Emily and Erin are 9 months old! I have yet to get a picture of them with the "9" stickers on their chest. This is for a few reasons: I put off laundry this week so we didn't really have anything cute clean, we've had lots of appointments and work, and it's just hard to get them to be still and pose for a picture. I know, I know. I'll do it tomorrow (well, today for most of you reading this, probably!) along with a whole lot of other things that need doing. I love having these month by month shots, so any effort is well worth it!
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On a sadder note, Dan's grandpa passed away this week. I'm so glad he had a chance to meet Emily and Erin this past summer. We were very blessed to have the time with him that we did. It's hard to think about our time on earth as temporary, and to realize that we do not know the number of days we have with those we love and care about. There are so many sayings to this effect: "live every day as if it were your last", "live as if there were no tomorrow", and the current favorite, YOLO. That last one isn't my favorite, for obvious reasons, but it's a good point. We miss you, Grandpa Sam, and we know you're smiling down on us.
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I haven't watched much TV lately, which is a switch from the past year. I spent most of my pregnancy with activity limits, so I found myself on the couch watching TV a lot. I don't know that it was a bad thing - I learned a ton about cooking! - but it wasn't a good habit. I don't like feeling as though the TV is always on and a part of everyday life. Emily and Erin love to watch "Sesame Street" and other toddler shows, so it's fun to treat them sometimes when I really need to keep them in one place (see #4). This change is certainly for the better overall, but it's still fun to relax (um, collapse) and watch TV. I just don't do it very often anymore!
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Erin and Emily are constantly on the move these days. If they're on the floor, they are crawling and exploring the house. If they are sitting in their high chairs, they're smacking the trays and trying to stand. If they're anywhere near a shelf or the coffee table, they're pulling themselves up to get things that look interesting. Their favorite pull-up spot is the edge of the bathtub - it must be just the right height. They stand and stare at the baby tub or at sister splashing in the bath. The bathmat is a terrible landing area, though, so I'm careful with that one. Hey, at least I know my girls love bathtime!
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We got a baby gate this week, which has completely changed our life. Okay, that might be a bit of an exaggeration, but...maybe not! Knowing that Emily and Erin are confined to one part of the house, without the aid of furniture, is pretty awesome. Cooking still makes me nervous, so I try to make sure they're in their high chairs when I'm making dinner. Trying to keep your kids safe is definitely a full time job once they get moving on their own!
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I'm really bummed about Google Reader going away, but I just downloaded the Bloglovin' app and I'm pretty happy so far. It sends me a summary email of all new blog posts every night, and it let me import all of the awesome blogs I was following through Google! I need to add Bloglovin' to my blog - after we do the 9 month picture tomorrow. Priorities!
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I'm still very much in awe of Pope Francis' humility. I never imagined a pope, or even a bishop, who would travel by public bus and eschew the finer things that come with such a position. Growing up, I occasionally took the bus. We live in a smaller city, and I grew up in a walkable neighborhood, so we walked a lot. I tended to avoid the bus because of inconvenience - unless it was really raining hard, it was often faster to walk. When I moved to Portland for my first year of college, I didn't have a car and I took the bus all the time, to all kinds of places. I know many people, however, who have hardly ever (or never!) taken the bus and really look down on it. Obviously, in many other countries, access to private transportation is much more limited, but taking the bus is still a mark of a humble man. Truly humbling ourselves to live as God wills us to is an important step of a Christian life - we are very blessed to have such a wonderful example in Pope Francis.