under the weather

baby girl, when you feel poorly
just lay your head right here
i'll wipe your tears and kiss your cheeks
and keep you ever near

baby girl, when your temperature rises
and your cough comes in the night
just let me take care of you
and let me hold you tight

baby girl, when your eyes stop dancing
and your energy is gone
come snuggle in my lap a while
and let me be your mom


check it out

So I thought that created "pages/tabs" on my blog was going to be like having my wisdom teeth pulled and require many hours, and maybe even some pain medication.

Ends up, I was wrong.

So now I have some little tabs up there under my title. Get to clickin'!

Most of you have probably read "our story" that I wrote about Brent and me, but if you haven't that little link takes you there!

Also if you have no idea who I am or what I'm about, which I'm doubting is like one person who accidentally comes to my blog, you can click on the "about me" tab.

The one that says "why 'words that sing'" is to answer the question I've been asked regarding the title of this blog.

"blythe's story" is her birth story, all about how our sweet Blythe Kathleen joined our family and made us three.

And the last one, the "best of", this is where you come in! I need some of your suggestions, you see. I want to link up some favorite posts-- if one or two come to your mind, please leave a comment and I will link it up under that tab! It will be fun to see what people remember me writing about.

And that's all for today, as it is 7:30 and Brent and I have yet to eat because crock pot meals are not very convenient when you put them in the pot an hour before supper time. Whoops.


another day off

mom let me write a little yesterday on her blog, but i tricked her into thinking i didn't really know what i was doing- jokes on her now because here i am writing my first real blog post! boo-ya. at first she was like, "b, girl, people are gonna think it's weird," and i said "mama, cool it. people love me. i can do no wrong." so here i am.

i slept in until nine o'clock this morning. mom thinks i don't know what i'm doing, that it's just a fluke, but i really do like to sleep, people. i'm not crazy?! who doesn't like to sleep?! i just have to keep the baby thing up while i can and so i can't just be sleepin' in every morning, ya know. if i slept in every morning mom and dad would stop looking at me like a baby and then they might stop putting me in those super fuzzy jammies with feet, which would be terrible…i love those things! the butterfly on the butt is getting a little old, but i heard mom tell dad last night how cute it looked when i was crawling across the living room, so i'll let her keep putting me in them.

yep, you heard right…crawling. i'm crawling, people. what? you thought i would never do it? nah. i was just going backwards the past two months to tease everyone. i was just waiting for the element of surprise.

i have a pretty large list of tricks now too. daddy will hold me and ask if i trust him. that's when i let him know that i do and i throw myself backwards. he always catches me. but man, sometimes when he asks me that i'm just like, 'yeah, i do, but i don't really want to do it right now.' or muscles? i mean, yeah, i've got them, everyone does, but why does everyone ask me about them every five minutes?

i also feel like i'm getting older because i got a tooth now. well, sort of. the other night it woke me up and i kind of panicked and screamed because i didn't know what was going on. it was weird. i mean, do you guys remember when your teeth came in?! sheesh. but mom gave me this grape flavored medicine or something and daddy read to me for a little bit and then i went back to sleep. it's all good now, but i overheard mom say that i'm probably going to get more? seriously? i don't know about this growing up thing, but if it means i get to eat that food that mom and dad were eating last night then i guess i'm game for it.

speaking of eating, isn't it the best thing ever? i would eat all day if mom would let me but she always says, "all done" way too soon. i'm like, "mama, come on? just a few more peas? a little more turkey? a slice of bread?" and she hands me my sippy cup like water is supposed to make me forget i don't have any food left. she asked me the other day if i was ready to be done nursing. i don't think she likes it as much as i do. i'll tell ya this much, though, if she makes me stop nursing she better start putting something else in my cup besides water!

and another thing: this weekend i got to see my dog friend, elliot. she was great, until she'd get right in my face. i gave her the meanest look i could when she did that and then she'd waddle away. i'm getting faster crawling though so i'd chase her. that's when i heard mom say, "don't get any ideas, blythe." i'm not sure what that meant, but the only idea i got was that i want a puppy.

well peeps, when you've got fingers as little as mine typing is a lot of work. and besides, i think i'm gonna let mom know it's time to change my diaper again.

this is where i'm supposed to blow kisses, but i'm not sure i understand the purpose of that? it just makes me slobber all over myself.


day off

I'm taking today off from blogging and letting Blythe write something. I'm sure she has a pretty good imagination. Here is her story:

ndfsk jk vn            ?.   GCFVU  UU B        BNGCDFGGHHGGFFDJTY5R
REUDTYD    mwaG            2QBBWSZ33333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333333KLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLJ6 GYGHHHHTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTIZAQ11D`ADAD`s X


when some thing you never thought would happen, happens

My heart is about to explode.

But let me back up.

In 2008 Brent and I graduated from our colleges, finally got married, and then traversed hundreds of miles away to the big, scary city of Louisville, Kentucky. 

I was horrified at the thought of living in a city. I was lonely. I was scared. I was starting a new job. I was starting a new marriage. The friends I had spent four years pouring my life into in college were now scattered across the country like a tube of spilled glitter. 

This went on for quite some time. I cried many a tear. And then we played on a little co-ed softball team with some of the interns that Brent was getting to know, meaning I actually was going to get to SPEAK TO PEOPLE! It was excellent. After our first ball game, we were all sprawling on the grass, stretching or pretending like we were stretching so the others would actually think we used our muscles [ha! I fooled them]. That's when it happened: This girl who spelled her name with an extra "A" came over to me [she wasn't even going to go to the trouble of fake stretching…I liked her already]. 

"Hey," Meagan said "…" I don't know exactly what we talked about next but somewhere in there she said, "I know we haven't been married much longer than you guys but if you ever need to talk to someone when like, ya know, he leaves the shower curtain outside of the tub instead of inside or whatever, let me know." 

A week later I was driving home from school and Brent called, "Let's invite Meagan and Shane over for supper…tonight." My brain freaked out a little, thinking about figuring out what to make for supper and how to clean the apartment in the 2-3 hours I would have if we did invite them. But then, I thought about how lonely I had been in our little one bedroom apartment, how stressed work was, how big the city was, and I said, "Okay. Give them a call and let me know if it works." 

Two and half hours later, fettucini alfredo was on the table, with some sliced apples and apple dip and there was a knock at the door. In they walked, and though it may sound terribly cliche to say, our lives haven't been the same since. 

I pretended to ignore Shane picking the onions out of the pasta, and we talked and talked and realized how similar our hometowns were, how much we had in common. We talked about WWII, and books, and then we cleared the table and walked the three feet to the living room. We were going to watch a movie, but that never happened because we were too busy talking. I laughed until I cried that night.  At at one or two in the morning when they left, Brent and I knew we had found our "lifers." [I wrote about it the next day, because it made such an impact on me.]

Since then we have gone on vacations with them,  we helped them move from Louisville, then we said goodbye as they moved the Delaware and we moved back to Missouri. We've celebrated holidays with them, we've traveled many hours to see them, and played many, many a card game with them. We've sat, rather cozy, four across on one of our couches to watch a movie and share a bowl of popcorn. We've crashed their hotel rooms when they travel anywhere near us, and we've held back the tears [or not] as one of us has always had to drive away.

It's strange to realize we've only actually lived in the same place for a period of about a year, and half of that time was unfortunately wasted, not knowing the gold mine of friendship waiting for us on the other side of the city. 

We've grown accustomed to the distance, and it's amazing how it hasn't hindered a thing. We can go months without talking, just staying connected via blogs*, and a few texts here and there. And then one of us will get that aching feeling and we need to skype or do a marathon phone call.

We've always pestered the other about moving closer, or next door, or just moving in [though this could pose a little issue because Shane isn't sure about babies, though he is smitten with Blythe, and I'm not sure about dogs, though Elliot and I have an understanding]. 

That is why last fall when we got a phone from them, we weren't sure if we could actually believe them. They told us they were moving. This part was not a surprise as they move quite often [see above ;)], but then they told us where: the Kansas City area! They would be a little over an hour away, practically neighbors for all we cared, as Shane had taken a worship position at a church there. 

Last week they packed up their uhaul and drove and drove and drove. And now they are here. HERE! We thought it would never happen. I never wanted to live in Louisville, but it birthed several great friendships, and gave us Meagan and Shane forever. When we left we never thought we'd be able to just hop in the car and visit them for just a day. When we left we thought we were stuck with phone calls and long distance drives, and packed suitcase trips to maintain our friendship. 

God has a funny way of knowing what you need, exactly when you need it, does He not? 

And so tonight, I am going to make another little pasta dish for old time sakes, and we are going to hang out with our lifers that God dropped into our lives almost five years ago! 

Last July at their place in Kentucky [though Elliot, their dog, is not in the picture, you can see the love in Blythe's eyes as she looks at her]

*Meagan's blog HERE


under a street light in January

My last trip to Grandma Pat's house, partially for THIS project but mostly for her apple pie, resulted in a conversation about marriage. 

Not knowing much about her wedding, I asked her if she and Grandpa Bill had been married in a church in town, so others could come. She nearly guffawed at the thought of such extravagance. "Oh heavens no," she smirked as she gripped her now lukewarm coffee. I took another bite of my pie and she continued, "I didn't want lots of people there… I didn't really need anybody there. " 

She got married at a very, VERY simple ceremony, if one could even call it such. And that was that. 

She continued to sip her coffee and talk about how weddings were. "You know," she said, "nobody had big weddings. They got married by a minister but…nobody had big weddings. I think girls just want a big wedding and the rest of it…" she threw her hands in the air and shrugged, "if it doesn't work they just get a divorce."

I echoed my agreement, said something about how our culture has lost focus, saying girls are more concerned about being a bride and not a wife. She said, "That's exactly right." And then I sat back and listened to another wonderful story.

"I knew a girl, Imogene, who wanted the Presbyterian minister in town to marry her and John. But there was a three day waiting list to get their marriage license. Well they just went over to Kansas and got their license. They came back here to get married, and…well, I remember that January it was cold and the snow was up to here: Imogene had on four buckle overshoes with her long white dress. 

The minister couldn't marry them because they had to be in Kansas for him to sign the license. So they piled into his car, and drove over to Elwood, Kansas. 

He married them under a street light. 

They came back to town and the minister's wife had fixed a little supper for them and then they went home." 

I don't know about you, but I think that is just one of the most romantic, most beautiful wedding stories I've ever heard. I can just picture them, fresh flakes of dove white snow landing in Imogene's hair, John's frigid fingers clinging tightly to hers. I can see the preacher, his worn fedora shoved firmly over his graying hair, his hand clinging to a bible and a folded piece of paper. 

I can picture Imogene hiking up her white dress, tromping through the three feet of snow back to the car. I can see the preacher's wife, lovingly setting the celebratory table, steam pouring from the pot of soup in the center of the table. 

They couldn't wait three days to get their license because they wanted forever to start as soon as possible. Imogene didn't need a string quartet, fresh flowers, or an expensive photographer; Imogene needed John. 


because some of my best friends are from books

 Lately I've been reading more again [that sentence is a little confusing]. When I taught I felt like I had so much to read [like papers and papers and papers, plus the class novels and stories], that my personal reading slowed WAY WAY down. I have always had a love for reading, and I don't want that part of me to ever die. PLUS I want Blythe to see me reading, even now. 

Here are a few books I've read/ am reading:

Okay, how do I describe this book? It is obviously about the tragic shooting that happened at Columbine high school in 1999 [written by Dave Cullen]. I was first interested in it a few years ago, and then forgot about it. I was wanting to read another book in the vein of In Cold Blood, and stumbled back upon this one. I downloaded it to my Kindle, and then the horrendous events in Newtown occurred. I felt guilty for reading it, but was entranced. It is a lengthy book and I read it in a little over a week. I had to talk about it with Brent quite a bit to just process some of the stuff, but it really gave me perspective, especially on how the MEDIA portrays and relays information in situations like this. I didn't really need much of a reason to do so, but after reading all the misinformation that was initially put out there surrounding Columbine, I stopped watching news coverage of Newtown completely. If you like journalistic writing, and don't think the subject matter would be too intense for you, this is definitely a good read. [I didn't read it after dark… I learned that lesson with In Cold Blood when I read it at midnight, alone in my dorm room!]


The Zion Chronicles by Bodie Thoene have been well loved by the women in my family. I have been super hesitant to read them though because, well,…I can be a literary snob and Christian Fiction is just typically [not always, but typically] not well written. The plot line in these books has so far been very intriguing though and mostly very well written. They are set in Jerusalem after WWII and I have found the history pretty interesting. The characters are also pretty likable and they are quick, easy reads. Unlike Columbine, they are good to read before going to bed! :) I finished book two last night and started The Return to Zion today. You can tell by the cover art these were written a little while ago! I plan on finishing this five book series and then reading the next series, The Zion Covenant, which is actual a prequel taking place in WWII. I think I will like those more, because I know more about that time period. 

I'm sure anyone who has heard Dr. Laura has an opinion of her, good or bad. My sister loaned me this book a few months back and I have read it off and on while nursing baby girl, or on days that I am about to LOSE IT from being home. I will probably do a STAY AT HOME post sometime soon, but this book has definitely been a blessing to me lately. I think we all need to be praised about what we do, whether that is working, staying at home, retiring…whatever it may be. 

Grandma Pat loaned me this book when I visited with her last week. She read it and enjoyed, and like she has done in the past with good reads, shared it [this is what finally got me to read "East of Eden" which is now a FAVORITE of mine]. It is an easy little read about Forrest Carter's childhood in which he was raised by his grandparents, who were Cherokee. He also wrote The Outlaw Josey Wales, and I grew up watching that film thanks to my father, so I felt like I owed it to Dad to read this. :) It took me by surprise how much I enjoyed it. Some stories written in dialect and told from a children's point of view are meh…so so…[obviously excluding To Kill a Mockingbird], but this one was done very well and was endearing. I almost cried at the end, which I think proves it is a pretty good book. 

Over the past year our church in Louisville has read The Story. Brent wanted to get it, so it was one of his Christmas gifts. As the cover says, it is "the bible as one continuing story of God and his people." The narrative is very easy to read, and it's a great way to reread the stories you've grown up hearing from the bible. 

I have a very very very large list of books I want to read. I even think I'm going to do a little book club via a blog I follow. So the next books I read may be determined by that, if I decide to do it, but regardless of what is chosen for the club, I HAVE to get my hands on this book and read it soon: 

 Jenny talked about it on her blog HERE, and ever since then it has been on my mind. 

There are many more I want to read soon. What about you? Read any good books lately that I should add to my list? Have you read any of the above books? 



get in my belly

I've been trying to plan for meals better. Pinterest has helped me, and the past two weeks have gone very well. Maybe you've been needing some inspiration in the kitchen as well…or maybe your husband is bored of eating the same three casserole dishes like my husband was. So I'm here to help you out. 

Here are some links to a few of the new recipes I tried that we really liked:

we LOVED this one- excellent leftovers

absolutely one of my favorites

this has a little ZIP to it, but very good [i served it with a little sour cream to tone it down]

stayed crispy for leftovers the next day- the sauce was delicious

super easy and delicious- good easily make with white sauce

nothing fancy but super easy, very moist, and would be great served over any type of rice
[i added extra water like recipe suggested which made the "sauce" very runny]

so very good- makes A TON

brent loved this- i liked it

so so so good. so so so easy. reheat wonderfully. 

i also tried SWEET AND SOUR CHICKEN- it was a little too twangy for me

Tonight we are having PULLED PORK SANDWICHES and I'm excited to make SAUSAGE TORTELLINI and LEMON ANGEL HAIR PASTA WITH CHICKEN AND SPINACH over the next couple of weeks. 


because she still calls him daddy

I have started a new endeavor. I had this idea a few years ago, and Brent finally pushed me into actually getting started this year. So last week I packed up Blythe and headed over to Grandma Pat's house. Brent's grandma Pat was born in 1926, remembers EVERYTHING, and is so fun to sit and share a cup of coffee with and listen to her life stories. 

I thought it would be cool if I could somehow collect her stories and memories and history and then weave it into some sort of narrative/book. If nothing else, I just don't want her unique childhood to not be remembered. Last week I recorded a tape and a half of our conversations, have since typed up four pages of notes, and am looking forward to the next visit. I already have some amazing stories: like the time she and two other girls packed their bags and were going to run away to Europe, only to be found on the edge of town by a man named Snake Huff riding bareback on a white horse, or when her freshman class was herded into study hall to listen to the radio about some place called Pearl Harbor, or how during the great depression a family traveled to their town to put on some shows and her mother enlisted one of the girls to teach Pat and her sister how to tap dance. I am looking forward to writing these stories and can only hope that my feeble attempts will somehow capture this amazing woman's life. 

She still refers to her father, who passed away when she was nine years old, as "Daddy." And long after our coffee is gone and the tapes are filled up, she will still have more stories to tell. I think that is a beautiful thing. So I want to DO something. It may not amount to much, or I may spend years trying to capture her life perfectly. Only time will tell. But I'm doing something about it right now. I don't know if Blythe with remember her Great Nini Pat, but I can be certain she will know all about her. 


NINE months of Blythe

It's been a joy…and a lot of work…to have this sweet pea around for nine months. 

It's interesting because you always hear everyone saying, "It's gone SOOO fast! I can't believe I have a 7/8/9 month old!" While that is somewhat true, at the same time it feels like Blythe has been in our lives for a very long time. 

Everyone also says, "Time, please slow down!" And while we are enjoying this time with Blythe as she seems to learn something new everyday, we are equally excited for the next months and years as well. Bring it on, life! 

We had her nine month check up a few weeks ago and she is barely 16 pounds. Yes, she is a little one. She is extremely healthy and happy, and eats like a horse. Seriously, I can't believe the amount of food this kid puts away and yet she remains so small. We are still nursing…two more months and then I can finally BE DONE!! Hallelujah… and she eats three meals a day beyond her four nursing sessions. She also started some finger foods this month, despite her lack of teeth. 

I have a million sweet videos of her doing amazing things, but I can't figure out a quick and easy way to load them to this here blog. Stay tuned. 

Her newest tricks: SO BIG!, Muscles [complete with grunting], peekabo, and she can now do the full version of patty-cake [she claps, rolls, and throws it in the oven]. Yesterday and today she started stacking blocks too! Crawling? Just backwards still. 

And now I'll stop talking and let these sweet pictures speak for themselves. 

It became tradition to go turn on the Christmas lights with Daddy when he got home from work. 
Cardigans have become staples around here. 

This is what happens when you crawl backwards, people: You get stuck in a lot of corners, unable to get yourself out. 

Practicing her follow through at one of Torri's games in her sweatband. 
She helps me do a lot of laundry 

Her first snow
Sweater from Grandma Ann and headband from Aunt CeAnn
She also came up with the idea to tinfoil all of Paige and Torri's things when they were gone one day…little rascal. 
Christmas day
She loves looking at books 
Family picture after Christmas Eve service…and I am NOT wearing a giant bow in my hair- that is the Christmas tree! Ha. 
With Great Grandpa A.J. 
The other Reindeer 

Luckily she likes me

Xylophone from Nini and Pop
Love her sweet, post-nap faces
Our family snowmen that Brent made 
She took her sock off and started playing Peek-a-boo!

Those eyes…I tell ya what… 

Ham and cheese! 

Playing some basketball! 
Sleepy eyes 

I babysat a three year old one day and I let her pick out Blythe's outfit. This is what she came up with :) 
Naked patty-cake
Family photo without giant bow on my head

 And now for her "official" monthly photos:

I've been taking pics of her like this to show her size--well, she didn't want to lay still...

So we busted out one of my dad's "tricks." I didn't really think he had taught her anything, but low and behold…it worked! He does this thing where he whistles like a bird, and then says, "FREEZE!" and puts his hand on her belly. He says he is teaching her how to be still in the woods. So Brent tried it...

And she FROZE long enough for me to snap about 10 pictures! Ha. Maybe my dad isn't crazy…well….



 I also finally got out my Grandpa A.J.'s old baby outfits and snapped a few pictures in one of them:

She tilts her head and looks at people all the time…it is the cutest thing ever. 

this may be my favorite of the day- I want to get it blown up for the wall. 

We just can't keep our hands off her
In case you were wondering, this is our makeshift studio

I love the way these two love each other.
Baby Blythe, we love the way you learn and grow and change everyday. Our hearts expand each moment we spend with you.