Wednesday, May 26, 2010


Sometimes I sit and watch it happening, and I don't even care. No, more that that even. I'll sit there and think, "How adorable, the two of them working on a little project together! No imminent threat of stitches or concussion or fingers getting squished in a cabinet door. And no yelling. Ah yes, no whining or fussing or wailing. No loud noises at all. This is a happy, happy moment."

Another happy moment was taking the kids to the pool on Tuesday for the first time. Look at The Fiery One all suited up and with a little snork to top it off!

I'd been intimidated by the thought of watching 2 wee non-swimmers at the pool at the same time, but we had such fun! Andrew was inspired by Marjorie Stewart-Baxter (who can swim) and was leaping off the side into deep water with his little water wings before I knew it. Els desperately wanted me to just let her go to it and was very put out that I insisted upon holding her. I'm hoping she'll take a liking to her float soon so I don't have to alligator wrestle the whole time. Funny thing: When I got home, I was rinsing out their bathing suits and saw that Andrew's is size 24 months and Elsbeth's is 3T. What in the world?

In appliance news, The Precious decided recently that it was time our Nibblet was educated in the ways of front-loading washers. He was excitedly telling her all about it (or, in truth, telling me to tell her ... "Mommy, tell Elsbeth this is where the water comes out," etc.). The two of them stood watching the clothes wash for some time before Nib decided she had some other things to check on. Andrew was distraught that she was going to miss the spin cycle. Seriously.

A few Saturdays ago we scooted out of town to Southern Belle Farms to pick strawberries. (Same farm we went in the fall to select a pumpkin and do the corn maze and take a hay ride - love this place!)


TFO was annoyed that she was strapped to my back during the actual picking instead of digging around in the plants herself. She punished me by occasionally getting a fist full of my hair and pulling it with all her surprisingly powerful might. Then she'd arch her back and kick her legs and tell me a little more about what she thought of her confinement. But later I let her free-range in the grass and eat homemade strawberry ice cream and all was forgiven.

New Nibblet milestone: She's walking! She took her first step a couple weeks ago, and then did a whopping 8 steps by herself yesterday! She still prefers to hold on to my finger, but I don't think it will be long before she's careening wildly about the house.

And finally, in house news, we're moving in a just a couple weeks a big 3 miles away to a 100-year-old Victorian that I'm madly in love with. I can't believe it! It's my dream house. And it has 4 sets of stairs and a deep koi pond that just might give me a stroke. Everyone go now and buy up stock in baby gates and pond security netting.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Thursday, May 6, 2010

A Little Sea Bathing Would Set Me Up Forever

Swallow study accomplished! Elsbeth left Egleston this afternoon sporting barium in her eyebrows, feeling disgruntled, but with an 'A' in swallowing. And I got to see a gentleman strolling proudly through the hospital wearing the most terrifying hair piece ever created, which pretty much made the whole outing worth it for me.

The speech therapist (Laura) who conducted the study felt very good about how all her swallowing parts worked and concluded that she is very sensitive to texture. It was wonderful to hear that her throat flappy bits are protecting her air tube as they should (yes, I have a degree in speech therapy) and that if (when) she gets choked up on food she should be able to clear it on her own with out the 911 people. Laura suggested I just press on with foods, helping her to learn the new textures, and that she should catch up with her contemporaries (who are snarfing chicken nuggets, quesadillas and apple wedges).

I kind of wish she had done one of her gurgley chokes where she can only whimper because she doesn't have enough air to cry. I described these more than once, and though I'm sure Laura believed me, it would be comforting to me to know she's witnessed it and still unconcerned. The only thing she actually did see what a bit of a cough/gag, which, though I don't like it when she does that either, isn't the reason I decided to do a whole big children's hospital event.

Ultimately still good news which we celebrated with french fries at McD's with friends. In my newly emboldened state, I gave The Fiery One her very own french fry.

She proceeded to stick the whole thing in her mouth, and at once my boldness dissipated. I snatched it out, then went back to pinching little bits of it off for her. Then she got choked up on some small pieces of soft green bean, but she got through it without any back beating. Baby steps.

Andrew and Marjorie Stewart-Baxter shared a booth and a couple of Happy Meals and neither of them choked on a thing.

Monday, May 3, 2010


A couple weeks ago we were invited to Aunt Sallie and Uncle David's awesome new house to celebrate all the Mobley spring birthdays. As punishment for surviving another year, we made them all line up in party hats and asked them to smile while we took a zillion snapshots.

Elsbeth serenaded us with brain-melting shrieks on the drive to Greenville, but once there she decided life was pretty fantastic. She and Cousin Anna-Kate crawled circles around each other and battled to see who could retain possession of the most cat toys. I'm trying not to have my feelings hurt that she smashed the monkey cake I made for her to smithereens and threw it on the ground, but was quite interested in her cupcake here at the party. It's wise to creep snoot first into unfamiliar foods.

She was delighted to receive her very first doll, a sweet Raggedy Ann that she grabbed and kissed.

Somebody decided to let Uncle David out of the attic even though his medication had clearly worn off.

And Scary Uncle Jeff was permitted to mingle once we disarmed him. The children knew to keep their distance, but sadly a neighbor's cat has been missing ever since.

Andrew thought the whole thing was spectacular and didn't seem to mind that none of the presents were for him. (Granted, Nannie had a whole sack of goodies for him upon his arrival and we let him "help" Elsbeth open her gifts, most of which he unceremoniously pitched to the side once out of the wrapping.) Time being doted upon by loving aunts, uncles and grandparents feeds a little one's soul.

Andrew also got his own private magic show by a much adored family friend. I think Sir Raul was biting a quarter in half here.

The weather was unbelievable so we all spent hours in the gorgeous yard running, playing badminton, laying on blankets, throwing footballs, etc. Thank you so much Crazies Uncle David and Aunt Sallie for all the wonderful memories!

Back at home we're trying to muddle along after such party fun followed by days of getting to hang out with Nannie. Andrew continues to enjoy his gymnastics class ...

... and now we've added some swim lessons to the mix! And as a special bonus, he's getting take these lessons with his dear friend Eunice Chantilly! Aren't they so cute, waiting there to go into the pool?

Even though he's still very hesitant to get his face wet (which, from what I understand, is a critical piece of the learning-to-swim process), we're making great strides. He was wrapped around me like an octopus - total death grip - when we walked in the first day, but by the end of that class he was giddy about going back. He now willingly wears goggles (!), will jump off the wall to the teacher (after much negotiation about how close the teacher should stand), and is learning to float.

And Els keeps growing and growing. I'm going to shamelessly steal a nickname I saw on a blog I visited once years ago where the writer referred to her husband as "The Fiery One." Elsbeth is my Fiery One. She will be so happy, so very happy, giggling and laughing and grinning so you can see all her 7 teeth. Then something will happen - say, Mommy offers her water when she isn't in the mood for water - and she'll wither you with her glare and try to fling the offered sippy cup into the next room. I've been really working to get her to sign "please" when she wants more food, but she flatly refuses. She prefers to give me a stern look and bang on her tray. She is tied for the most adorable creature in the world and I simply love her to bits. I also collapse into a heap outside her bedroom door after I put her down for the night.

One item of prayer for my girl - she's scheduled for a swallow study at the Egleston Children's Hospital on Thursday morning. She chokes very easily on food - something that's been an issue since we brought her home, but that has gotten scarier now that we've (finally) entered the world of table foods. Several back-beating episodes had me calling our pediatrician who suggested we do the swallow study to see if there's an issue there. Anything that I can imagine fixing a swallowing issue sounds pretty yucky (surgery?), but I'm ready for meal times to be more relaxed.