Thursday, February 28, 2008


What amazes me is... is a boy who's so chubby...
so flexible?

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Jack Attack!

While I was changing Matteas one morning(which took some time, as he blasted out of his diaper and required a bath) Jack was playing nicely at the table with his cars. Or so I thought. After I got Matteas dressed I checked on Jack to discover that he had found a cube of butter and used it to embellish his cars. I told him to load them all into the bathroom sink and wait for me to help him clean them. Getting impatient, he decided to use cold water and diaper wipes, which he loaded into the toilet as he was done with them. About ten of them. This was about two weeks ago. Matteas had a weird night, and I got about four hours of sleep. When I put him down for his nap I got really drowsy and thought to myself: the door is locked, no candles are burning; whatever Jack does while I'm dozing, it's worth it. I was mistaken. I have yet to put the final coat of paint on the cabinets that go under the kitchen sink, leaving my cleaning supplies exposed(no one freak out, I don't keep any bleach products with the amonia ones). Jack proceeded to gather and empty almost every bottle, including one of Murphy's Oil Soap, Pine-Sol, and just to top it off, a bottle of Burt's Bee's Baby Oil(which is great stuff, but only if it's in your bath and not on your bathroom rug). He was also not wearing a diaper for some reason. It took hours of soaking in the tub to get all the soap out of the rug. I would have just thrown it away, but it was Karoly's. This morning's escapade: a re-enactment of the bombing of Pearl Harbor, using flour instead of bombs. Lots of flour. I now feel more strongly than ever that it is a serious mistake to tile a kitchen floor. F***ing grout. Thank you God for diaper wipes. And Starbucks drive-throughs. I still haven't cleaned out the baby swing. I'm feeling pretty frustrated right now over how freaking messy motherhood is. Or childhood, rather. Jack is so lightning-fast when it comes to messes, by the time I clean up one he's made three more. I was beginning to feel that I might be able to entertain the possibility of starting a hobby or, more distantly, go back to school; I don't have a specific goal in mind, I'm just feeling like everything other than the mother part of me is beginning to atrophy. I realize that being a mom is deeply significant and wonderful and all that, but sometimes, most of the time, it's also really damn hard. And there are things I want aside from being a mom. Not instead, just additionally. I'm not disdaining motherhood; my desires are actually biblically based, like the woman in Proverbs 31 who somehow finds time to "seeketh wool and flax, buy fields and plant vineyards, maketh fine linen, clothe her household in garments of scarlet, layeth her hands to the spindle while holding a distaff and girdeth her loins with strength." I can't even girdeth my loins with pants most of the time. What I'd like to know is, where are the Proverbial Woman's children while she's doing all this planting and girding? Surely I say unto you, her children shall scatter flour to the four corners of her household and poop in their shoes; they shall smear their toys with butter and clog the plumbing with diaper wipes; in the midst of the chaos they shall use toilet water to wash the fireplace; they shall daily strip the couches of every cushion, and pee on the carpet almost hourly. Blessed are the mothers, for they sorely need it.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Congratulations Ambry and Shane!

Mattea Brielle Maria Chester was born on Friday, February 22nd at 11:32 p.m. 8 lbs. 10 oz. 19 1/2 inches Ambry's labor began around 10 a.m. Friday morning. She labored at home until around six in the evening, when she checked into the birth center. She had a drug-free labor and returned home a few hours after delivering Mattea, who is chubby and sweet with a peaceful disposition and is a confident and capable nurser. Mom, Dad and Baby are all doing well and have been visited by lots of friends and family. Matteas and I visited this afternoon and brought mimosas, blueberry scones and chocolate-covered strawberries to celebrate.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Valentine's Day...and then some

I am the lucky sort of wife whose husband comes home with not one, but two ginormous bouquets of roses for Valentine's Day; actually, he came home with two ginormous bouquets of roses the day before Valentine's Day because he figured he'd have a better selection a day in advance. When I giddily asked Aaron why he brought me two bouquets, he said "I wanted you to have them both." Sweet husband...Jack was very excited about decorating, so we did up the mantle and made a Love Tree out of our latest Goodwill find, a metal tree from Hallmark which will serve as our future Jesse Tree. We will probably also decorate it with eggs for Easter, given Jack's love of seasonal decor.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

February 5th, 2005

February 5th was our third wedding anniversary. Jack spent the night at Grandma's house, Aaron came home from work early, and we got lobster juice and chocolate frosting everywhere. I love this picture of Aaron; I think his eyelashes are so cute. And his sideburns.
I made a cake for dessert that was a miniature version of our wedding cake, only I made it with chocolate frosting. It was a recipe from Cook's Illustrated, a Christmas present from Tristan that is quickly becoming one of my favorite resources.
Trudy Wheeler(Briana's Mother-in-law) made our wedding cake. I sent her a picture of a white cake with rose petals on it, and this is what showed up at our wedding. It doesn't look very big in the picture, but it was at least two feet high. Amazingly, it was not only stunning to look at but it was also the most delicious cake I've ever had. People called me after our wedding to ask if they could have some of the leftovers. The top part never made it to the freezer for our first anniversary.
With a small nursing baby, dates are sort of out of the question. So to keep things exciting we do date nights at home, and for special occasions we have just one rule: we cook something together that neither of us has made before. Inspired by Central Market, we chose lobster. She weighed almost three pounds and was thrashing around vigorously when removed from her tank, flapping her tail so loudly it sounded like someone slapping two pieces of wood together. We were a little afraid to try stuffing her into our biggest pot as she seemed too long for it, and it seemed wise not to anger her unless she was going to perish in a timely fashion. The idea of being chased around the kitchen by an angry, red-hot lobster seemed like it would spoil the romance. Aaron came up with the idea of using our next-biggest pot as the lid, which worked beautifully save for the fact that it dripped lobster juices all over the stove. She was delicious.
Since we were sharing the lobster we thought we should round out our meal a bit so we made Steak au Poivre, roasted new potatoes and French green beans sauteed with shallots.
Here is my miniature wedding cake with chocolate frosting. I thought white frosting would have been prettier with the red roses, but once I put it all together I think the brown and red are a pretty swell combination. It was very, very good. The first ingredient the frosting recipe called for was 2 1/2 sticks of butter.
I thought the inside was pretty too.