books & reading memes & carnivals

A to Z: Book Meme

Saw this fun book meme @ Reading To Know. The basic idea is to list your favorite books from “A to Z”. I’ve also included a link to any books I’ve reviewed.

A – (The) Amber Spyglass by Philip Pullman
B – Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer
C – Curse of the Spellmans by Lisa Lutz
D – (The) Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown
E – (The) Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde
F – From The Mixed Up Files of Mrs Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konisburg
G – Gone With The Wind by Margaret Mitchell
H – Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
I – In Her Shoes by Jennifer Weiner
J – Jane Austen in Scarsdale by Paula Marantz Cohen
K –
L – Lamb by Christopher Moore
M – Magyk by Angie Sage
N –
O – (The) Other Boleyn Girl by Philipa Gregory
P – Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Q –
R – Rumors by Anna Godbersen (I’m currently reading but almost done with this one)
S – Sweet Far Thing by Libba Bray
T – Trickster’s Choice by Tamora Pierce
U – Uglies by Scott Westerfeld
V – (The) Virgin’s Lover by Philippa Gregory
W – (The) Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare
X –
Y –
Z –

Can you name a book for EVERY letter of the alphabet? If you play, let me know in the comments section, I’d love to see what you are all reading.

motherhood photography

Memories of Motherhood

I’m feeling nostalgic today and thought I’d take this moment to recall my favorite memories from my son’s life thus far, for no reason whatsoever – rather than wait for a birthday or milestone to justify romanticizing his life, I’m going to do it now because I love him and his wacky self everyday, even when the card companies don’t.

1. The day he was born – While much of central and southern US was dealing with a tornado of epic proportions, my husband and I embarked on a tornado of our own – a whirlwind dizzying experience called the first weeks of parenthood. The morning began at the wee hours of 6am or so as we entered the hospital for an induced labor (the little man was a week late according to the professionals) and ended at just minutes before midnight when we finally had an emergency c-section – momma may have been ready to meet her son, but her body was decidedly not cooperating. But the miracle of science let me meet him that night anyway, not that I remember much of it – it was a long hard day that perfectly symbolizes the long hard weeks and months to follow. But I love that day regardless, as it was the day my son came into the world, and thus hugely important for me.

MLM is born

2. I took a lot of pictures of MLM during that first year, hundreds in fact, but some of my favorites happened while taking walks through the park near my in laws – this one specifically is a real favorite as it shows off his bluer than blue eyes.

blue eyed boy

3. Our first Christmas – MLM didn’t quite know what to make of Old Saint Nick, and even now he really isn’t quite sure what it’s all about – he’s a big fan of the presents though – that he picked up on quickly. Here’s one of our first pictures of MLM with Santa:

MLM meets Santa

4. His first birthday – an event so massive we did it twice – once at my in laws and then again at my aunt’s house. There was cake – messy, messy cake – and presents. Here’s a pic of him opening presents with daddy:

happy birthday MLM (1)

5. Our first big trip – to Pennsylvania – we did Hershey Park but the real fun was had at Amish Country – here’s a cute pic of the little man on a stone turtle:

amish country

6. Exploring new places – even just a fun day at the playground with daddy had MLM discovering things he’d never even known to dream of – we love this picture of him at the playground in my hometown.

playground days

7. Getting our own place! Last fall we moved into our first apartment – the first home we could truly call our own, and I was amazed at how well MLM once again adjusted to a new home – the third in his short life. We had a lot of fun taking pictures in our new adobe – here’s an early favorite, only 8 short months ago…

home sweet home

8. Fun with hats – For awhile now, my son has enjoyed a fun new game he invented called, What Can I Wear on My Head – you may remember the potty chair incident of a week or two ago? This past Christmas he had a lot of fun with head gear – here’s a big favorite:

a christmas hat

9. Learning our ABCs – a few months ago we got MLM ABC magnets – he is now an ABC pro and can say most of the letters of the alphabet – here’s a picture of the first week with the magnets – I think mom and dad had more fun than toddler:

l o v e spells love

10. Our first snowman! This year we finally did some serious playing in the snow and daddy and MLM built their very first snowman, while mommy worked as the film crew – here’s a pic of the boys with their awesome snow results:

the snowman

11. New Friends – A few months ago I started baby sitting the son of a good friend of mine and he and MLM have become fast friends – hugs and tackles and learning to share, I took a picture of the two besties:


12. My little baby gets a big boy bed – We very recently took down the crib and put MLM in a big boy bed, which has been a wonderful experience of bed time stories, tucking in, and favorite stuffed animals. He loves being a big boy with his own turf and we love it too! Here’s a pick of MLM tucking in all his babies:

night night

13. A big boy needs a big boy haircut – or so people kept telling me – I hummed and hawed for months but when we finally made the snip I was in LOVE with the results – you’ve seen this pic recently, but feast your eyes again on my very big boy!

the haircut

14. Oh yes and a brief blast from the recent past, his 2nd birthday – twice as much fun as the first – in our lovey apartment – here’s a pic of MLM checking out his ice cream cake!

happy birthday MLM (2)

14 – no cliched amount of numbers, no Halmark occasiona, just 14 of my favorite memories from the last 26 months or so… Happy Monday everyone!


Happy First Day of April!

So this morning is the 1st of April which means a few things to me:

(one) the rent is due. This is never a happy thought – but knowing we have more than enough money to pay the rent IS a slightly happy thought – for a few months now we’ve been feeling a bit tight in the checkbook so things evening out is a very nice sight indeed!

(two) MLM is turning 2 in just SIX more days! That means I need to wrap presents, clean the apartment and make a final decision on what kind of cake I am making – plain old cake or cupcakes, teenie tiny Elmo face cupcakes, gigantic Elmo Face cake, a Lego Cake? Can I do all of the above, but magically have it all done in an hour or so? Can I have the kitchen of my dreams that has all spices, frosting, sprinkles, and zest I could ever need, a built in cooling rack system, several ovens, plenty of counter space and a spiffy decor? This kitchen of course will never get dirty or need cleaning because all messes made will magically evaporate into thin air as they hit the surfaces of this dreamy dream kitchen. Two will also mean getting ready for things like potty training, thinking about toddler beds, lots of new words, ABC’s, him getting smarter than I could ever imagine, and this Fall, me trying to have a second baby… what, oh yeah. That’s right. More on that later though. Moving on…

(three) I also have a baby shower to throw VERY soon AND a good friend moving back to the state after moving away for quite some time. The circumstances surrounding the move may not be happy, but having her back for awhile will be happy-making indeed!

(four) And yes, yes, it’s April Fools. Which means I’ll be reading tons of bogus blogs and news articles and frequently find myself saying, “Huh? Wha…oh right. April Fools… whatev…” Maybe my sense of humor needs some oiling, but this day has never felt terribly funny to me – the only time it was ever that big of a deal was in college when the newspaper I ran would do a big April Fools issue which was always fantastically fun to put together. But now it’s just me and my two year old who has no idea that it’s a Big Prank Day (thank god, I may be in serious trouble in a few years when he catches on).

Anyway, Happy April Fools Day to everyone who likes that kind of thing, and for the rest of us, don’t worry, only 13 more hours to go, then it can just be “Yay, it’s April, now maybe the weather will get better!!!”