We’re back from our Christmas visits and with us came a lot of great presents, fond memories, and one heck of a nasty virus. I am so evidently sick that we’ve had to alter our favorite diaper-changing game. When we were a one-Clara family, we used to decide who was on diaper duty with a simple round of rock-paper-scissors. Since having the second, the game evolved to rock-paper-scissors-baby, with “baby” and whoever was holding him trumping all. Now, it’s rock-paper-scissors-baby-worst cold of the season. Kids have a way of drying up your reservoirs of excess compassion, but we’ve managed to take some care of each other through these colds, and all I have to do is hack five minutes straight, and the children are bathed, diapered, pajamed, and I’m sipping a mug of hot water and honey.
We had a great time visiting family and have a lot of pictures to show for it. If all goes as planned, this should be the first blog of two or three showcasing our Christmas vacation.
Below in Illinois, Clara and Owen talk cousin-talk over some crackers and sippy cups.
Sophia gets some William lovin’, which is pretty much the running theme of this post—all the ways to love a baby.
Here’s Grandma Nancy with her three boys.
Aaron and Joe have an annual arm-wrestling face-off. For Aaron’s sake, I won’t explicitly state who won, but I will say Joe is not only impossible to beat because he’s 1) a former Marine, 2) a Federal Marshall, and 3) a regular at the gym; he’s also impossible to beat because his arm-wrestling fighting words are “No Biceps! No Biceps! No Biceps!” And, nobody wins at arm-wrestling when they’re laughing at the mock-aggression of their big brother.
Clara joins her cousins Sophia, Madelyn, and Meaghan for the annual girls-only cousin photo. I think Clara is looking very Emily Dickinson in this particular shot. Heck, all the girls remind me of some famous female literary figure. It must be the cardigans.
The boys join the girls for the full cousin shoot. Clara loves her cousin Owen and all his Hot Wheels.
Our sweet big girl.
For the first time ever, we sat through a family meal without some little two-year-old hands pulling on our skirts and pants. Clara loved spending Christmas meal at the cousin table, and like just about everything else, I spent a few minutes mourning the loss of what I was once so eager to lose. Suddenly there was no “mommy, hold me” to interrupt my devouring of some German Chocolate pie. How does it all happen so slow and so fast at the same time?
Let the William files begin. Sweet boy get some kisses on the feet from his daddy.
Snuggling with Grandma.
Telling Grandpa Santa about all the formula he wants for Christmas.
Looking so handsome in argyle.
Right now, all I need in this world are those cheeks to kiss twenty times a day.
Spending some time with Great-Grandma, the Lohmeyer Baby Whisperer.
Sharing a laugh with Grandma.
Besides sitting up (thanks to Kelsey for reminding me that it’s about time to give that baby trick a try), William’s new exploit is yanking all the food off our plates. We tried to spoonfeed him some mashed sweet potatoes, but he seems to just want to hold the stuff for now.
Clara plays with her favorite toy from the Tallahassee Santa—a marble run. She and Aaron design a new course every night these days.