teaching.

She’s becoming such a big girl, trying to crawl:

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…and turning into a real…well, person.  It’s so interesting to see different aspects of personality emerging already.  You know, when she was about a month or two old, I thought she was a serious baby, but man was I wrong:

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She’s a little goofball!  It’s my favorite thing in the world to make her smile, or hear her erupt into belly laughs, and it doesn’t take much.

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But the early morning snuggles are still my favorite:

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…and I know these moments will be gone in a blink.  Here’s to trying to preserve them a little more carefully.

16 Comments leave one →
  1. September 23, 2012 5:05 pm

    Welcome back! Glad that you’ve been living your life and just doing it and not worrying about blogging about it. You look radiant and happy and carefree in these pics…whatever you’re doing is agreeing with you! And Lila is just as adorable as ever!

  2. September 23, 2012 6:04 pm

    LOVE THIS POST!! Such great pictures of that sweet girl! It looks like she’s sitting up, from those first pictures. Yes? We had such a great time in Tennessee, too. We must do that more often!

  3. September 23, 2012 10:05 pm

    It is definitely tough to balance everything. I just blog when I can and feel like it and that works best! No pressures. LOVE all of the pictures. She is so darn cute. Getting so big!! Her eyes are just awesome

  4. September 24, 2012 2:03 am

    Wow! I can’t believe how much she has grown!! Blogging is 100% for you — you should do, or not do, what you have time and the desire to do 🙂 I love keeping up with you, selfishly…but I totally get it 🙂

  5. Patti permalink
    September 24, 2012 2:37 am

    There are so many great pictures of Lila in this blog. I will get some copies printed for my gallery. How can you not put that precious girl as top priority?

  6. September 24, 2012 11:41 am

    She seriously is beautiful, just like you (and .. your beautiful hubby. Yes, he’s gorgeous too!!). Anyway, I’m done with that, great blog post, we completely understand if you put your family first, and your PAID job. I had to deal with this same issue, and I understand how hard it is, I really do (it’s like, we don’t get jack for blogging, yet it’s so addicting and fun and a great “Escape”). I look forward to the “Every once in a while” post with great photos and one-liners (you are, in fact, hilarious).

  7. Kristi permalink
    September 24, 2012 5:12 pm

    Thanks for sharing the pics of Lila. So precious.

  8. September 25, 2012 1:18 pm

    Adorable pics and looks like life has been packed with precious moments, totally understand! 🙂

  9. September 25, 2012 1:22 pm

    She’s just such a doll! And life is way more important than blogging about it. Enjoy the moments with that precious baby!

  10. September 26, 2012 1:32 pm

    Oh how I miss those days! She really does remind me so much of Max as a baby. Trust me, it’s a lot of work, but man it is so worth it! Jay was so easy and still is (thank god!). Max is not so easy, but he such an amazing person and highly entertaining! Getting to know your kids…well, there is really nothing else like it! I’m so glad you are enjoying life and not stressing about the small stuff. I have no idea how people have little kids and blog regularly. I still can’t find the time to blog everyday and my kids don’t need me all the time. Work has taken over somewhat for me too, so I can’t really complain about that.

    I, seriously, would love to meet up and go hiking some time! We should plan a day trip!

    As for that movie…we just watched it last night. It was ok, but thankfully not what my life is like with kids and my husband. If I would have seen that before having kids, it would have scared the hell out of me!

    • September 26, 2012 10:08 pm

      Hahaha…we saw the movie when I was about 35 weeks pregnant…I remember thinking, “Shiiiiiiiiiiiit.” 🙂

      Yes!! Day hike meet-up! We would love it!

  11. September 27, 2012 1:02 am

    So freaking adorable, I can’t stand it!!!! I also can’t believe she’s 5 months, it really goes so fast, one day you’ll wake up and she’ll be 10. I had a total freak out yesterday on my oldest’s 10th birthday.

  12. September 27, 2012 6:35 pm

    She’s such a beautiful baby! I don’t have kids yet, but I think taking a blog break to enjoy life is more than warranted, there’s only so much we can balance

  13. September 28, 2012 2:45 pm

    OMG love her huge eyes! And all that hair, she’s beautiful! Looks like you’re having a blast. I definitely agree, life is for living… and if you can’t fit in the blog, oh well!

  14. October 4, 2012 11:17 am

    Lila has grown so much! Thanks for the update, I loved looking at all of these pictures.

  15. October 4, 2012 7:12 pm

    I love this post. I recently took a “blog reduction” and I feel similarly to you…I still like doing all of those things (blogging, cooking, photographing my meals, trying new products) but life is easier if I’m not always thinking about my next post, when I’ll have time to write, what it will be about, how I can find time to create a new recipe when really I just want to eat the same thing over and over…

    Love the pictures. Glad you are enjoying your new family. 🙂

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