*11 months!

Vera is almost 1! I can't believe it. She is seriously the most precious, amazing thing that we could have imagined. I love peeking in on her as she plays by herself. Like pulling her books off the shelf, flipping through them one by one and pointing things out to herself - I just love to watch her little determined expressions, so purposeful. Every day it seems something new clicks in her little developing brain. The other day she crawled right over to the rocking chair stool, flipped it over and climbed in. Later she flipped it over again and put a stuffed animal in and gave it a ride around the carpet. Learning to put objects in another is apparently some sort of milestone and the other day she sat for 10 minutes putting a plastic bag in a jar, taking it out and doing it over again. These might not seem all that exciting, but it's fascinating when you see your own little one learning all these little skills for the first time. Oh we love it and we love our little snap-pea more and more and more.



The other day I thought it would be fun to fill Vera's cute little tray with some different foods. I thought she could move the apricots to another slot or something, but she wasn't too interested in the organizational aspect:


*little cutie

We've been taking videos like crazy lately. Here's a couple...

...:trying on her [broken] sunglasses. a little long, but really cute:...

...:learning to drink from a cup. lest you think she's mastered it, the very next try she missed her mouth and dumped it down her front:...


*a good weekend

saturday purge - felt so good:

still in her sunday dress, exploring our neighbor's shady garden:

not pictured:

*a beautiful hike up mill creek, dreaming about our some-day cabin in the woods.

*a lovely dinner out, just the two of us. our neighbor stayed with vera who went down for bed without nursing and without a whimper [this was the first time since she was 8 weeks old someone else put her to bed!!].


*that's my girl!




Sam and Amelia [and their momma of course] have come to be some of our most favorite friends. It's been so neat to see them all develop and grow - each at their own little pace. We met them bright and early at the Gardens this morning and had great time exploring. Looking forward to lots more summer memories...

¿Have I mentioned that Vera likes to stick her tongue out?



Ben just took Vera to the park for an hour and a half. I can't tell you how nice that is and how much I got done. Anyway, I was going through things and found this little scrap of paper from last year. To be honest, teaching Middle School was one of the most trying things I've ever done or maybe ever will. Things like this though made it [kind of] worth it:

*Ben reports that at the park they had a snowcone which Vera thought was amazing. They also walked through the sprinklers at the playground and she took 13 steps which is her new record.


*tres pasitos

still working on it:


*and a river runs through it

Salt Lake is growing on us, but I don't think we'll ever get over Missoula. Of course it wasn't perfect - a bit isolated, in the midst of bear country [if you know me at all...], and far away from family - but by the end we were pretty devastated at the thought of leaving. It's just such a one-of-a-kind place. I miss riding my bike everywhere, I miss walking down the street and knowing the people I see, I miss the Good Food Store, Scotty's Table and baguettes from Le Petite Outre. I miss our tree-lined street, I miss running along the Clark Fork...

I miss our friends. such good friends:

I miss our cute little [money pit-of-a] house:

I miss the rivers:

I miss all the dog-friendly [you can't take your dog anywhere here!] hiking trails within minutes of town:

..and yes it's a little silly, but I miss my old stove that didn't work well which didn't matter because it was so cute:

oh and I miss my green kitchen too:


*i'm your daddy!

That's what Ben has told Vera since she was a wee little one in-utero. When he and I were just getting to know one another, I could tell that one day he'd be an amazing dad. It's really one of the best things ever to watch him with little V - to see how much he loves her and how much he cares - it makes my heart swell. She's starting to say Dada and mean it :: it's so amazing and wonderful to hear her call out for him and to see the little smile creep onto her face when he comes in. Happy Father's Day Ben!!!!! I love you and so does your little girl.

It was hard to choose, but here's some of my favorite pictures of daddy/daughter:

[this one was when we got home from CA - she was just 3 months old - old enough to be excited to see daddy!]


*big news

Vera took two little steps tonight!  She was trying to get our friend's cat to say hi to bunny and couldn't quite reach.  We'll see if she does it again - it'll be by accident when she doesn't realize she's not holding on to something.

That's all.



*red butte gardens

It rained hard in the morning yesterday which clearedthe way for an amazing afternoon [did you know we sometimes have the worst air quality in the country??]. The 3 of us went up to Red Butte Gardens - acres and acres of hiking trails and ponds and beautiful greenery. The view of the valley and mountains was amazing. They have the sweetest little children's area with little houses made of vines and lily-ponds and a scent garden... Really, it is so amazing to just watch your little one exploring and feeling things out. Vera was quiet the whole time we were there, just taking everything in. She was hesitant to touch or smell anything until I had done it first. It was really sweet and I had the best time just holding her and watching her. Anyway, we got a membership [Jenny, we have to go!] so I'll take my camera and get some better pictures next time.


*itty bitty

I thought I'd post my favorite video of Vera. I've watched it a hundred times, it's so stinkin cute. Poor little thing gets all tuckered out - just 4 weeks old.

[..turn your sound up..]

[added later: have i done this before? i'm having deja vu]



My brother gave us free tickets to "Paddlefest" yesterday and so we discovered a beautiful little reservoir just 15 minutes from our house. I could not stop laughing at Vera in her life vest. She didn't know what to do and didn't make a peep/move the whole time.


Also, this weekend we finally got our vegetable garden planted. Ben built a cute little fence to keep Boone out using leftover wood from our neighbor's remodeling. We also cleaned up the flower beds and transplanted sod to even everything out. As Ben continues to remind me, "the yard's lookin' real good."


*in the kitchen

(another karate move)



I am really really into these clothes at speesees.com. Ben's sister gave Vera a couple little outfits at my shower and I was hooked. Well, hooked to looking and pining after them at least as I can't really afford to buy much. They just put out their new line though and I'll have to get at least something. They are so adorable and soft and unique. I saw their blog a bit ago and they said, 'send us pictures of your little speesees model!' So I did. Is that silly?

our little bead at just 5 weeks..:

i used this picture for her birth announcement..:

i love the yoga pants and t-shirts..:



I felt a little proud of myself today - making something quite yummy with what I had on hand. When this happens, I carefully choose the right color latte bowl [ok I always pay attention to the color sheme of food/bowl], take a picture and in this case try not to eat the whole batch before Ben comes home.

whole wheat penne
italian parsley
leftover chicken
green onion
olive oil
salt + pepper