Friday, October 29, 2010

Obsessed much? You could call it "passion"

I mentioned in some previous entries that I've felt very inspired lately and like I'm ready to tackle several projects.  [Mind you, whenever I start posting about my own ideas, I feel I'm venturing away from the main focus of this blog (Mia), but other events going on in the family have their place here too, right??]

One of those ideas was to host a cloth diaper demo at my house for some of the expectant mamas at my church or in my greater circle of friends.  I recognize to the rest of the world, this may not sound very exciting, but I've gotten to that stage in life where things thought to be previously weird are no longer.  (What was once also in this category included things like cookie sheets & KitchenAid mixers.  I believe I scoffed at a certain "spiritual comrade" when she received such items at a bridal shower.  Never again.  Lesson learned.)

Moving on...I've put my feelers out, gotten a semi-rousing response, and am moving forward.  Later in November on a Saturday afternoon, Lord Willing, I shall have this cloth diaper demo!  I've invited someone who actually runs her own business to really help in this and her name is Angela.  On Facebook, a friend jokingly asked if I could webcast this demo for her.  Oh, if only...I mean, I'm sure I actually have some of the technology to get that going, but we're still very grass-roots over here.

Milk Pail
And in terms of another project, we begin tonight: painting!  The prep and priming will start tonight, and hopefully the painting tomorrow.  First room will be the front room.  Can't wait to see the finished product!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Late October

Things have felt busy around here.  It's a good busy, where I'm thankful to be productive and have so many good things going on.

Halloween is just a week away and Mia--if she'll tolerate wearing a costume--will be Little Red Riding Hood.  We just got the costume in the mail today from my mom; she found a pattern and sewed it herself!  It looks quite cute and will probably be something Mia can grow with too.

October 2009
I found Mia a Halloween onesie and pants to wear during October.  She wore the outfit around the house on Friday and it was super cute and reminded me of just last year when she was a cute, sorta cuddly 6 month old wearing Halloween onesies!  The front of the shirt, which is not pictured, says, "Daddy's under my spell."  SO true.

contentedly snoozing October 2010
I share this other picture just because I was sort of proud of myself.  We've been eating sort of helter-skelter the last few weeks.  I'm still on my modified diet and have gotten myself back on track after a few weeks of minor cheats building up, so this week I wanted to do a bit better.  Friday night, we had roasted free-range chicken, squash & zucchini splashed with coconut oil, milk, maple syrup, and salt & pepper (which Mia loved!), and sweet potato with coconut oil or butter & cinnamon.  Yum!  It felt like a good fall meal, and Mia had a bit of everything.

more squash & zucchini, please!
Sometimes it is hard to find meals where Mia is genuinely interested in everything we place before her, so it's nice when I can just give her something good, healthy and home-cooked and I don't have to worry about a single substitution!  To that end though, Mia seems to have a healthy appetite and I'm very happy to say she loves guacamole.  Guess what Mia, we do too...we do too.

And then unrelated, last weekend we had a special celebration for my sister-in-law Amanda, who is having baby #2 (a girl to be named Abby) in January.  Some of us girls got together and had a "sprinkle" (code for a low-key, casual baby shower) at Cheesecake Factory.  Even though the event was for Amanda, I think all of us had as much fun as she did, and my Godiva Chocolate Cheesecake splurge was worth the cheat.  Yum!
Even though I love being at home with my husband & Mia at night, it is so refreshing to spend a night out with girlfriends every now and then.  It's just good for the soul, and I'm very thankful for these gals.

For now, Greg & I are going to be old fogies and finish the movie (Robin Hood) we couldn't last night thanks to S.F.O., also known as sudden fatigue onset and eat some grain-free brownies.  With good food like that, a "restricted" diet ain't so bad.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Caught! on Camera: Mia Plays & Sings

Pause the audio player to the right before viewing.

Mia Plays & Sings from Megan Ciampa on Vimeo.
Enjoying a new toy so much, she just had to sing about it!

Thursday, October 21, 2010


Sometimes the most unexpected days are the best days.

Today I really only had two goals:

  • Get my items to be consigned dropped off.
  • Be at the consignment sale at 4pm when the special presale began for select customers (volunteers & consignors)

I was so excitably nervous all day about this consignment sale.  Silly stuff, right?  But one of my mom friends compared it to Black Friday--wanting to make sure you get all the special deals before they run out. And I had a lot on my wishlist for Mia.

I wasn't so sure about my intentions beforehand though; I had to wake up a sleeping Mia in order to get there just after 4, and I really didn't want to do that.  She's been napping great lately and I hate to cut a nap short just so I can shop.

However, Greg & I switched cars today because he needed the Pilot for a bit more storage for his annual pep rally gig, and as soon as I woke Mia up and walked to the Golf, she got pretty excited about an adventure in a different car and started kicking her legs.

Anyway, the sale was a success--for us, for now.  And afterwards, on a whim, I called my friend who lives in the area and we grabbed dinner together, which gave us a nice opportunity to catch up.  And then, when Mia & I got home, we just played with some of our new toys.
How you like my new wheels?

Trying on some new shoes while figuring out the MegaBlocks
We did the bath and bedtime routine and afterwards I had a few moments of downtime, for the first time all day, just to chill.

When I got online, I immediately saw a posting by a friend about the Matthews family, who live in Florida and have a little son with neuroblastoma.  I've already felt quite emotional this week; it's been a heavy week--in a good way--lots of excitement and opportunity mixed with sadness, and this just tugged on my heartstrings even more.  And then I read Kelle Hampton's blog, which is one of my very favorites and from whom I steal many a music inspiration, and it was like she was reading my mind...

Just earlier today I was thinking that at some point I should find those awful diaries I kept when I was a preteen and teenager, and reread them when I'm ready to face how ridiculous I was, so that when the time comes, I'll be able to better relate to things Mia may eventually go through.  And hopefully through it all, I'll be able to celebrate with her who she is.  Not an all-things-are-good-and-I'm-gonna-pretend-there's-no-room-for-improvement sort of thing, but more like a, this-is-how-God-made-you, and He is pleased with it.  And so am I.  And why do things just stink sometimes? I don't know, but we'll make it through.  And if we don't, then we'll die, and we'll go to Heaven, and then it'll be really, really great.

So, to bring it on home, I've just really been enjoying the little things with Mia, seeing her light up, learn new words, hug, blow kisses, and be our little companion, and sometimes when it seems one's heart couldn't possibly burst anymore, it just does.  And I know this blog went from straightforward to emotionally serious in just a matter of paragraphs, but that's sometimes just how life goes.  It feels like you're just going through the motions, until you realize you're nurturing a little soul who watches your every move and copies you--oft times not to your liking--and you think, "Woah, this is heavy.  This isn't just about me anymore."  So I think that's how I got there.  I had these plans and these goals for today, but in the end, what was more important was how I took care of my little daughter.  And we had a good time, and I'm trying to be a better momma, so, I think we're in a good spot for now.

And I loooove to hear Mia sing.  I must get more video of that.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Things that make you go hmm...

As I've alluded to before, we often get things in the mail that are clearly marketed towards the parents of a young one, but today I stopped in my tracks upon receiving the American Girl October 2010 catalog.  I could barely believe my eyes.

This is the stuff I used to salivate over almost every year from age 7 to *gulp* age 12.  They had only 3 dolls when I first got into it: Kristen, the Scandinavian pioneer who immigrated to Minnesota; Samantha, the Victorian 'princess;' and Molly, the daughter of a WWII soldier.  My neighbors had two of the aforementioned, and I received Felicity, the redheaded colonial girl who grew up in Virginia.  It's astounding what I still remember from these books, but I read them over and over again and probably used the historical fiction to fill in any gaps I ever received in my history education.

Felicity in her "holiday gown" & "cardinal cloak"

It makes me excited to think that Lord Willing I might be able to share these fun things with Mia someday. My parents/Santa Claus (now, who was who???) were gracious in gifting me many a thing from Felicity's collection back in the day, and I hope we can share this with Mia too.
Coincidentally, I had just been thinking about American Girl earlier today and how it really fueled my imagination.  I hope for Mia that she doesn't get so bogged down by media, pop culture and societal ridiculousness that she doesn't have the chance to just imagine, play and pretend, like little ones ought to.

And now I feel really ready to get ready for the holidays!
Wow, who would've thought one American Girl catalog could do that?!

Huge AG nerd, signing off.

PS: For an awful night of sleep, Mia, you did well this afternoon with a 3 hr nap!  Yay!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Lil' Mia = Lil' Helper

I guess I shant be that surprised; Mia's always been observant.  But she loves helping me in so many tasks now.  Or thinking she's helping me.  I'm pretty sure when she's just a bit older, she really will be a big help, and I'm very thankful for that. (I know I wasn't always the biggest help to my mom!! *ornery squirt*)

From time to time, we now get children's catalogs most likely from signing up for something online, because I am pretty certain I didn't register for One Step Ahead or Hanna Andersson, but some of the catalogs we do get have some cute things.  I think I may have found the perfect holiday gift for Mia in the most recent One Step Ahead catalog:

Dyson Upright VacuumLeaps And Bounds Kids
We have the real version of this vacuum cleaner so I know Mia would love it!  She recently saw me using the hose attachment to pick up dust bunnies underneath small spaces, and took it upon herself to find a roll of unopened wrapping paper, and began using that as her own vacuum hose attachment!  She walked around the hose "vacuuming".  It says it's for 3+, but Mia never takes age suggestions into account.  She'll push around anything.

New words for Mia this week:
no (it sounds really cute but could quickly turn dangerous)

and I know I'm forgetting some others.  That bambina!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Mia loves her [1st] cousins [once-removed]

Today Mia had a golden opportunity to spend time some quality cousins at the golden arches.  Greg's uncle and his 3 boys were in town to see the last Rays game and for some diversion, Mia & I met them at a nearby fast food joint.  Within minutes of seeing her cousins, she was giggling and making funny noises. Mia loved Cousin B and would follow him around & tap him on the back if he happened to roam.  "Hey! Did you forget about me!?? Let's keep playing!"  Cousins R & G were pretty glued to this computer game though, and that's where Mia decided to join in on the fun.

"If you touch the screen you get points!"

"Sweet, I can do this too!" (Mia helping Cousin B)

loving the camaraderie

very invested

This primary color influenced post was brought to you by the letter K.

Friday, October 8, 2010

The Zoo

Mia is an expert dog spotter. Just listen for a "dah!" and you can be sure one of the neighbor's standard poodles is strolling by. She knows cats and every once in a while recognizes birds. We thought it was time to take it up a notch and introduce her to more animals at the zoo. This was Mia's first visit to the zoo. Here are the highlights:

Rhinos running

Mia scoping out the rhinos from her perch on daddy's shoulder
In this picture you can see Mia's preferred mode of transportation while we were there.  Being carried only by me!  She was not interested in the perfectly good stroller we had nor her God given ability to walk (still sore today).

Next we moved on to see a cage with little orange monkeys and a rooster.  Not sure what the rooster was doing in there.  Maybe he was keeping the peace.

The Africa section was probably the coolest.  We got an education on duikers (looked like miniature deer) and kudu (another antelope type).


Mia got a close up look at a giraffe before we headed for home.  It was good time and hopefully we can go back and check it out more as she gets older.  If you were to ask Mia what was her favorite animal was, she would tell you other children visiting the zoo.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Nah-STALL-JEE-uh. Or Nostalgic Thoughts.

3 weeks old in her little Iguana preemie onesie!
Anytime a good friend of mine has a baby, I am inundated with my own memories of experiences that really weren't so long ago.  I feel like I remember so much and yet I know I have forgotten quite a bit too.  Even though there were times I'd rather not repeat when we first had Mia, there are also times I have a bittersweet attachment to.  Even times at the hospital.  There was such a centering effect after having her--not a whole lot else mattered anymore but our family.  And for the first few months, there was really nothing more important to do than getting sleep and being fed--for the both of us.  It was such an opposite from my life before: running here, running there, doing this or that, and feeling pressed for time ALL the time.  My calendar basically went from way entirely too full to empty.  It was strange to me, but also welcome at the same time.

Of course by now we've struck a new balance, which tends to change every now and then as Mia goes through various growth spurts and transitions, but I can't help but wonder what it would feel like again to someday have that newborn and think...for right now, this is ALL I have to take care of.  I often dread the sleepless times, but I remember: those did pass.  And I wonder how people do it with more than one child, but history has shown me people have done this for thousands and thousands of years. 

However, for now, we are enjoying our family of 3 and our rambunctious, brave, excitable little one.  As far as we know, we're not quite ready to change up the mix.  In [God's] time, and hopefully at a healthier time for me, we will.  (Was that a clear disclaimer?!)

In other ways of nostalgia...I'm very nostalgic for this group at the moment:
LH, Ro-o-ose, Meganesota, & JennGa circa 2003 @ the Dickey household

I feel like if we were to reconvene just as we are, we'd still have a million things to talk about, even though we all live in different parts of the country (or, for LH, "everywhere" ;) ) and are doing and pursuing different things.

There's something about good friends and good times for which I'm really thankful.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have a very messy, klutzy, and tired baby to try to put down for a nap.