Thursday, December 23, 2010

Hugs & Nuggles

Emily has hit a very affectionate stage, and it's soo sweet. She'll climb up behind me on my chair, drape herself over my shoulder & say "hug". Once she has you in a hug, she'll often hold on tight and say "nuggle" (snuggle). She hugs books that have pictures of people she loves. She snuggles her pretzels. She tries to hug our neighbors horses (through the window & across the field). When she is upset or hurt she will hold out her arms & say "sad...hug!". Here she is watching the Patriots with Austin.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Things Emily Is Into: December 2010

'No (Snow)
I finally got Emily snow pants, and we've been out in the snow every day since. The few inches we have on the ground are just enough for her to tramp around in. Here she is with Dada on a family walk.

Becky visited in November & introduced Emily to reading under a blanket. Since then, every time Emily is read a book, she insists on a "banket".

Alasdair bought a giant bucket of preztels at BJ's a few weeks ago, and Emily is obsessed. Every time I open the pantry door she starts asking for them. I've been using them to keep her happy in the car - now she asks for one every time I put her in her carseat. The child who eats like a bird will walk around with petzoo's in her mouth all. day. long.

Emily has started to gravitate towards certain other kids. Our church here is full of kids her age, which is super. When we pull up to our friends' house for community group, she starts talking about "Ell-eet" (Elliot). She'd been in a phase of sobbing every time I left her in the nursery... then this last week her friend Austin came over to see her when we walked in, and she saw another little girl she likes & her eyes lit up. I was able to leave her there with no tears!

She's into so many things these days that I can't write about them all. Some others that come to mind: chopping her wooden fruit, stickers, dancing!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


Emily is very into hats right now and can put them on her own head. Here are a few. (There are a few more in the December album.)

(ok, not technically a hat)

Yesterday during our family walk in the snow, Emily (who was already wearing her own hat) looked at me and announced"Hat. Have it." and happily wore my hat on top of her hat for the rest of the walk.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


Emily is exactly 1.5 today. Sometimes I can't believe how old she seems. She's doing a lot of pretend play (feeding her stuffed animals, talking to herself) and really interacting with me.

We celebrated with her 18 month checkup. Emily loves th
e doctor's office. There's wooden rocking horse in the waiting room, which she's now big enough to climb up on and rock herself. She runs around the exam room and looks at everything. The best part was the brightly lit fish tank in the lab room where she had blood taken (by a woman who must have been in training because she took forever & got blood all over E's hand!). Thank goodness for the fish distraction. The office also gives each child a book at every checkup.

She's still tall. :) 33.75" I think they said. They also weighed her in kilograms (why?).. 10.5... which, according to google, is 23 lbs. She got to stand on the big girl scale. The doc isn't worried about her low weight yet, but did encourage me to feed her nice high calorie foods. Good thing she likes to eat peanut butter by the spoonful. :)

She was so tuckered out by the excitement & the shots, that she slept on my shoulder while I grocery shopped!

I don't have any new pictures to share, so here's one on the eating theme from Granny's house last month.

Sunday, December 5, 2010


Have I mentioned lately that Emily is into books?

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Where we live.

This doesn't have much to do with Emily, except that a lot of this was about making our house a baby-friendly place.

We have an arrangement with a lovely Dartmouth professor & local pastor to rent a home he owns at a discounted rate in exchange for doing our best to get & keep it in good shape. If anyone is interested, click on the link below for an album with some before (taken before we moved in in August) & after (taken the week before Thanksgiving) pictures:

A VERY BIG thank you to my mom who helped me with all of the painting as well as some cleaning, and to Alasdair who did all the bathroom upgrades himself. Oh, and to my Grammy T. for the rug in the living room.

We still have more to do...I'm trying to get motivated to paint trim & sand down the window frames... we are hoping that "operation mousetrap" will take out the very noisy mice who seem to have taken over the attic!... we need to cover the windows for winter....maybe some more furniture & decorating..... but it's nice to have the biggest things settled!

We love being in a place that is so conducive to being outdoors. The cats are in heaven roaming the fields & climbing trees, Alasdair & I love walking on the trails & running on the dirt road, and Emily is always asking to play outside.


Cousin love.

It's been said many times, but we are so thankful for our families. We spent Thanksgiving with my side last week. Highlights: lots of time together in the living room playing with kids, watching football, talking, reading; the annual Friday soccer game & Ware family gathering; going for walks. Lowlight: Granny Ware's fall, broken hip, and waiting days for surgery. We were at least able to have a nice visit with her at the hospital. If you want to see all of the pictures from Thanksgiving, click here or on the words "view all photo albums" to the right.

The whole clan after Alasdair's sermon.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Aunt Bucky came to visit! Heres what happened.

About 90% this:

Along with a little bit of walking in the rain, Emily & Becky pushing the stroller around and around the house, a smattering of grownup conversation & movie watching, and bit of this:

So much fun! :)

Saturday, November 20, 2010


I have no idea where she got this from, but Emily is suddenly very interested in cleaning. Maybe she is trying to tell me something?

I found her at the end of a nap using a sock to rub at her sheet, saying "cean! cean!" and whenever she came to a dirty spot she said "ucky!". (In her defense, the sheet was pretty dirty.) In the grocery store while I was looking at orange juice, I turned around to find her rubbing her hand in a wet spot on the cloor. "Cean."

Friday, November 19, 2010


The first year we lived in Philadelphia, I did a lot of complaining about the weather (too hot! not enough snow!) and the customer service (pretty universally awful) and the general dirty city-ishness of everything. At some point I decided to start a list of all the things I really liked about living there. I never got around to actually writing it, but I did keep a running mental list of the things I would miss most. Emily & I are visiting for a few days, before I leave her with Granny Groves for the weekend & join Alasdair at the CCEF annual conference in Virginia.
This is our first real visit back (except for the moving weekend, which didn't really count) and I am struck by how much it still feels like home. I feel pretty settled in in NH, and happy there. But Philadelphia/Glenside is still very comfortable. It probably helps that it was 40 degrees & freezing rain in NH yesterday, and today it's in the 60's & sunny here.

So, I'm inspired to post about some of my favorite things about Philly.
In no particular order (except the 1st one:).

People. This one is obvious. We LOVED living 10 minutes away from my family-in-law; they aren't just family but among our best friends. We made other dear friends (mostly through shared Boston sports passion!) and couldn't believe our luck when a favorite Dartmouth couple moved to town last year.

(The only family photo I can come up with on short notice is from 2006!)

(Pre Evyn, Emily, Madda & Guilliam!)

Wissahickon Park. Philly has more trees & parks than any other city I can think of. This park was our woodland retreat in the midst of the concrete. Right off Lincoln Drive, but you feel like you're in the middle of the woods. Miles & miles of trails. Our entrance to the park is also down the street from our favorite cheesesteak place, and I would always start craving cheesesteaks at the end of a run. Dalessandro's should probably make the list of things I miss too!

Target. I didn't used to like Target. (Too much red...) In Philly we lived very near a terrible awful Walmart: badly organized, bad service and LONG LINES at every time of day. After one particularly terrible shopping experience, I left everything in my cart, drove the road to the brand new Target, and never looked back. It was clean! The carts rolled smoothly! The employees knew where everything was! Now we are back to the land of no-Target... sigh.

Springtime. Summer & winter leave a lot to be desired (see above) BUT fall lasts forever since it doesn't really get cold until December, and Spring is just spectacular. It comes early and the city bursts with color.

Germantown Avenue. The cobblestones are not the greatest for driving, and it takes ages to get anywhere on a Saturday... but it has so much character. The nice shops in Chestnut Hill (and the since-closed Borders where I waited in line at midnight to buy Harry Potter 7!) to the funky Mt. Airy restaurants (we ate a lot of takeout Indian food from Tiffin and spent many hours pre-Emily watching football games or unwinding after Frisbee games at McMenamin's).

Walking/running/biking/swimming along the Schuylkill. Colorful boathouse row. Brisk wind off the water. We spent many summer evenings biking the Art Museum to the Falls Bridge loop while I trained for the Philly Women's Tri. (Yes, I swam in the Schuylkill. And lived to tell about it.)

New Life Glenside. We loved our church. Vibrant, real, diverse. Serious about living out the gospel in the real world.

Walk A Crooked Mile Bookstore. This little train station - turned - amazing used bookstore was just over a (crooked?) mile from our house. A neighborhood staple, the owners would post warning signs of suspicious local happenings, host community concerts, etc. One winter the neighbors decorated with Christmas lights and set out gingerbread cookies & cider. We loved to stop & browse the outdoor displays while on a walk, and now & then would take the time to wander about the 80,ooo+ books crammed inside.

Citizen's Bank Park. One of the best perks of my job (2nd to the annual Bahamas trip!) was free sports tickets. I'm not a huge hockey fan, Sixers games are depressing (plus I go insane by about the 3rd time the automated announcer says "Andre Iguadala-dala-dala-dala..!"), Eagles tickets were hard to come by (plus I'm not sure I could spend that much time surrounded by Eagles fans... apologies to my siblings-in-law!)... BUT even before they were great, the Phillies were easy to fall in love with & CBP is a beautiful ball park. After growing up at Fenway, I couldn't believe a baseball stadium could really be that clean! I was able to go to 10+ games a year, and can't really picture a better way to spend a summer evening. Emily made her first trip at 6 weeks old.

Location. Philly is on the way to everywhere on the East Coast. We often got to see friends when they needed a place to stay along a road trip. We could also make weekend trips to visit friends & family in DC, NY, Boston, NH, OH etc. [Related: something I do NOT miss... driving through New Jersey.]

Smith Playground. If you have kids, you have to check this place out. It's huge, free, clean & diverse (I regularly heard 3-4 languages while we were there.) Lots of outdoor play areas, including a special spot for kids under 5, plus an old mansion that has been completely turned into a playhouse.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Visit to Philly

We visited my wonderful mother-in-law & brother-in-law on our way to the CCEF Conference in Virginia last weekend, and then left Emily there for the weekend. I'm pretty sure she never noticed we were gone! [I also got to visit Becky at the TFA! No pictures, but they couldn't capture the place anyway.]
Upon arriving at the house, she immediately headed for Granny (by way of the basket of books & this random hat). And yes, she wore her ladybug suit for the 7 hr car ride down.

When Granny couldn't be had, she enjoyed playing piano with Uncle Alden & bouncing on the trampoline with her friends William & Madda.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Things Emily Is Into: Fall 2010

Emily is still into a lot of the old favorites: books (she'll "read" to herself now too), rocks, bow-bows, etc., as well as some new things. She's becoming very verbal, so lots of her new interests have Emi-words to go with them. We keep meaning to write a list of all her words, but I think there are too many now.

"On! On!"
Lately Emily has been bringing me things to put on her. Usually her finger puppets, or a shirt she has dragged out of the bin of workout clothes that lives on the floor of my closet, or a jacket we've left lying around. Or her ladybug costume from Halloween. Here she is wearing Daddy's jacket.

[or "Hauwp" ? I can't decide how to spell it, but it's Emily's word for "help"]
She's learning to ask my for help when she can't do something on her own. But more often, she wants to "hewp" me. She has to have her hand on the handle of the broom or the shopping cart. She also likes to mimic what we are doing. She'll run her hand along the wall when she sees me painting, or join Alasdair in stretching after a run.

None of us can get enough of looking out the big windows into the field behind our house. The look & colors keep changing, and it's so pretty. Emily spends a lot of time looking out & pointing & yelling "neighhh!" [at the horses next door] or "muhn" [moon]. We also try to get out regularly to the trails in those woods.

Monday, November 1, 2010


I just found some old pictures on my camera, that reminded me of something I meant to post over the summer. I love corn on the cob. When it's fresh & local in late August, it's probably my favorite food. Here's a picture of Emily's involvement in eating corn in 2009... and then in 2010.

I'm glad she shares my love!

Sunday, October 17, 2010


We had visitors this weekend! Eowyn & her friend Miatta drove 12+ hours from Ohio to spend a couple days with us. :) Emily dubbed them "Aunnie" and "Mi" and couldn't get enough of playing with them. Yesterday we went for a walk in the woods, sat around the living room talking, and watched the Phillies game. Today was church, and playing on the Green.

When Emily woke up from her nap this afternoon, she immediately lunged for the door, asking for Aunnie... she dissolved into tears on being reminded that Aunnie had gone bye-bye.

Friday, October 15, 2010


My dad is coaching the Westport girls varsity soccer team this fall. Emily and I spent two days this visiting him & watching a couple games. We also went for a walk in the woods and played at a playground. We were able to see their best game of the season, a 4-1 victory over a good team, and go out to dinner with Lily (my dad's cousin & the head coach, and her daughter Valentina). Emily had a blast at the games, and spent most of the time yelling "Ball! Ball!" and dashing towards the field. Luckily, there were a few dogs and other kids there to distract her.

A Chocolate Day

It's dreary and rainy today. A nice day to work from home. :) We had to venture out to the post office, and passed the library on the way back. Our little "borough" of Hanover has a sweet little one-room library. One of the librarians is a friend of a friend whose daughters are going to start babysitting Emily. They have a big basket full of board books, so Emily loves it there. Today we brought home a Baby Einstein VHS tape and snuggled up on the couch with some hot chocolate. We're resting up for our visit from Auntie Eowyn and her friend this weekend!

Unrelated, but here's a picture of the view behind our house on a nice day.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Florida Family

We added a new cousin to the Tavilla clan this month. Congratulations Dianna & Kevin!
I love family weddings for catching up with family from all over the country (a few other cousins have gotten married in the last few years, and it's fun to get to know their spouses a little), and since Dianna & I have friends in common from Boston, I got to see some friends too. And, of course... I met my brand new nephew! We even managed a picture of Grammy & Grampy T with all five of their great-grandkids, with everyone sort of looking at the same camera. Of course, it wasn't my camera (which I didn't bring - silly), so I'll have to wait to get a copy.

Very conveniently for us, a lot of Alasdair's family lives within an
hour of the wedding location. We went down a couple days early and spent some time with Emily's great-grandparents. Here she is with Alasdair's grandfather, having a snack. Highlights for Emily: swimming in the pool, and playing with cousin Alexa (who turned 5 while were there there), and generally getting lots of attention. Highlights for A & I: playing lots of pinochle!, Alasdair golfing with Uncle Brian, and just hanging out with family we wish we saw more!

Oh! And Uncle Brian & Aunt Michelle baby-sat Emily for us so that we could enjoy the wedding reception baby-free. Fun. :)

This was the first time we'd flown with Emily as a toddler, and I was rather dreading it... but it really went fine. Emily never slept on the plane, but she never really cried either. We had an extra seat for her each leg of the trip, and she spent most of the flight climbing on & off the seat and taking the magazines out of all the seat back pockets. She discovered crayons (good tip from my SIL), and a new toy where you put plastic shapes in the right holes (thanks Aunt Michelle!) and was delighted by all the airplane snacks.

1) I forgot one funny part of the trip. Emily & I spent a day with Aunt M
ichelle & Taylor, and the family's 4 dogs (to Emily's delight). One of the dogs was a great dane, and every time Emily saw him, she would say "neiighh!"

2) Here's a picture of my grandparents with their 5 great grandchildren!

Perfect. Fall. Weekend.

I couldn't have planned a better weekend than this.

My mom spent the night Thursday, on her way to the lake for Oktoberfest, and delivered the free TV stand she got us from Craigslist. On her way out the door on Friday morning, she offered to take Emily with her for the day. After a moment of "Can I really do that?" we threw together an overnight bag, put the carseat in Mimi's car, and they were off. I walked around in circles for a few minutes trying to figure out what to do with myself. I spent Friday getting LOTS of work done (finally felt caught up on work, and got my head around some confusing accounting for the counseling center), going on a lovely run/hike up the mountain in our backyard, finishing up painting the kitchen, and watching the Phillies comeback victory. After 8 straight hours of sleep (a rarity since Emily has been waking up at night again), and a pancake breakfast with Alasdair while getting my fantasy football lineup tuned up (I'm undefeated so far!), I headed for the lake myself via the heart-stoppingly beautiful drive through peak VT foliage, and caught up with some friends on the phone.

Emily did great on her own with Mimi (and Papa, Uncle Mike, Auntie Bekah, cousins Rosalie & Daniel). She was never sad about missing Mommy and had a blast playing with Rosalie. She didn't sleep real well, and my mom is a trooper for doing the night shift with her.

Emily and I spent Saturday afternoon playing outside and driving around on the gator with the whole family. It's so fun to watch the girls play together now. In the evening was a German feast with my extended family at the Big House, including some old friends of my grandparents I hadn't seen in 15 years. Here are a few pictures I took on my phone over the weekend. Most of them are on my dad's camera... so I'll get those added eventually.

Emily & I woke up early this morning to drive home (again, hard to keep my eyes on the road with the foliage, the mist on the lake, etc.) Oh, and my pumpkin latte. Mmm. Home for church, then home for some apple cider and nap, and then a visit & walk in the woods with Jackie Brendan. Dinner of acorn squash in the crockpot & sausages on the grill. Next up: the Eagles & Phillies both on TV, and apple crisp fresh out of the oven.

It doesn't get much better than this.

ps - We had a GREAT trip to FL to see both of our families last week, and I will get to posting about that soon!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

James Taylor

The first time we took Emily on a road trip, she was two weeks old. We played a lot of music in the car to help keep her calm. (She's always loved being sung to... and you can only sing for so many hours in the car!) She seemed to relax most to simple music, like one male vocal with guitar. Two favorites are James Taylor and Jeremy Ware (a college friend of ours who has recorded a couple CD's). To this day, if she is fussy in the car and we play James Taylor, it quiets her down and helps her fall asleep.

For some reason right now, we don't have any Jeremy CD's in the car, and the only JT we have is a burned greatest hits CD that skips after track 7. We have listened to those 7 songs a lot lately. Here she is on our drive from NH to PA on Friday. Imagine "Sweet Baby James" playing in the background.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Beh Buh

We are on day three of nap-strike (teething molars maybe? she's also drooling like mad.), so I need to remind myself of some cute things about Emily. :)

Her most recent obsession s belly buttons! She is delighted to show your hers, and to find yours. She also likes to rub hers as she falls asleep.

A few beh-buh related events...
* Last week at the at beach, she saw a pregnant woman who was wearing a bikini. From across the swimming area, Emily repeatedly squealed, pointed and yelled "beh buh!" Awkward.

* It was cold the other day (welcome to summer in NH - it was both hot enough to go to the beach, and cold enough to nap in winter pj's), so I put her down for a nap in one-piece pajamas. Twenty minutes later I found her sobbing in her crib, clawing at the belly of her pj's and crying "beh buh". It's hard to dress a small child warmly and still leave access to her belly button.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Things Emily Is Into: Summer 2010

4. Climbing. I recently found her here:

3. Toothbrushing. Especially with Daddy's toothbrush. :)

2. Nana: Her word for "banana'' and "more". She will often point up to the top of the fridge where we keep them to ask for some. Another recent 2nd favorite is blueberries. She has been gobbling them up this week.

1. Rocks! Her #1 favorite toy. She will spend ages picking up and moving around the rocks in our gravel driveway. She especially loves to drop rocks through the holes in our hubcap.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Daniel Kirkland Ware

My sweet nephew was born on August 27. (My parents' anniversary.) The stats: 8lb4oz &21.5" He's named for his grandfathers, and is apparently a good sleeper already. I can't wait to meet him!
Meeting his big sister. (Rosalie, 18mo)

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Whale Watch!

We (Grammy & Grampy T, my parents, Nick, Dianna, Angie, and the three of us) celebrated Grampy T's 86th birthday, by going whale-watching. When I realized a couple days before the trip that the boat ride was four hours long, I got a little nervous about how Emily would do on a boat for that long. When we arrived at the boat, we were told that the whales had moved further away, and it would be a 6 hour cruise. We took a deep breath and decided to consider it an adventure. After a long three hours (I've developed a bit of a motion sickness problem in my old age, so I was feeling not-so-great most of the time), we arrived at the spot the captain had promised us. The whales have been uncharacteristically social this summer - staying together in a large group... so we were treated to an amazing display. We saw dozens of whales, often in groups of 3-4 surfacing and diving right alongside the boat. From a bit more of a distance, one whale breached (came completely out of the water to flip) over and over. Another came up right next to the boat to slap his tail down on the water, splashing us as we watched from the railing, and then rolling over on his back & side and waving & slapping his flippers. Incredible, and worth the 7 hours asea! (Unfortunately, we managed not to get a group picture.)

Westport Week

We spent the first week of August at the lake with my parents. Emily enjoyed everything much better without the 103 degree fever she had during the July trip! She played in the kiddie pool and the lake, but her favorite was the Sandy Beach.

Emily and Caitlyn, 2nd cousins once removed
(technically Caitlyn is my generation)

Another highlight of the week was the first Lee Family entry in the Westport Quadrathlon. Lilly & Nayeli paddled (the only all-female canoe!), I swam, we found a friend to run (ok, so not quite all-family), and Alasdair biked. We may not have won (ok we finished 8th out of 8... or we would have if Alasdair's bike hadn't had a flat tire at about mile 22 of 25), but we had a great time!