Thursday, November 06, 2008

Save the North Shore Birth Center!

I just received an email from Jennie at Crunchy Granola Baby (Salem, MA). Apparently there is a proposal to close down the North Shore Birth Center at Beverly Hospital. While I didn't give birth there, I know how valuable the Birth Center is. It would be a tragedy to lose such an important place. Here is the body of the email that I received (you can also join the cause on Facebook):

Immediate Action is Needed Dear Friends,
The North Shore Birth Center has provided all of my birthing care, including pre and post natal, and they continue to provide me with superb care. It is the perfect place to plan for a natural, unmedicated birth, in the care of compassionate, capable midwives. It is a safe place to have a "home like" birth. That may change, the Birth Center is in danger and needs our help.Please advocate for our right to choose where we would like to birth. I am asking you to share your Birth stories and experiences about the North Shore Birth Center with the Northeast Health System's Board of Trustees. They need to know how much the center means to so many of us and how having the center allowed so many of us the opportunity to have the birth we desire. Lets let the Board know how important the Birth Center is to all of us by sharing with them our own Birth experiences.

Thank you,Jennie and Tommie
------------------------------------
Save the Birth Center!!!
There is a very serious move to stop all births at the North Shore Birth Center. It is being recommended to the Board of Trustees of Northeast Health Corporation that all birth center patients be required to labor and birth at Beverly Hospital. NSBC would continue to provide Gyn and prenatal care at their current site. On November 18th there will be a proposal to the Board of Trustees of Northeast Health Corporation to no longer allow women to labor or birth at the North Shore Birth Center. The North Shore Birth Center was established in 1980 to meet the needs of 'low risk women' wanting an alternative to home and hospital births. Since then the North Shore Birth Center has birthed over 6,494 babies, providing quality, low cost, compassionate care in an alternative setting. Letters in support of the North Shore Birth Center can be sent to your local paper and to:
Northeast Health System's Board of Trustees
c/o Mary Ellen Lear, Secretary
Beverly Hospital
85 Herrick Street
Beverly, MA 01915
For more information contact Pav Kneedler at Kneedlerpd@comcast.net

Monday, October 20, 2008

Sunday, October 05, 2008

First "Solid"

Our first attempt at liquified bananas...its a start, though she still has the thrusting reflex with her tongue.  Oh, and she has two teeth...
Cheers

Friday, October 03, 2008

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Ains gets a tooth

That's right, after many cranky days Ainsley got her first tooth last Thursday. She's now working on number two. Fun. As you can see, she enjoys "brushing" her tooth. Except for when she pokes herself in the eye.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Doin' the Puyallup!

Here's Ains at her first Puyallup Fair! Next time she'll be big enough to enjoy all of the animals!

Apparently all of the walking around wore Ainsley out. I saw this nice armchair and thought I would try it out. As I sat down I asked, "What do you think of this chair Ains?" As we leaned back, her arms flopped out, her head dropped back against me, and her eyes fluttered closed. It was hilarious--the passersby all enjoyed it too! My eyes are closed just to make the photo look better. :)

Monday, September 15, 2008

Honey...we're home...

Well, we've been back in WA for 12 days now. It still feels like vacation to a certain degree, but I think that we're starting to settle in a bit. We still have quite a lot to unpack and sort through, but at least we're not living out of a suitcase. Ains is starting to hit her rhythm too, which is nice because she's the one who needs some sense of normalcy the most.

The three girls (my mom, Ains, and I) went to the Puyallup fair on opening day. It was a lot of fun and Ains was really good. I have a great story and picture to share...but you'll have to wait for another post for that. We had scones (mmmm...) and checked out all of the exhibition halls. The weather was perfect and you can't really beat getting in for free. :)

Yesterday we checked out the local Episcopal church (also called Christ Church). We were prepared for anything because while the website didn't have anything posted that would cause concern we still didn't know where the church stood on some things. Thankfully, we didn't have any outright heresy or teaching that is contrary to what we believe. The service was "short" (a mere 70 minutes) and the people were really nice. We were greeted during the peace by a good number of folks --including Father Ben-- as well as after the service. We would have stayed for a bit more of the fellowship hour time but Ains was tired and hungry which doesn't usually bode well for being social. We'll likely go back this Sunday and hopefully their choir will be singing. That should be good.

Joshua starts work tomorrow at his new Starbucks and I am still looking for employment. I hate finding new jobs, and it's all the more difficult now that I actually am getting to be a stay at home mom. I know that it can't last, but I am loathe to give it up. Please continue to pray for us as I look for a job and we settle back in to life in the NW.

ps...to our MA peeps...we MISS you all so much!!! just thought you should know....

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Peace out to MA

We have less than 24 hours left in this fine Commonwealth in which we have lived for almost exactly four years. There are many things that I could wax poetic about here, but I will be brief...mostly because I still have to pack. We will miss the friends who have become our surrogate family out here. We will miss the four distinct seasons. We will miss random wild turkeys on the side of the road. We will miss Dunkin Donuts. Oh wait--that last one was a joke! All sappiness aside, we will leave some part of our hearts here in MA with the people we love.

On a practical note, we will be radio silent for the next few days as we make the coast to coast move. We are still reachable at our new numbers, but email will be limited.

Monday, September 01, 2008

We move on Wednesday?!? Who thought that was a good idea?!??!

Well, the moving part is a good idea...packing...not so much...

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Getting bigger!

Today Ainsley is five months old! I can hardly believe that she's so old already! Okay, maybe five months isn't ancient comparatively speaking. But it seems like just yesterday that she was only a twinkle in our eyes...and now she's trying to sit up, cracking up at our silly faces, and continuing to amaze us with how attentive and smart she is. Seriously, I could not have asked for a better baby. She is wonderful and every day I grow to love her even more. It's surprising to realize how much love I can have for such a tiny little person who doesn't even understand love yet. She just knows that I'm always there for her, to take care of every need. I guess maybe she gets it to some extent. Anyway, I just wanted to share some mommy-musings on this my daughter's five month birthday. :)

Friday, August 29, 2008

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

"I Got Pictures of Your Toes"


So, it's been a bit colder here recently, and to prevent the goose from waking up from your second nap prematurely, I added this blue blanket, which was under the other main "heavy" blanket. Upon her waking, I removed the top blanket only to find the above situation. I had to get the camera...obviously. Hence the little song I made up for her.
"I got pictures of your toes...."

Friday, August 22, 2008

Discouraged...

That is what I am right now. I have applied for over ten different jobs and have gotten nowhere. Joshua does have a store to transfer to once we're back out in WA, but I have nothing. Although I have always been the primary breadwinner, I have never before felt the burden of it before. We are blowing pretty much everything on the move, and we'll still have bills on the other end. Abstractly I know that the Lord will provide--He always does--but that doesn't make it any easier to actually walk in faith. My parents are being gracious enough to let us stay with them for a bit while we get settled out there, but I don't want to be a burden on them. On top of it all, I really just want to be a stay at home mom and raise my baby. At this moment I just really want to go stand out on my porch and yell really loudly.

Sheesh.

(your prayers are coveted)

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Jumperoo


Okay, so we caved and bought Ains a jumperoo. We had a 20% off coupon! In spite of the fact that we didn't really have the money to buy such a thing, we got it for her anyway because she likes being upright so that she can see the world but she hasn't mastered the fine art of sitting up yet. We also thought that it could be helpful as we frantically pack up our lives here in MA over the next 2.5 weeks! Holy Cow! Anyway, here's a picture of her enjoying her new "toy."

Friday, August 08, 2008

Oy!

So, I just made the unsettling realization that we have very little in the way of 9 month clothes for Ains. This is problematic a)because she is starting to need this size and b) because we are moving and about to be poor. We had so much 6 month stuff that I didn't even think about the next size up. Geez. So, here is my shameless plea...if you want to donate to Ainsley's wardrobe, she would appreciate it (us too!). We need pretty much everything...onesies, pants, dresses, etc. She fits best in Carter's, Vitamins Baby, and Gap/Old Navy. Also...if you are interested, we have updated her wishlist. And if you're short on cash like us, prayers and love are always welcome.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Friday, August 01, 2008

Long Overdue Update

Although I doubt that we'll hear many complaints about the fact that this has turned into the "Ainsley photo blog," I figured that it was time to actually put some words up here and fill y'all in on what's going on in our lives.

Today is August 1st. That means that we move back to Seattle in 34 days. This fact conjures up a plethora of emotions in me. The overwhelming feeling is one of joy that we will be back with our families in a climate that my body can handle. However, there is also sadness that we are leaving our church family, friends, and CBD here in MA. It has been odd and at times hard to make the mental transition from planning on being here indefinitely to having only a short time left before moving away. The third feeling is one that has just reared its head--mostly because I am now realizing how much must be done in the next 34 days. This feeling is panic. Looking around our apartment, there are a few boxes packed but it is mostly one giant unpacked mess. Yikes. Joshua is a superstar and he has begun the arduous task of packing up our life into cardboard boxes, labeling each one, and stacking them in the corner of our living room. The idea is that the stack will increase and my level of panic will decrease. That's the idea anyway.

For those of you who don't know, we will be living with my parents for a little while as we locate jobs and an appropriately located home (thanks Mom & Dad!!!). This alleviates some of the stress of moving back because we won't be homeless and living in our Corolla. As of right now, Joshua is planning on transferring to a Starbucks location out there. However, please keep the job situation in your prayers as Joshua would love to be doing something with photography as he gets his own business up and running. I would also love to transition into the supplemental income person instead of the breadwinner (mostly so that I can spend more time with my precious girl). So please, please, please be praying for us in this area of our lives.

Ainsley is full of personality and she keeps us highly entertained. While she is currently on a sort of nap strike, we still take delight in her and every moment that we spend together. Everything is a new adventure for her, and I am constantly reminded of the wideness of God's grace and the depth of His love for us every time I look at her.

Last, but not least, I have added the beginnings of a wishlist for Ains in the sidebar. This is for those of you out there who like to get a jump start on Christmas shopping--or for those of you who desire to bless us with baby stuff. I have tried to indicate which items are top priorities for us, so keep that in mind as you peruse.

Well, it's off to bed for me...I'm one tired Mama...

World Breastfeeding Week

Today is the start of World Breastfeeding Week! You can check out all the info on the La Leche League site

Here's to all the mothers out there who are giving their babies the best start! (and for those moms who can't--for whatever reason--cheers to you for doing the best for your baby.)

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

A Dress from Alex (and Hawaii)

Sam the Ninja Spider

Meet Sam. Sam is a Ninja. Sam is also a spider. Earlier this week I attempted to send Sam the way of the Dodo, and he adeptly dodged my attacks as if I were no more than a Padawan on my first day of light-saber training. Following this initial run in, we met again on the fields of battle, and I was again rebuffed in my attempt to smoosh him like the arachnid that he is. So...I let him live...dunt dunt dun (or, I guess he let me live!??). Sam hasn't bitten anyone, and he mainly keeps to the periphery of the ceiling, except last night when I got home I saw him on my monitor calibrator. This is the best shot of him out of the several I took; chalk it up to his Ninja ability to go undetected. So far we have reached an agreement of neutrality, and after all, spiders are supposed to eat bugs right? Well, I don't particularly like bugs...
Cheers

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Intrepid Photog



See my photoblog (where my pictures live online) at joshuamaharphotography.com/photoblog/

Friday, July 11, 2008

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Monday, June 30, 2008

And the other way...

She does this roll much more consistently...to the point of frustrating her father when he tries to put her down for a nap. Silly Goose! Don't mind the crying--I turned her over to get the video of the roll and she was not too pleased with me. Hopefully she'll figure out that she can roll back the other way soon. Fun times!

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Mad Photography Skills


I, Sarah, am supposed to be learning how to use Joshua's D80. This was one of the shots I got while using it the other day.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Survived...

Today was my first day back to work. It was only a half day, so that made it much easier. I know that many women go back to work after they have children, but it's harder than it sounds. I've spent all day, every day, for the last three months with my sweet girl. Don't get me wrong, I like my co-workers...but they just aren't as cute or entertaining as Ains is. It's so fulfilling to watch her play in her jungle and realize that she can grab the hanging animals. Or smile to myself as she tries her hardest to roll over from back to front (even though she can't negotiate the shoulder yet). She's a treat, and it will be hard to be away from her every weekday. But I survived today and I will continue to do so. Plus being with grown-ups isn't all bad. So here's to all you working moms...I don't know how you do it, but you have my ever-increasing respect.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Flashback

Dudes...check out this craziness...

New Kids on the Block

These guys were my first concert...and now they're back together. Rad.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Music lover

Our apologies to all for not posting for a while. Things have been a little crazy around here...but that's for another post. I just wanted to share something funny about Ainsley. Joshua has been working through the pictures he took for a wedding a few weekends ago, and part of that process includes waiting while the computer makes changes to multiple files at a time. So in the meantime, he does other things to keep him occupied. The last few days, he has decided to play guitar while he waits. He's played for Ains a few other times, but I haven't been around. However, I was here both yesterday and today to attest to the fact that Ainsley is fascinated by the guitar. She watches in rapt attention as Daddy strums away. She smiles and giggles and stomps her little feet. It is seriously one of the most adorable things ever. So now we know...if we want to keep her occupied and happy, break out the six string. :)

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Rolling...

Here's Ains' new trick...she did it quite a few times in a row...both ways...my mom even witnessed it...groovy...

From Seattle...










Since Ains and I are in Seattle, some folks have been missing the nearly daily posts that Joshua puts up. So, in his stead, here are some fresh pics to set your eyes upon. Enjoy!

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Looking at Lights


I miss my baby...
sad

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Sleeping

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Tummy time (or lack thereof...)

So I will be the first to admit that I am not very good at putting Ainsley down on her tummy. She's supposed to be on her tummy at least once a day so that she can develop the appropriate neck strength and motor skills necessary for crawling, etc. Well, I haven't been very good at getting her down on her tummy in her jungle (a floor mat with all sorts of colors and toys). However, now that we've started doing it on a more regular basis (ie: at least once a day for the last three days), she holds her head up like a champ. You would think that we've been doing it consistently for the last two months with how good she's doing. It just goes to show that a child can overcome her parents' failings and fears.

She's also doing better at napping in either her swing or her crib. She's still not a fan of her bassinet (maybe it's because there isn't anything to look at in there). But I figure we ease our way into it--let her learn to love sleeping out of our arms--and she'll do much better than if we tried to go cold turkey. I'm hoping that as she gets bigger, not only will she sleep longer at night, but she'll sleep better in the places she's supposed to sleep. Here's hoping at least, right?

Anyway, I'm so proud of our girl and how well she does with things. I can't wait to see what she does next.

Friday, May 23, 2008

So there are some books I like...

So now that I have all this time to read...
http://bestbookdeal.com/wishlist/userid=231095148167
Anyone who wants to buy me more books...
Cheers

Thursday, May 22, 2008

So big!


Ainsley had her two month checkup today. There were lots of interesting things to look at, so she didn't fuss as much as last time. She weighs 12 pounds (no ounces) and is 23.5 inches long. (much to my chagrin, she'll probably be out of her 3 month clothes soon) Both measurements are in the 90th percentile. She's going to be taller than me, no doubt. :) Dr. L. says that her heart is nice and strong, her reflexes good, and that she is overall a very healthy baby. That's what we like to hear.

She also had her first round of shots today. She was very good--just a little crying, but then she fell asleep in my arms. (I was afraid that I was going to cry right along with her.) So far, so good. We'll have to keep an eye on her to make sure that she doesn't experience any side effects, but I'm not too worried about it.

Overall, this last month has been one of many new things for our little girl. She's seen both sets of grandparents, taken her first plane ride, been to her first museums, attended two graduations, stayed with a babysitter (Grandma), started taking bottles (still Mama's milk, though), and so much more. She's growing in so many amazing ways, and it seems like there's something new every day. Today she's started making this really cute noise--she looks right at me, smiles, gurgles and then makes a "goo" sound. It's heart-melting. She's still very even-tempered and only cries when there's something that needs to be taken care of.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Who loves free stuff?!?

I've just entered a contest for a free Ergo baby carrier...these things are great! You can enter too---I'm a sucker for free stuff (even if it's just a possibility). :)

Win a Free Ergo Baby Carrier from Along for the Ride

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Paternal Observation #3: "I Found It!"

Sarah commented to me this morning that we only had 2 pacifiers and that she had no idea where the other had gone. This wasn't surprising. Our laundry machine hasn't been working, and so we have been using the landlord's units, so we have a lot of clothes out of place. That has been because we have had friends and family in town due to my graduation from Seminary which precludes significant tidying around the house. So on top of being clean-challenged due to lack of space, too much stuff, and a newborn, we have had a lot of good reasons to be a bit messy as of late. When Sarah informed me of the pacifier situation, I caught myself thinking that we would need Indiana Jones and his crew in here to help us find the grail...I mean the Soothie.
Thus, while trying to organize our bedroom just now I discerned that my feet (which have been bare all morning) could use some snuggly goodness, and grabbed my slippers. The left went on fine, while the right was blocked by some unknown object. When flipped upside down, the slipper yielded up (or down, as it were) its hidden treasure. Out came the Soothie. I have no idea how it got there and I suspect that this is only beginning of the missing-and-found-again-in-some-odd-place shenanigans.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Bath Hair Part Deux


Need I say more?
Cheers

Friday, May 02, 2008

our new favorite thing...

Ainsley and I have discovered our new favorite thing...her swing. We bought it last weekend after discovering that she falls asleep in our arms when we swing her. Thinking that we could use a spare pair of "arms" in order to get things done (like shower, go to the bathroom, get out of pj's into real clothes, etc), we went out and bought a swing. And we love it. She naps well in it. She'll sit in there for a while when she's awake (though she doesn't last quite as long). And because of our fabulous swing, Ainsley gets great naps and Mama gets some chores done (or a nap). Whoever invented the swing is a genius. Seriously. Now I have to go take care of a non-napping baby.

Thursday, May 01, 2008



Ainsley loves Maleficent. It was my idea to put the dragon in the crib, since she wouldn't know to be scared of it if we simply started her out with it. Whenever we put her in for changing and swaddling, she will stare at the dragon like this. Its pretty cute. Oh yes, and lets not forget that Ainsley's heart belongs to Grandma.
Cheers

Saturday, April 26, 2008

More "Whoa!"