new sisters

new sisters
Penelope holding 10 day old Violet

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

From The Mouth of Penelope

"Her name is Turner Sunflower Jean Daisy, but you can call her Dais." This was said to me about one of her horses this morning as I did the dishes.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Strawberry Picking

Last week I took the girls strawberry picking at the same farm my family always went to during my childhood, Quonset View Farm. It is a beautiful place, overlooking the water. It always makes me want to become a strawberry farmer. It was fun, Penelope had a blast, and managed to help me fill the basket in about 20 minutes, despite the fact that she ate about five strawberries for every one that she picked. Violet didn't do any picking, she was in the backpack the whole time, but next year she will be helping, I'm sure. With these strawberries we made muffins, a strawberry/rhubarb pie for Father's day, strawberry syrup, and just ate tons and tons too. I have a huge bag in the freezer as well. I think we might have to go back one more time before they are done though, they are just so good! Also, I am happy to report that I managed to get every single strawberry stain out of this darling dress that Penelope has been wearing constantly.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

A Beautiful Summer Solstice

Violet enjoying blueberry pancakes.

Tasting honeysuckle.

Snack Picnic.

Violet heading for the pond.

Praying Mantis Egg Case

Violet looking so much like baby pictures of me.

Look who chose this day to stand completely on her own!

Mama and Pen swimming.

Solstice dinner, tofu-spinach quiche, salad, bread, and  ice water with mint from our garden.

Violet drumming down the sun with the water pitcher and the quiche serving thing.

Goodnight, Glorious Sun.
We had such a nice Summer Solstice. The day began with delicious blueberry pancakes made by Steve. Then we all went for a walk at Mount Hope Farm in Bristol. We gathered wildflowers along the way, scoped out all the blackberry and raspberry for picking in the coming weeks, and while we ate the grapes we brought we watched a beautiful swan and a family of mama and baby ducks swimming among the waterlilies

When we came home we were surprised to find our praying mantis egg case had arrived earlier than we expected it, so their home had to be set up. After that we all took a nice long nap and slept through the hottest part of the day. Then, while I made our dinner Steve and the girls walked to the common to watch the carnival setting up - oh, is Penelope excited about that!

We all walked down to our little beach, Penelope and I swam and swam. It was so wonderful.  Happily my aunt sent me a bathing suit just in time for this, as the only one I had was a maternity suit from last year, which wasn't going to work.  Because Violet is very little and Steve is a water weenie, they both stayed on the shore and baby played very happily in the sand. Violet chose this very special day to stand up completely unassisted. There she stood, feet firmly planted in the sand, watching the setting sun just like a big kid. After we dried off and changed we enjoyed a picnic dinner and then some solstice appropriate stories while we ate chocolate chip cookies and watched the sun go down. It was a beautiful day.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Father's Day

Builder of Block Towers, Player of Candy Land, Dresser of Dollies, Changer of Diapers, Carrier of Babies, Reader of Stories, Pusher of Swings, Maker of Breakfast, Cuddler of Tired and Cranky Children, Daddy of Penelope and Violet. He is their good Daddy, and they love him so. Thanks for being such a wonderful father to our girls Steve. Every child deserves a father who loves them, plays with them, teaches them, and lets them know in ways both big and small that they are most precious and loved. Pen and Vi are so lucky that this true for them. And because of this, and for so many other reasons too, I love you so. Happy Father's Day!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

The Month of May

Backyard picnic with Baxter

Rainy Day Frisbee with Baxter

Penelope Spinning Yarn

Funny and Adorable Alpacas

Butterfly the Sheep

Waiting her turn to have her wool shorn off

Running in the Woods

Brickyard Pond

Brickyard Pond

Three Magical Lady's Slippers
Busy in the Sand

Penelope's Piggies

Penelope walking along the shore

Penelope and her Grandma

Baxter digging

Look! I found a shell!

Beautiful Hunter

These tears are all because her sister left to go push her doll stroller across the yard.

Baxter Boy
We spent all of last month at Baxter's house by the beach. We didn't have very good beach weather most of the time, but then our last week was perfect and we spent a lot of time in the sand and water. We enjoyed beach walks anyway during the first rainy 3 weeks, and walks in the woods too. Penelope and Violet both loved Baxter, and he loved them. He was Pen's constant companion, loyally following her around the yard, doing tricks at her command in exchange for bits of whatever snack she had in hand, chewing many of her little toys when she was busy with something other than him, and running through the forest or down the beach wildly with her. Violet won a special place in his heart by dropping everything she had to eat from her highchair. He sat faithfully beneath it and dined on avocado, vegan cheese, cereal, tofu, peas, pasta, lentils, and rice. I was reminded of how useful a dog can be at this stage of babyhood. I never had to clean the floor after a meal.

Although it was so good for Pen to have this big fuzzy dog for a friend, I was also constantly reminded that we won't be getting a dog of our own any time soon. We had a month full of thunder storms, and they terrified him, which meant hysterical barking that could not be shushed after babies had been put to bed. And the fireworks over the holiday weekend had the same effect on him. He was terrible with the chewing, although it was a good lessen for Pen about being responsible with her things and not leaving them on the floor. And there was also the raisin incident. While we were driving in the car with Baxter one morning Penelope told me that Baxter had eaten the bag of raisins she'd brought for a snack. Somewhere in the back of my mind I seemed to remember that they could be toxic to dogs, so when we got home I called the vet to make sure and was told to get him in right away. Several hours and $200 later we had him back home, no worse for the wear.

We have been home for a week now, and Penelope talks about him constantly. She misses her shaggy friend. Someday in the not too far future I will delight in getting my girl a dog of her own. I will love the whole experience as much as her, and it will be a very well loved dog, to be sure. But I want it to be a loved and cared for animal, not something that puts me over the edge. So we will wait until the time is right for us. In the meantime we will happily accept requests to stay with Baxter to get our doggie fix.

And now we are home. Back in Bristol, and at my favorite time of year. June, my birthday month, when the linden trees and the roses are so intoxicatingly fragrant. When the weather is warm and lovely, breezy and not humid yet. When I could just stay outside all day long. And the excitement of the 4th of July is building, the town getting ready for it's big parade, people getting their yards and gardens together, flags hung from every home. Soon the free concerts down by the water will begin, and the carnival will come - to the delight of a certain little somebody at this house- and then after parades and fireworks and concerts are over it will be time to prepare for my little girl's birthdays. They will be one and four this summer, as crazy as that is!