Technically the gals turned 5 months on August 28. So this may not be the most timely of posts, but I wanted to share the results of my little photoshoot with them (I’m going to eventually have a photo book of their monthly photos). I have zero photography skills and usually end up using my iPhone, so I’m lucky my subjects are adorable.
Recently, our doctor told us it was time to start feeding the gals some rice cereal, to let them practice eating from a spoon and start them off on a solid least-likely to cause an allergic reaction (food allergies may be an issue with Claire’s spina bifida). Claire, who is already our happiest eater when it comes to bottles, took to the rice cereal immediately. Etta seemed to think we had devised a fun new way to kill her. The results were pretty funny:
And for my friend Stacy who said Etta needed to be a meme:
I have literally thousands of photos on my iPhone at any given moment. It’s become second nature to use it to constantly document my life as I go about my day– the sweet, the surprising, the routine, the beautiful–it all gets snapped. And a tiny fraction of those photos gets sent through what is probably my most favorite app: Instagram, where photos are cropped into squares, run through filters that mimic the look of old-fashioned film, and shared on a timeline among similar photos from all of my friends.
I know it might seem silly to say this about an app, but Instagram literally makes my life better. I’ve said it before when talking to fans who also love the app, but I feel that going through my day, looking for moments to Instagram, forces me to be more aware of the beauty and amazement all around me. And being able to see similar moments shared by people I care about? Super special.
It’s why I mostly loved this piece on Huffington Post from another mom about how Instagram serves as sort of a light in the midst of a lot of the difficulties of parenting. However, the author feels like the filter of Instagram– both the literal filters of the film and the way we each filter what we decide to share– necessitates a kind of confessional, a disclaimer that her life isn’t always as pretty as it may appear onscreen. I guess I’m just not sure that’s necessary. After all, and I’m only half-joking, isn’t the sharing what’s hard what Twitter is for?
I don’t think I or my friends are somehow being false or one-sided by choosing to mostly share beauty and interest and humor through our Instagram feeds. Instead, we’re looking on the bright side of life. Heck, sometimes we’re clinging to it. And that’s OK. It’s necessary, even, in a world where we have dozens of outlets that give us negativity and bad news, to have one that focuses on the good and beautiful.
All photos above from my Instagram feed, where you will find me as erniebufflo.
Last week, Jon and I took a little vacation that I’ve been jokingly calling our Baby Moon, because it’s likely the last vacation we’ll ever take, just the two of us. We went to Charleston, SC, where we lived for the 3 years of Jon’s residency, to visit friends and favorite places and just relax. It was perfect. Those who know me well know I’m crazy about food, and we basically planned our whole trip around what we’d eat, when, matching up people we wanted to see with places we wanted to eat. We ate SO GOOD. And our spirits were fed as well when reconnecting with people we love.
It’s hard to put a finger on exactly why we love Charleston. In some ways, it’s obvious– great food, great beauty, the beach. But in other ways, I think it’s because it’s where we went and struggled and survived on our own as a married couple for the first time. Jon worked crazy hours. I worked jobs I sometimes hated. We didn’t know anyone. I hated it at first. And then we thrived, and for that, it will always be a special place. Here are some highlights from a fabulous trip*:
Because my reading list is massive…
And because I’m apparently an old fogey at the ripe old age of 26… I now have these:
Luckily my reading buddy looks like this:
Friday I spent the entire day in the kitchen preparing food to serve to our homeless neighbors under the Broadway Bridge. While I was cooking, Jon picked up McKinley and took him to get his CDL renewed, FINALLY! Glory, hallelujah, what a hassle, but now he can finally find a job.
That night we served delicious Italian food to a robust crowd, and I also contributed cupcakes as it was our friend John’s birthday. I discovered (by way of the blogosphere), the best way ever to top a cupcake: toasted marshmallows. Way less hassle than frosting. Just pop a marshmallow on top of each of your baked cupcakes and put them back in the 350 degree oven for about 5 minutes. Then pull them out and gently smoosh each marshmallow down over the cupcakes. If you really want the toasty marshmallow flavor, broil them, but keep an eye out not to burn them.
Saturday was GLORIOUS. We went for a little bike ride around the neighborhood to enjoy the cloudless, 70 degree day. It was my first ride with the new panniers I got for my birthday. I call them my “bike trunk.”