Saturday, November 26, 2011

Thanksgiving Adventures

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving. Erick's mom came to spend the holiday with us, and enjoyed the perfect balance of relaxation and excitement.

This is our second year in St. Louis for Thanksgiving, but our first trip to the downtown Thanksgiving Parade. It was a chilly and windy morning, and we did wait for quite a while for the parade to begin.


But it was quickly worth the wait. Sophia waved at everyone as they passed.


And she got up close with several of the parade participants. All in all, it was a great parade morning.


Our second and most exciting adventure was last night when we went to see Mamma Mia at the Fabulous Fox Theatre. We had bought tickets for Mary's birthday in October, so we've been looking forward to this for a while.


Sophia just loves getting dressed up for a big evening out. She was sweet and excited and so much fun to see the show with.


We all followed Sophia's cue and got fancy for our night at the theatre.


At the end of the show, everyone was on their feet, and Sophia was dancing in the aisle - once she caught her breath from the excitement.


It has been a wonderful start to our holiday. I spent the day today not feeling too great, but we still managed to get our decorations up before I took a nap. I can't wait to see what the rest of the season has in store for us!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Baby Jesus

It's time for my annual post on Sophia's love of the nativity set. Every year, I am surprised at how much she loves it. A couple of weeks ago, we brought back our Christmas stuff from Mary's house. I told Sophia she could pick one thing to keep out until after Thanksgiving when we'll put everything up. Being the quickster she is, she first chose the tree... So once I had told her that was a no go, she chose the nativity set.

I bought this nativity set the year Sophia was born - maybe. I don't remember for sure. What I do remember is that it was the five dollar kind. Just one to tide us over until we could afford a nicer one more suited to my taste. Now I can't imagine replacing it.

Each year, Sophia loves playing with the people and the animals. Usually at the window.

This year, before she put it in the window, she played with it in her room. Joseph got to take a ride on a Zhu Zhu wagon. That would have been a much better way to get to Bethlehem...


Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Climbing Trees

It seems like for weeks, I've been saying, "This is probably the last nice day that we'll have, so we better go outside." If I bothered to check a forecast, I might have known that we would have one of the most continuous and pleasant falls that I can remember in recent history.

A couple of weeks ago, Sophia had a friend over for a play date. One of the things her friend wanted to do was to climb trees in the park where Sophia had her birthday party. Sophia has never climbed trees there before, or anywhere else for that matter. She would never climb the tree in our front yard in Columbia even when her cousins were nearly at the top.

Because she had never done it before, she wasn't dressed quite like a climber. The tutu and sparkly hat impaired her skills just a smidge, but she had a blast. Most importantly, she was incredibly proud of herself for trying something new and conquering a fear.


We have been back a couple of times because Sophia had so much fun. She gets higher and more confident every time. One of my absolute favorite activities as a kid was climbing trees. My legs were never without a scrape or a bruise. I have to admit that I actually had a tear when Sophia got her first scrape. Maybe that's because she didn't whine about it. Hard to say.


Now when we head to climb trees, Sophia dresses like a climber. A fancy climber, yes. But a climber.

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Friday, November 11, 2011


It's been an uncharacteristically long time since my last post. I keep starting posts about the fact that it's been almost a year since we've been in St. Louis. Each post has been different and each one is unfinished.

Maybe if I keep it short, rather than comprehensive, I can get one published. In just four days, it will be an entire year since we moved into this apartment. That feels weird on many levels. A year is a long time, but it's still only an eighth of the time we lived and invested in Columbia.

We miss our friends. All three of us miss them. We miss our house, mostly because, as Sophia says, "It was so close to the boysies." I think I may have mentioned this before, but there are definitely days that I wish I were in Columbia, but, so far, I haven't wished that I lived there again. That's not to say I won't have that feeling in the future, but I'm happy to hold onto my contentment for now.

We love our friends in St. Louis. I'm grateful every day for the relative ease of this transition for all of us. Erick loves his job. I love the possibilities in St. Louis. I love the food and the walks.

Sophia loves her school, the parks, her friends. Everything that matters to her about St. Louis is a win.

A year later. Sophia, Erick and I have all grown and changed individually. Our relationships to each other have changed, too, as outside dynamics shift. A year later, and I can still say with absolute certainty that my favorite thing in life is the three of us - together.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Feeling Words

One of my favorite things about Sophia is that she is not afraid to express how she is feeling. Another of my favorite things is how those expressions are described in her words.

A common feeling that she described a while back was "scooped." Because of when and how she used it, I could only guess that she was referring to feeling disappointed or misunderstood. Scooped.

Last night, Sophia and I had another conversation that revealed more of how and what she feels. As she got ready for bed, Sophia told me about something that happened at school. A friend of hers told another friend to go away. She was confused and felt uncertain about what she should do. After we had talked it through, I told her that I was sorry she had felt uncomfortable at school. She responded with "Yeah. Sometimes when I feel that way, my brain gets salty." Oh yeah? "And when I'm happy, there are rainbows right here," pointing between her eyes. "When I'm sad, it's rainy in there, and when I'm angry, there's thunder." She was quiet for a while, and we continued getting her into bed. She decided she wasn't sure that her brain really did those things after all. I told her that since she and I had never seen inside our brains, it might very well be what happens. She brightened up with, "Maybe we each have our own language with our brains. That's my language, and I just forgot it!"

I just love the way Sophia talks about her feelings. She knows just how to describe it, even when she's not quite sure what to do with it. I get all kinds of rainbows when I think about the person she's becoming. Maybe a little salty too.