Monday, February 28, 2011

A Letter to my 8 month old

My Dearest Meredith Laurel,
You continue to change before my very eyes and you continue to become more fun everyday. This month, in my eyes, you ceased to be my tiny baby girl and became what I refer to you as, "my grown up baby."

This month you became mobile. You have started crawling and exploring and going after what you want. You no longer sit idly playing with toys, but instead seek after whatever you can see and reach. These things tend to be on the dangerous side- radiators, electrical outlets, power cords and our tiny little space heater. We are child-proofing as best we can, but you will continue to keep us on our toes, I fear.

And as if crawling weren't enough, you have also learned to pull yourself up. You stand in your crib. You pull up on our coffee table and on your dresser. You even moved between two objects while standing yesterday. Stop that! Stop that behavior that resembles walking. You are my wittle bitty baby!

While those developments were so exciting and welcome, one thing that I could've done without this month was your nap strike. You didn't give up naps all together, but I'd say that more often than not, your naps were 20 minutes or less. The past few days have been better, so I have hope it was just a phase.

You are becoming so much more aware of yourself and of your surroundings. You notice our food and must have it. You chew on your toes and make sounds with your hands. You play with your tongue and perpetually scratch your head. If you drop something or I hide a dangerous object, you no longer simply forget it, but instead strain your head to find the missing thing.

This month was hard for your mommy. End of winter blues, less breaks due to nap strike, general loneliness and missing my own mommy. But at the end of every day I feel so grateful to be your mom. I can pick you up and you will wrap your little arms around my neck, suck my jaw (which I imagine is your version of a kiss) and even just for a few moments, everything feels so much better. Thank you, sweet girl, for being such a brightly shining star.

I love you to the moon and back,

Her 8th Month

My baby is 8 months old today! It was an eventful month for sure. Please enjoy this month's video

Her 8th Month from Claire Traganos on Vimeo.

Music: Strawberry Swing & Fix You by Coldplay

Sunday, February 27, 2011


I'm so excited for the Oscars tonight. Hubs and I are planning on watching them in bed with some warm buffalo chicken dip and brownie sundaes. The only thing that would make tonight better would be a fancy designer dress and a ticket for the red carpet itself. I am no movie aficionado, but I thought I'd share my picks anyway! This year we made a concerted effort to see most of the movies so I actually care about seeing both the dresses and who wins.

Best Picture:

Best Actor:
I loved Colin Firth in this movie. I also just love him in general. I would love him to win.

Though, I also LOVED Jeff Bridges. I'd be happy for either to win.

Best Supporting Actor:

I really can't decide between these two. 

Best Actress:

I didn't actually see this movie. I don't do thrillers so well, but I have a feeling she's got this one.

Best Supporting Actress:

I loved all the women in this category (except I didn't see Animal Kingdom) but I think Melissa Leo will rock this.  I'd also be super happy if Helena Bonham Carter won.

Melissa Leo, The Fighter 

What are your picks? Will you be watching tonight?

Thursday, February 24, 2011

oh my mama

you know when you are blog hopping and hours later you have found the most beautiful blog but have no idea how you got there? that was me last night as I found aura joon. She led me to a beautiful song that I just had to share with you.

Oh my Mama
She gave me these feathered breaths
Oh my Mama
She told me use your voice,
My little bird

She said sing sing sing sing sing sing melodies
And she sang sang sang sang sang sang melodies

Oh my Mama
She did give me fancy feet
I'll be dancing on
And I'll tap tap tap my toes
Into those creaking floorboards

Oh my Mama
She took my little hand and held on tight
Oh the Mamas
Give the waters of their wells
Oh the Mamas
Give the babies this very dirt we're walking on
Oh my Mama
She gave me these feathered breaths
And your Mama
She gave you those feathered breaths too

And when the sky drops all those feathers
And when the birds sing in the morning
I'll be a mama
I'll have a daughter
I'll be a mama
I'll have a daughter

And I'll give her melodies
I'll give her melodies

And she'll be
My little bird
And then she'll fly
She'll fly

I love this song for oh, so many reasons. I love the idea that mother-daughter, mother-daughter is a cyclic relationship. My mom has taught me so many things that I hope and pray and hope and pray that I can pass onto Meredith. And I hope and pray and hope and pray that Meredith will have things from her upbringing that she will want to share with her own daughter. 

My mom has taught me to fly. To be my own person. To be a friend. To be a wife. To be a mother. And while right now the thought of my little bird taking off on her own shatters me to tears, I know that one day her ability to do so will be make me proud.  

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

mom & sis

For the last year and a half, I've lived away from my mom. And unlike most situations (I would imagine) I'm not the one that moved away. All my life I've lived with or very near my parents. And then, in the summer of 2009, they moved far away to Texas. There are lots of things I hate about that. LOTS.

Last week, my hormones were a-ragin' and just about everything was making me cry. One simple statement from a friend that she had gone by her mom's house to pick up leftovers was enough to sink me into an afternoon depression. I wish my mom was close to enough to share leftovers with!

 And then this weekend as I was out on my own shopping I was missing my mom and sister again. As I drove towards the mall my mom was texting me pictures of shoes she was trying on. As I roamed my own mall hundreds of miles away, I was wishing for the guidance of my mom and sister. They would not have let me leave that mall empty handed.

As silly as it sounds, that is one of the things I miss the most. Girls to go shopping with. Girls with good taste who will tell me honestly what looks cute and what doesn't.  For example, my mom and sister would never have left me leave the house in this outfit, even if I was just a few weeks post-partum.

In a few weeks I get to go visit my parents and sister. I will enjoy the company. I will enjoy lazing on the couch. I will enjoy a homecooked meal made my someone else. I will enjoy the warmer weather. I will enjoy the slow pace of a small town. And hopefully, I will enjoy some shopping.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

a messy bun


I've told you about my struggle to have cute hair since having a baby. Things haven't really changed. I shower almost everyday, but still struggle to blow dry my hair.  Therefore, I'm often out and about with long, straggly hair. This messy bun would be a perfect solution! I'll be sure to try it this week and let you know how it turns out. 

Do you have any quick & easy hair styles to share? Please do!


idea from here. found here.

Friday, February 18, 2011

My yarn wreath!


Apparently I am the last person on the planet to hear of yarn wreaths, but fortunately, Mandy's post last week opened my eyes to this super fun craft. It took me the full week to grab enough time between saving my crawling baby from danger and trying to get her down for a nap during this week's nap strike, but I finally finished it yesterday. I'm really happy with how it turned out. I now want to hang a yarn wreath on every flat surface of my house. I might try to calm myself down and stick with seasonal ones for the front door. No promises.


I found these two tutorials to be most helpful:
The wreath:
The flowers:

Thursday, February 17, 2011

A Memorable Date


It was a Wednesday night. June 23rd. We felt like getting out, heading into town. So we drive around for a while trying to decide on where to eat. Chris checked the to see how long we'd have to wait for a table at several restaurants, while I stood, holding my belly and my hopes for a birth. We made our way (slowly) to one of our favorite restaurants and got a table on the patio right away.

P1060101 P1060100

I don't remember what I ordered, or even exactly what we talked about. I do remember looking at two girls about my age who were dressed adorably and fashionably and were sharing a glass of wine. Oh how I missed wine. I remember feeling heavy and swollen and about to burst, but also radiant and beautiful and so incredibly grateful for that large tummy. I remember sitting across from my husband and best friend knowing this would be our last fancy date night without a little babe waiting for us back home.

After dinner we wandered over to a little park where Chris laid down, head on my lap and I struggled to get comfortable.


Eventually dessert came up, as it always does with a pregnant woman. Chris (finally!) agreed to brave the North End for me so I could get the cannoli I had so been dreaming of. He dropped me at the curb, I "ran" it and got two chocolate chip cannolis.


We drove aimlessly, eventually deciding on our favorite view of Boston. We found a bench. While we sat we ate our delectables, watched an assortment of people, watching me, pass by and enjoyed a peaceful sunset.



It is a date I will always remember. We were so filled with excitement and anticipation. We were loving being a couple of two, but looking forward to being joined by our baby bird. And 5 days later we were.



Linking up with Writer's Workshop over at Mama Kat's.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: A Year Ago

a year ago we were soaking up the warmth of the sun in puerto rico with our best friends. my belly was experiencing its first true "popping." Mere days before our trip we had found out a little girl was on her way to us so we spent the trip a little more grounded in the reality of what was to come and relishing our last big trip as a family of two.


P1050668  P1050771




Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Summer craving


As I mentioned yesterday, the weather was beautiful and, except for today, the week is supposed to be in the high 40s and maybe even reach 50. At this point, that feels like a hot August afternoon. And as cliche as it is, this little peek at warmth has left me craving summer time and all that it brings. I am ready for greens and blues. I've had enough white and grey. How about you? Ready for warmer weather? Or wanting to hold onto winter cozies a bit longer?






Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day Valentine's Day, my dears. Hope today is treating you well. here in New England we are enjoying a genuinely gorgeous weather day. It's a glimpse at why people actually live here.

To celebrate the day, I'm listening to lots of lovey music. I thought I'd share. Proceed with caution, however, because I shamelessly love cheesy and makes no claims to be hip. If you share the same traits when it comes to music- Enjoy!

 photo: vintage us on valentine's day :)

   When You Say You Love Me      Josh Groban 
   Crazy Love      Ray Charles & Van Morrison       
   By Your Side       Sade    Lovers Rock    R&B/Soul          
   At Last (Single)       Etta James
    On a Night Like This       Dave Barnes  
    Love You Madly        Cake  
    Isn't She Lovely       Stevie Wonder 
    Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours     Stevie Wonder  
    Shower The People      James Taylor  
    Somewhere Out There - (An American Tail)    The Eden Symphony Orchestra    
    Cosmic Love        Florence + The Machine 
    When I Said I Do        Clint Black & Lisa Hartman Black   

   More Than Anyone       Gavin DeGraw   
   Fly Me to the Moon        Frank Sinatra
   How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You)       James Taylor
   Once Upon a Time... Storybook Love (The Princess Bride)       Mark Knopfler      
   The Prayer     Charlotte Church & Josh Groban
   Main Title (From "Rudy")     Jerry Goldsmith      
   "Gabriel's Oboe" from The Mission     Ennio Morricone, Roma Sinfonietta & Yo-Yo Ma                 
   Once Upon a Time... Storybook Love (The Princess Bride)      Mark Knopfler
    Fairytale      Enya     

The bottom set are from our wedding and so will always be special to me.

What is your favorite love song? Or a wedding song that is special to you?

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Steppin' Out: 2/12

Saturday afternoon we ventured out as a family to our favorite pizza place. We were going to bowl as well, but the wait was way too long. We had such a fun time hanging out as a little threesome and Meredith couldn't have been in a better mood. See?




Friday, February 11, 2011

Happy Friday

I woke up in a good mood this morning, feeling grateful and happy. Chris is home. Meredith and I are headed to a playdate in a little bit. Coffee is brewing. My baby is crawling. I'm listening to my instrumental labor mix (which I never listened to in labor, but brings me such peace). Meredith is dressed in purple corduroy overalls. I had a great time with great friends having great discussion last night.

And then there's this:






I hope you have as happy a day and weekend as this little peanut!

{in case that wasn't enough}

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Rookie Mom

It's Writer's Workshop day and today I'll be finishing this sentence:

You know you’re a rookie mom when you…

It was cool, crisp early December day. One of those days I needed to get out of the house for some fresh air. There was a new cafe that had opened in town and with the promise of delicious cupcakes, I set out on my way. The walk to the cafe was about a mile long. As soon as we arrived I placed my order (soup & a grilled cheese sandwich) and found a spot to sit. I took Meredith out of her Bundleme in the stroller to realize she needed a diaper change. I grabbed her diaper bag and headed to the bathroom only to realize there was no changing station. This was problem #1. I had no choice, but to lay down her changing pad on the bathroom floor (gag) and change her then and there. As you've probably guessed by now, this diaper wasn't simply wet and as I pulled it off I realized she had a bit of an explosion. This was problem #2.  But, no big deal, right? I reach in her diaper bag for a fresh diaper only to realize I am out of clean ones. Crap! Pun intended! While I'm was at it, I fished around for a fresh outfit only to realize I hadn't packed one. Crap! Problems #3 and #4.

At this point I'm squatting on the dirty floor of a public bathroom with a little poopy baby balanced precariously on her not-quite-big-enough changing pad. Convinced I couldn't possibly have forgotten both a diaper and an outfit, I kept digging around and uncovered... a feminine pad. Trying to be resourceful, I stuck the pad to her dirty white onsie, snapped her up and headed out of the bathroom.

Because I ordered soup, which wasn't easily transportable, I sat and scarfed down ate my lunch all the while feeling like such a rookie mom. Never had I felt like such an unprepared, newbie. Well, except for maybe the time I nursed a two week old baby standing up in a Nieman Marcus bathroom (what is it with me and the public bathrooms??), but that is another story for another day.

Mama's Losin' It