Unlike some other star Olympians, somehow this little girl didn't make the swimsuit edition of Sports Illustrated this past month (guess she was covering up too much!). But, not one to hold a grudge, Emerson is nonetheless a HUGE fan of the Winter games!


25 Baird Street

Warning: I got a little nostalgic. This post went on a liiiiitttllleee longer than planned!

What seems like forever ago, but was really 'only' 7 years ago, I was graduating college and getting ready to head to graduate school. Headed to a school that was turned out to be a great experience for me but was in a city that had lost its charm and I was going it alone - out into the great unknown I went and I wasn't super thrilled about it. Before I headed that way though, I spent my last summer at a camp where I had spent all my summers from childhood on and where I had experienced all the highs and lows of life. My home away from home. As a kid, I would get home from my two weeks of camp and close the door to my room and CRY and CRY and CRY. I was writing letters to my friends about how much I missed them before we were even down the mountain on the way home, I longed for the smell of the dirty cabins, the damp feeling of my pillow under my head from the humidity of an afternoon rain; and all I wanted was to be back there. As I think about sending Emerson to camp once she is old enough, I feel sad for myself that I will be so excited to be picking her up to bring her home at the end of those two weeks, knowing that all she will want (if she's anything like her mama) is to STAY PUT.

But I digress. All that to say, I was spending another summer there, in a comfortable place, before I moved on to that something new. Things for school were a little up in the air and I didn't even know where I would be living. Not really wanting to live in Johnson City, but not knowing I had another choice, I half-heartedly started the hunt for an apartment. The longer the summer went on, the more (as always) I wished I could just stay in Asheville - just an hour's drive down the mountain from Johnson City. But I didn't have any more reason to stay in Asheville than I did to go to Johnson City alone. UNTIL. Until I asked Kristi (BFF, almost-family-member-stuck-with-me-through-it-and-still-loved-me, one time co-counselor) who had an equal magnetic pull to Asheville and was at camp that summer as well having just finished up at University of Florida with no concrete plans of what was next...didn't she want to live in Asheville too? Well once our old counselor from when we were ten (see how helpful all these camp connections are proving to be) - who lived in Asheville, told us she and her roommates were moving out of their house and we went by to have lunch and see the house, we were SOLD. And that was that; and for the next two fabulous, wonderful, marvelous, freeing, find-yourself-and-love-yourself years, we were the residents of "the Baird house." I drove up and down the mountain 3 days a week for class with Erin, another classmate who lived in Asheville also. This was a saving grace in more ways than one - so great to have someone to talk to and ride with; but even better, it was a built-in 2 hour study session every day! It might have helped me make it through school!

Well, we were the residents of the Baird house along with Fred, the ghost. Seriously. The people who lived there before us once called the police because they were so scared and convinced; Kristi and I definitely huddled on the sofa together crying after one window shutting, glass in the bathroom shattering, freaky night! After we had lived in the house for a few months, I got a phone call from some girl I had never met who wanted to be our roommate. She worked at one of the other camps in Asheville and a mutual friend from Crestridge told her that we were living there and had an extra bedroom. Enter Emily Ogletree (now Dimitris). She was a shoe-in right from the very start and she was a great addition to the frick-and-frack of Kristi and I living in that house. Emily is the most put together on the outside person you will ever meet. Until you see her bedroom. Or her handwriting. The first time we sat beside eachother in church and I looked over at her notes, I think I audibly gawked. I don't know why this chicken scratch surprised me to be coming out of this girl's pen, but I guess she just seemed so put together that I couldn't imagine anything other than typewriter like handwriting to go along with her personality. I love Em for her messy handwriting and piles of clothes in her room, as well as how quickly she could get it together and put on a party and be a hostess, a little mini-Beth Moore - wait and see! I even love her for writing a note in the peanut butter container she put in the trash can telling me to just leave it and not try to wash it out to recycle it after she had already thrown it away. Who....me??

Well, in one week's time, I have had impromptu visits from BOTH of these girls, making my heart so happy! Kristi, Daniel, and new baby Carver who is only 7 weeks younger than Emerson were on their way through town to see Daniel's parents who live in Winston. We were on our way out of town to meet Bella, but got to get together for a super brief 'meet & greet' at Brueggers (a favorite old stomping ground of Kristi & I's - nothing glamorous, but a treat coming from Demorest) :) I was so glad to get my hands on Kristi's cute little guy and to get to hug her and see her even if it was super brief! I loved getting to be pregnant with Kristi and other friends who were pregnant at the same time (Nellie, Debbie!) - it is such a fun thing to share. Then, Thursday I had a voicemail from Emily after work saying that she was in Charlotte for a girls' weekend with her mom and sister. Except actually, when she called her mom from the airport to tell her she was there to pick her up, her mom reminded her that the girls' weekend is actually next weekend. Doh. Oh well, we got to enjoy her mistake by having her over for dinner and a glass or two of wine - we were trying our best to get her to spend the night! My little Em was so happy to meet my other Em and aunt Kristi this week! I love these girls and am so thankful for BOTH of you and our time together in Asheville - it will always be in a top spot in my heart of times that changed and made my life!



Here is a picture to break your heart. This is Emmy after her first attempt to cry it out at bedtime 3 weeks ago. She cried FOR TWO HOURS and wasn't any closer to putting herself to sleep than when we started. When Terry finally got to go rescue her and picked her up, she had her little hand on her cheek like this and kept it like this for at least 15 minutes. I feel pretty sure she was pouting...and exhausted. You can see she gets her expressions from her daddy. Beth just called to tell me that she has been awake since 8:30 this morning and wondered if I had any tips. Other than lay down with her and snuggle her sweet self while you pat her back (upon which deep sleep ensues), I'm at a loss. She prefers lying on her right side with your left arm under her head and your right arm draped over her legs for a little bit of weight to remind her you aren't going anywhere. Seriously. We will be working this weekend on a 'middle of the road' approach in our household to help her recover from getting off schedule from our travels this weekend. You might want to pray for us. :) I should also probably start planning now for how to handle schedule changes and time zone changes for when she goes to meet her cousins in California in the spring....Lord, help me! And in case you needed a close-up of this pitiful little face...


Vote for Becky & Mike!!!

Sweet Becky and Mike are potential WINNERS in a contest on a blog for their proposal story!

Becky entered a "Best Proposal" Contest a few weeks ago, and she found out yesterday they are one of the finalists!!! But in order to win, they have to have the most votes...so that is where all of you come in :)

Here is the link to Morgan's blog post about the contest finalists; at the end of the blog, there is a survey link you can click on to vote. If you don't want to read the blog, just click here and vote for them. I think you can vote over and over again - do it! Help Becky win so I can live vicariously through her since I've never won a contest or drawing before!

Here is a picture of their fabulous save the date - you know you want to vote for them!


Ooohhhh Bella...

[***edited Tuesday afternoon: I added video at the end of this post of Bella playing on her new activity table - one of the many many many toys that Aunt Becca brought from all of her fabulous and generous babysitting peeps! You can see some of the loads of stuff in the background of the video - so awesome!]

Our adventure to Knoxville this weekend was just that - an adventure. Our travels have failed to be boring since Emerson was born! They were calling for snow in Charlotte starting Friday night, but since we haven't had any in the city yet, we figured we wouldn't really get any. But as I left work at 5:30, the roads were covered even though it hadn't been snowing at all when I had started with my 4:30 patient at the end of my day. But we packed up, got Emerson all snuggly and decided to hit the road, figuring it wouldn't be a big deal since we were driving out of the snow since the storm was coming from the south, oddly enough. WRONG. Three hours later, we were finally hitting Hickory which is only 56 miles away and I was feeling like the most inadequate mother around, so we decided to stop at the lovely Fairfield in for the night. It wasn't that the roads were horrible, though they were bad - but people were driving as if we were getting the feet of snow that DC got, and with the detour on I-40 because of the rockslide, we had HOURS to go. So we tucked into the hotel with 200+ highschoolers whose ski trip got put on hold half way to their destination also. What a blast for those chaperones I'm sure! Em slept in an arm chair scooted up beside our bed - she was the perfect length for it, and she slept like a rock. [sidenote: do you see this precious onesie (actually called a hoodsie) that she has on with her baby legs? terry got it for her when i was pregnant - it has a bear wearing wings, asking a bee for honey - we love it.] When we got up in the morning, the roads were looking good, so we hit the road again and 5 hours later, we made it to see Bella! Oh yeah, and Molly!

When you talk to Bella, if you say "ooohhh Bella" to her, she will try to say it back and it is the cutest. We were packed floor to ceiling in our car with things for her, and when we got there and unloaded it was like Christmas morning! Sweet Molly's house has been overflowing with gifts of love like this for Bella and her, and we went through it all finding some great clothes, toys and books, along with some stuffed animals that scared Bella to death and went straight to the Goodwill pile. We tried our best to help sort through some stuff to make room for all of the new
baby things in the house, and after doing loads of laundry, cram more clothes into her already full closet. This girl has got more fantastic clothes than she will every be able to wear before she outgrows! After a rough night of belly pains from tapeworms...yes, tapeworms - I'm not allowed to discuss it here because Terry can't handle it. But people. YUCK. - Bella came and tucked into bed with Terry, Em & me while Molls got some sleep. She could not be cuter. She loved Terry and snuggled right up with him to drink her bottle and play with Em before we headed out to the kitchen for more playtime and a second breakfast.

I can't wait for another road trip to go back and see this girlie and love on her more! It is amazing to see how far she has come in just a few short weeks from being unable to pick her head up because she was so weak to now having a full belly, a mama who loves her with a community fully supporting her, standing up and cruising around playing with all of these new toys, and defining what people mean when they say 'it takes a village.' Bella, you got yourself one FANTASTIC village girl. God sure has been lookin' out for you!



sorry folks, we've been a little tired around here and the blog has taken a backseat. i'm kind of at a loss for updates now that i feel like our days revolve around wake up early, take em to beth's, go to work, come home, feed em, go to bed early, repeat. last week i worked my first full week and it felt looooong. the thought of having a second child feels so far away and impossible (don't worry not that we were planning on it anytime soon anyway). in fact it makes me so tired i can' t even seem to muster up the strength to use capitals in this post :) we head to knoxville to meet bella this weekend, so we'll have a BIG FUN post when we get home!