Tuesday, September 25, 2007


Aunt Emily brought Caroline these very fancy shoes from Morocco. Caroline loves them! They are very sparkly and, most importantly, they slip on. It took her a while to get the coordination right, but now she slides them on with no problems at all! She's so proud of herself and can hardly take her eyes off of her feet. One of my favorite things is that she puts them on, grabs a purse, and says, "BYE!" Thanks, Auntie Em! The shoes are a hit!

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Thursday, September 20, 2007

A lesson

OK - so maybe Caroline has inherited more from us than our love of books. I think she's also very talented musically! Check out her posture. I'm impressed. I know my posture isn't that good!

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Tuesday, September 18, 2007


We really aren't surprised that Caroline has inherited her parents' love of books. She loves to read. She loves looking at books by herself and "reading" the parts she knows. I am looking forward to hearing her read to me someday. And I can't wait to read some of the classics with her - The Hobbit, The Secret Garden, Stewart Little, The Wind in the Willows...

Reading to bunny

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Thursday, September 13, 2007

A new blanky

I got a neat little sewing book called Bend the Rules Sewing and it had a pattern for this simple lap quilt. I think I did pretty good, considering it was first attempt at quilting. So now I'm wondering if this has whetted my appetite for quilting? Or squelched it? I'm not sure... Caroline likes it - and that's what's really important!

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Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Richmond and vacation's end

This is the last post about our vacation and the end of the pictures... Hope it hasn't been too boring for you!

(Julie took these pictures - I am in awe of her photography skills!)

September 1, Day 8 - We all woke up to unbelievably nice weather in Richmond! We drove down to the James River and walked along some nature trails there. The river is beautiful and so accessible - people were sunbathing on rocks and swimming. It was really nice. We ate lunch at a local pizza place. The girls took naps while the guys vegged out on college football. When we woke up, we took Caroline to the park to slide and swing and run around a bit. Andy and Julie live in a great community. It has pools and parks and running trails and all kinds of amenities that I can only dream of here in midtown! The girls ran to the grocery store for dinner supplies. We had barbeque chicken while watching some football. Then we headed back out to the community center for a fireworks display. Wow! We certainly got 5-star treatment at the Melton's!

September 2, Day 9 (vacation's end) - We said goodbye to our friends this morning. It was only a little sad: they are coming to Memphis in a few weeks, so we'll see them soon. We got on the road back to DC. Kevin saw Caroline and me safely through security at the airport and then headed his way west in the truck. The plane was nearly empty and we had 3 seats to ourselves. Other than Caroline's displeasure at having to sit in Mommy's lap during take-off and landing, it was a good flight. My friend Ellen was waiting for us at the airport. It was good to get home and even better to take a nap while Caroline took hers. Now we wait for Kevin to come home tomorrow! The laundry marathon begins... It was a great vacation - one we'll always cherish.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

DC to Virginia Beach (Days 5-7)

August 29, Day 5 - We decided that we should pay homage to President Lincoln this morning. We climbed the stairs to his monument and read some of his words. I was particularly struck by a sentence from the Gettysburg Address: "The world will little note nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here." We remember what was both done and said there! We said fair well to DC and headed down to Virginia Beach. First order of business - find good seafood. And we did. Caroline loved her fried shrimp again. We ate at the Lynnhaven Fish House. We walked a bit on the boardwalk and then called it an early night.

August 30, Day 6 - Time for the beach! After a dosing up with sunscreen and packing a lunch, we headed for the beach. Caroline was hesitant in the sand at first, but once we showed her how to dig and sift and rake, she was grabbing handfuls of sand and saying, "Whee!!!" She loved the waves, too. After every one hit us, she would say, "More! More!" Her giggles in our ears was such a sweet sound. We must have played in the surf for an hour - Caroline running back and forth between the two of us. We also saw some dolphins playing out beyond the swimming area. How neat! We played and played and Caroline was cranky and worn out by the time we headed back to the hotel. We let Caroline take a little nap while we enjoyed watching some more dolphins from our balcony. We headed for a local restaurant, Tautog's, for some excellent seafood. We took a walk on one of the fishing piers. On the way back, we splashed in the surf, getting sufficiently sandy again. Kevin and I admired our sunburned spots and contemplated Caroline's nice tan. (We did reapply her sunscreen but not our own.) Where did she get that complexion? If she's a sungoddess, it's not from one of us! Pooped out from a hard day of fun, Caroline asked to go to bed and we heard no fussing after we laid her down. Wow.

August 31, Day 7 - Another quick trip to the beach was in order this morning before we headed to Richmond. The tide was coming in and the current and waves were strong! We didn't have to get very far out to be pummeled with waves. We had no shade: the wind kept picking up our umbrella. I have no idea where our sand anchor is... We were amazed that after about 2 hours, Caroline kept saying, "Go. Go." We asked if she wanted to dig. "No." Did she want to swim? "No." Did she want to go back to the hotel? "'Kay." Since that's all the time we had to spend, we were okay with taking a cue from our girl. Caroline napped on our way to Williamsburg, where we stopped at an outlet mall. I got some things for Caroline to wear this fall and a couple of things for myself, too. Even Kevin found a pair of shoes that suited him! Getting back in the car was not on Caroline's agenda and she cried most of the way to Richmond. It was definitely the "low" in our vacation! But she was all smiles and giggles when we arrived at Julie and Andy's house in Richmond. It was so good to see our dear friends again. There was much to catch up on: Julie is newly pregnant and Andy just finished his second Iron Man. We were their first "non family" overnight visitors! We had some of Andy's fantastic venison burgers for dinner and enjoyed each other's company before going to bed.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

DC - Day 4

August 28, Day 4 - We got in the car this morning and went to Arlington Cemetery, where we took in JFK's grave and the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Caroline was respectful, which pleased us so much! Arlington is such a solemn place. It really reminded me that those who serve and protect our country give a magnificent gift to all of us. We headed over to Great Falls to see the Potomac in a more natural setting. It was fantastic and beautiful! We needed a bit of nature. We headed back to town and took in the National Cathedral. Caroline was a bit tired and cranky at this point, so we did an abbreviated "self-tour". The cathedral is just breath-taking. We took Caroline to the children's chapel, where everything was just her size. There was the cutest little pump organ there. It was in terrible shape, though. Caroline really wanted to play it (so did Mama!)! When we exited the cathedral, we took a leisurely stroll through the Bishop's Gardens. Wow! The plants and flowers and herbs there were almost as beautiful as the cathedral! God certainly does some amazing things in gardens. We then took the bus to Georgetown and had dinner at Clyde's. We window shopped in Georgetown and then headed back to the car. We stopped at the Cheesecake Factory to satisfy our late-night sweet teeth (for after a little one's bed time) and then called it a day.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

DC - Day 3

August 27, Day 3 - We woke up early, had breakfast together, hopped in the car and headed to the Baltimore Inner Harbor. We went to the National Aquarium. We were thrilled that Caroline loved the dolphin show. She was mesmerized. We saw lots of fish and some frogs and birds, too. I have to admit that the highlight of the trip for Caroline was the gift shop. Do they put everything soft and cuddly down on toddler level on purpose? She went nuts! Every time we turned around, she had a new "friend". We settled on an adorable plush seal that has been her constant companion ever since. We ate lunch at Phillip's Seafood - crabcakes for Kevin and me and fried shrimp for Caroline. She loved them! We walked around in the harbor area. It was such a lovely day. We came back into town for a rest period and to freshen up for dinner. We met our college friend Russ and his girlfriend Adna at the Old Ebbitt Grill for a great dinner. Caroline had a good time coloring with Adna. Great idea for moms - they served a finger food platter on the children's menu, which consisted of peanut butter, celery sticks, carrots, apple wedges, and string cheese. She loved it! We had the crabcakes (yes, again!). How could we resist when the waiter said they were the best in the area? He didn't lie. They were delicious! The company was the best part of dinner. We miss Russ and it was great to get to know Adna better. We viewed the White House at night and then headed back to the apartment.

Monday, September 03, 2007

DC - Day 2

August 26, Day 2 - We all woke up feeling refreshed and ready for more adventures. The morning was slightly overcast and relatively cool at 74 degrees. We decided it was the perfect opportunity to take in some monuments. We walked past the Washington Monument, but decided not to venture to the top. We went to the World War II memorial, which was the nicest memorial I've ever visited. It was so inspiring and lovely. My grandfather was a POW, captured on Wake Island, so the memorial holds special meaning for me. It was so wonderful to see such an emphasis on our country. We visited the information center where there were computers set up to view honorariums/memorials written for the WWII veterans. What he did for our country amazes me. God certainly has His hand on my grandfather's life. We trekked over to the Tidal Basin and picked up a paddle boat. We paddled over to the Jefferson Memorial. Caroline did not enjoy the boat ride as much as we had hoped, so we cut that excursion a bit short. We walked past the White House and took the obligatory photo. We were desperate for some lunch, but all the restaurants in the business district were closed because it was Sunday! Argh! We walked back to the apartment for a bite to eat and everyone wound up taking a short siesta. We took a bus over to the mall in the afternoon. We stopped at the National Archives, with which Caroline was not impressed. We were, though. We headed over to the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History and Caroline had a large time. She especially loved the mammals exhibit and we loved watching her explore. It was truly exciting and wonderful to hear her exclamations and see her expressions. Toddlerhood is certainly a time of magnificent discovery and we felt very blessed to be able to see just a bit of the world through her eyes. We popped in to Gordon Biersch for dinner on our way back to the apartment. We all played and giggled on the bed before bedtime. Caroline was pooped and so happy that bedtime came and we didn't hear a peep out of her.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

We're back!

So, we've been on a little vacation this last week in August.

Kevin spent the month of August in Washington, DC, studying at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology at Walter Reed. It was a great learning experience for him and he had a wonderful time (despite missing his two best girls). I was glad that he had this opportunity through his residency program. We missed him and are happy to have him home again!

Caroline and I traveled up to DC after his courses were finished. We spent a few days in DC, a couple at Virginia Beach, and a couple more in Richmond visiting close friends.

Ready for all the photos? I kept a running journal of our days there, so I'll just do the pictures a day at a time. I really should have taken more pictures (as usual!). Here are the photos and commentary from our arrival and first day. I've put in some links to some of the things we did - for your future reference and ours!

August 24, Arrival - Bryn and Elizabeth took Caroline and me to the airport. The girls were totally enamored with each other in the back seat. Plans for a road trip were tentatively made! Caroline had a large time pushing her stroller and waving at the airplane crews on the tarmac while we waited to board. Right before takeoff, Caroline fell asleep in my lap - so sweet! I was kind of surprised that she took a little nap. When she woke up, we shared a Pepsi, played with some new and special toys, and passed the time quite nicely. For her first airplane trip, she did very well. Kevin (Dada) was waiting for us at the airport. Caroline started squealing when she saw him. We were so happy to be reunited! We had dinner at a Chili's and then moved in to Kevin's very nice apartment. He had a great location and it felt like we had the whole building to ourselves. It was quiet and I think I could count the number of people we saw during the week in the building on one hand. I love that Kevin had cleaned and shopped and prepared for our arrival. Caroline's "habitat" (pack 'n' play) was already set up, as was her highchair. Caroline had a hoodie towel and some of her favorite snacks waiting for her, too. Those little things meant so much to me. I have a really great husband.

August 25, Day 1 - We went to the National Zoo first thing this morning. What started out as a not-so-hot morning quickly turned into an almost unbearably humid midday. Caroline loved all the animals, but especially liked the birds. After hitting the main attractions (elephants, tigers, lions, etc.), we headed back to the apartment for a bite of lunch. Caroline refused her afternoon nap, but played quietly in her habitat for about an hour. We visited the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum in the afternoon. It was disappointingly busy, but we were able to find some quiet exhibits. Some of the treasures from the American History Museum were on display, so we were able to see Kermit the Frog and Dorothy's ruby slippers and Jerry Seinfeld's puffy shirt. Caroline specifically liked Kermit and the first Teddy Bear. On our way back to the apartment, we stopped at "Five Guys" for some delicious hamburgers and fries. Apparently, Five Guys is a chain east of here and are famous for their hamburgers - think Steak 'N' Shake, but better! Those were delicious burgers!!! We ended the day with baths and feet rubs for everyone.