We’ve Moved

•June 20, 2009 • Leave a Comment

It’s official, this blog is now retired and we have moved onto bigger, better and newer places. After much process, work (and rework) MATALIE.net has launched. I will no longer be posting here on g.design journal, so please make sure your bookmarks, RSS feeds and any other applicable linkage is redirected to www.matalie.net from now on. This site will remain up as an archive, though all 2.5 years of original posts are intact over on Matalie, too. Thanks to everyone for your readership, you have made blogging an amazing integral part of how we catolog our life. I hope you will find the new site to be a vast improvement to this one.

So head on over, cruise around the new site and be sure to drop a line letting us know what you think! See ya there.

Slow

•May 3, 2009 • 1 Comment

I know I dropped off the face of the Earth this week- at least here on this blog. The new site is SOOOOO close. Almost there. I want to promise by Wednesday, but I have learned to not promise anything as it all comes along with the contingency of kids and anything that can go wrong will. I will say it should be fully switched over by Wednesday. Should.

Until then, I don’t plan on posting as I am usually short on minutes anyways. Now all my available effort is going into the new site and other projects, so bear with me. I will leave you with an awesome mind-boggling video that begs the question, what can we accomplish here on the internet?

Preview of process

•April 24, 2009 • Leave a Comment

I have a background in visual design and communication- be it Architecture, Photography, Graphics, Art, whatever. I in no way consider myself an expert in any of these fields, but can do a fairly decent job when given time and reason to do so. Overall, I think it is a really fun expression of design sensibilities that allows me to stretch my thinking in new ways. I also have a staunchly set and opinionated aesthetic, often to my own detriment because I like things to look clean, constrained, well-designed and polished and apply that to nearly every aspect of my life. Thankfully, I have in recent years loosened my grip on my perfectionism of how things look in many areas of life. But occasionally I get a chance to dabble in the creative realm and put some serious thought and effort into designing something to have a fresh and new visual impact. I have done Architecture presentations to business cards, but almost always they have been for someone else, with someone else’s requirements and likes. Don’t get me wrong, I really enjoy problem solving and getting the chance to do some ‘work’. I really love branding. In some ways it is actually easier when there are set perimeters and an overall vision for what needs to be communicated. I find it far, far harder to do this for myself simply because it involves some serious introspection, self editing and visually expressing an identity. Too often, there are too many possibilities, too many directions and rabbit trails to go down. And I never, never use the first rendition of anything, so it takes refinement.

Lately it has been really enjoyable to rebrand, redefine and redesign a few different personal projects, from natalie g. photography’s portfolio website and forthcoming new blog, to Matt’s consulting business blog, and currently the redesign of this space. So I thought I would share and go through some of the processing I have been in.

Like any design project, I usually start with some research and precedent studies. What else is out there? What am I drawn to? What is pushing the envelope of current design trends? What to avoid? Some of those I linked to in a previous post. Then I jump into a sketchbook. Or, in recent days, random bits of paper I carry around the house and jot down ideas, then get lost as soon as I discard their necessity. Happens with grocery lists too and those usually have the week’s meal plan on the other side. Sketching allows me to get ideas out of my head fast, and in a quick array of variations. I also write out objectives and overall aesthetic goals or possible looks I want to achieve. Sketching is more of an exploration exercise, visual brainstorming if you will. In this case, I wrote down ideas about what I want the Matalie look to convey and communicate ABOUT us, which is really hard because then I have to whittle away and decide what to project ourselves as. Much of what I write and draw out doesn’t make it any further than the paper. At one point I had written down and sketched out an idea for illustrated characters of each of us, an idea which quickly died for two very obvious reasons (1. that is totally not me, and 2. it wouldn’t last very long because with the kids constantly growing and changing it would be outdated in a matter of months). Not to mention it is a bit corny and trendy.

Before I went any further, realized I had to define what Matalie was going to be about. This took some serious self-inspection of what this blog, g.design journal, both does well and is lacking in, and then what think I wanted Matalie to be. Surfacing to the top of these priorities is that this blog is about our life, communicated mostly through photographs as a catalog and dialogue of what we are up to. Additionally our life is about our values and how we express them through parenting, design, making, thinking, doing and processing (many of which have been categories on this blog, which I feel are becoming rather limiting and simultaneously too general). The quick tagline, “snapshots of life” stemmed from this, which effectively tells the reader immediately what I want to communicate the blog is about- about life, through images, as it is happening. Now that I had fleshed out some thoughts, I could apply those on the style of the logo and what values would be presented through it.

From there I jumped into Adobe Illustrator and started the process of experimenting with different fonts, graphics and looks while having fresh in my mind the ideas and priorities I had already identified for Matalie. I tried to push out into some new looks and break beyond the typical constraints I am prone too. Sometimes there there is a downside to creative freedom surrounding design – there can be such a thing as too many ideas! I consolidated the ideas I liked the best, the ones that were rising to the top and moved the ones that were bad enough to not show (definitely not even here) off the page. Then I got some constructive feedback from Matt, which allowed me to explain my thinking process on each of the designs. 

Below: 

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Starting in the upper left: Since the name Matalie was one we were dubbed with in college (Matt + the latter part of Natalie) I wanted to accentuate the unity and affinity between the two of us. Moving right and down the right side: I liked the gapped vowels in this simple font logo. The gaps signify that the blog isn’t a whole picture of who we are, that while we seek to share our life and be known, there is much left out and edited from the process of blogging. It also signifies we are incomplete, imperfect, a work in progress and lacking in many areas. The diamond-shaped logo, originally developed in the middle, became a sort of abstracted camera flash, playing off of the ‘snapshots of life’ and speaks to the overlapping, intertwined nature of our family and our marriage. I combined it with the text to try to create a bit of a camera look, the flash on most classic cameras is in the upper left of the body, so it would be flashing out of the page in this case. Moving down below the yellow: This one is by far the corniest. It is a bit too literal with the guy and girl in love name combo thing. The font is sort of collegian, speaking to the fact we met and got married in college. The two blue banded ones below: Another expression of the gapped text logo as negatives in a field. I ended up further developing the one on the left, which pulled to the bottom, creates a bit of a dynamic tension. The wiggly folded band on the right variation plays off the ‘M’ and an enfolded, complementary intertwining of our lives. I further studied that in the other two ‘M’s’ in the middle of the page. On the bottom and left: The two tabs were exploring fonts in a tabbed field. The blog template I have chosen has tabbed navigation at the top, so I thought I could pull a logo into a larger tab that would be congruently fitting with the template (it wasn’t).

Now that I had a lot of ideas, it was time to start exploring them within the format of the template. Many of the above designs were ruled out simply because they didn’t fit. My first idea for the template was to add a torn notebook paper header, which played off the whole college idea. The first idea usually is not the best one to go with, at least that has been my experience and firm belief in both Architecture and other realms of design. Think of it more as getting out the preconceived ideas you are likely drawing from your memory of having seen somewhere else, then throw it out and start over. So next I created a mock-up of the general window of the template. I played with some ideas of color theory, using Color Schemer to garner combinations and a pallet to work from. I knew I wanted to incorporate Yellow, it has become a bit of a running theme for me. Through this, I used the logo combined with a graphical scheme to develop the stark text into a few secondary variations such as being pulled up into the top of the browser window, cutting off the tops of the letters and making the word more graphic and dynamic. Also, I added the hatched lines in the white letters to soften the starkness of the negative cutouts the letters create, make some visual interest and capture a Retro-modern-vintage cycling poster-feel I was loosely going for. I struggled with how to incorporate the flash graphic and had a few different variations for the tagline. I left the items separate for now in order to export them over into the Blog Template in Photoshop so I could work with them in the real thing.

My Export below:

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Once I got the graphic imported into Photoshop, I needed to rescale it down to the appropriate size and resolution. But then I noticed how I liked it in tension both at the top and behind the body of the content area. So I scaled it to be touching both the top and the tabs, allowing the text logo to still read behind the navigation tabs. Then I added a transparent bar over the left portion, which adds another color, serves to hold my tagline and then played off the same cropping idea with the logo. I think it still needs some tweaking and refinement before it is ready to export onto the web, but I doubt I will so completely change my mind that I toss this whole idea out the window. I am really digging the fresh, clean look that remains minimal without being overly stark or plain. I think it speaks to what I want to invoke for the Matalie brand without going over the top or being too mundane. I would love some feedback and thoughts on what I have shared and more than anything, really excited to unveil this new work and all that I have done!

Sneak Peak below:

matalie_home_testheader

A few thoughts, notions and reflections I have had from this process, which I wanted to share and remind myself of:

Visual design should tell a story without wordy explanation
Design is an amazing thing which, when used well, achieves far more than just what we see- it impacts feelings that people get when they open the page. It makes the strongest statement right off the bat in regards to what you’re about (peaceful, excited, energized, professional, welcome). Show, don’t tell.

Don’t overlook that first impressions are based on appearance
I can’t tell you how many times I have opened up a page only to navigate away as quickly as possible, not even giving the content a chance because the site is either hideous or looks just like the 20 I just looked at. I didn’t want my site to be like that. When we look at something for the first time, we make a judgment about the site’s relative success, professionalism, and relevance before we read a single word or click on any links. Often even before we realize it, our judgment on whether or not we will stay and invest time looking is influenced and determined by what the blog looks like. What will the first impressions you want people to get? Do they know what the site is about immediately? Does the logo, graphics, header, tagline, title tags all strongly communicate what the site is about? Where are the viewer’s eyes drawn to (is it one important element or are things cluttered)? Make them want to stay.

A few more appearance things to think about:

Minimize visual clutter
Everything- (button, graphic, link, and flashy-moving animated gif thingies) that you add should have a clear purpose. Just because you can put it on there doesn’t mean you should. Figure out what you really want the focus to be on, and minimize the rest. Not everything has to be on the front page.

Unique appearances sets you apart from the standard
At the most basic level, break away from the preconceived, canned looks provided and take ownership of how the site is a reflection of you. This can be as easy as changing fonts, colors, and header all the way to purchasing a unique template or custom design. Take a look around what is out there. What’s good? What’s not? What’s trendy? What do you identify with? A note of warning- don’t go crazy here. Just because you can change it doesn’t mean you should. All I have to do is reference MySpace or GeoCities sites from 1994 and you instantly know what I am talking about. A little variation can go a long ways in making things unique. And don’t overlook consistency. Looking at any major brand and you will notice how the look sets the tone, then is held constant.

What do you want them to do when they get there?  
Beyond just how it looks, what is the purpose? One question to ask when looking at your blog’s front page is ‘what are your objectives?’ What do you want people to do when they arrive on the site for the first time? If you can prioritize what is important, then everything else you might have on your site becomes secondary. Remember, there is about 30 seconds of time that someone will give before moving on, so the visual impact needs to clearly communicate what you are about AND how they can respond. Do they look at your images? Do you want them to read what you wrote? Do you want them to get engaged and comment? Do you want them to get to know you elsewhere, like Twitter or Facebook? Once you’ve identified your objective for them you can integrate a predominant position for that call to action in a prime and logical location. 
Give them something to do.


The look and feel of homemade

•April 24, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Homemade baby food, that is.

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We are a pretty hands-on family, can’t you tell? And yes, I do a fair amount of making my own baby food. My dedication to this task has waned as I have progressed from the first kid down to the third, there is just less time and sadly simply less drive to expend the effort in this department. I think by now I pretty much have it down to a science and it doesn’t feel like nearly as big a task as when Araiya was a baby. I do it far less frequently and still buy a fair amount of jarred baby foods and rice cereal. Though every so often I get really motivated and make a big batch of steamed foods to puree. This is one of the few times I bust out the really big stockpot, as I am all about efficiency. It has two levels of trays for steaming, so I can get a big variety of foods in one fell swoop (this also comes in handy for making fresh Bao- yum). Steaming preserves more of the vitamins and minerals than boiling. When Araiya was a baby I also bought a big stainless steel hand cranked puree thing, it really is pretty awesome for these large batches, though I find far more liking in the motorized ease of our mini food processor when I have smaller amounts.

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I find really the process couldn’t be more simple. Steam ’til soft. Crank ’til mushy. Freeze ’til needed. This last batch we did sweet potatoes, carrots, beets and pears. Pia has really been digging adorning herself in beets. We also usually mix the fruit or veggie mush with Rice Cereal, just to make it go a little further, give it more bulk in her tummy and provide iron. There’s a part of me that wishes I was better at making baby food exclusively as there’s many compelling reasons over using jarred foods. It’s fresh, nutritious and free of additives. It also ensures baby is exposed to a greater variety of tastes and textures which helps when making the transition to more solid foods. Not to mention it is a fraction of the cost. I like thinking that Matt and I provide my family with good food and there is just more of a tactile and elaborate process to this opposed to just the familiar pop of the lid in your hand. However, it remains a process, often tedious. Even when I have the stuff, the means and the ability, it is far to easy to just pop a lid. They both achieve the same results. Of course, the overall goal is to develop healthy eating habits regardless. Now we just need to work on getting and keeping the food in where it is supposed to go, though Pia looks pretty good in Fuchsia, no?

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A Day in the Life [ski day]

•April 23, 2009 • Leave a Comment

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05:15 :: Wake to a barely rising sun, move through a still and quiet house laid out with preset piles of ski clothes and bags in their expected positions, awaiting the inevitable bustle of what is about to come.

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05:30 :: Start making breakfast. Actually, scratch that. Start making coffee first, then preparation for baked eggs and toast follows after I set the water on the stove to boil. The pile of eggshells catches a glean of orange sunlight slanting through the front window, stretching deep into the house and across the stainless steel prep table where I have discarded the shells. I know we are in for an absolutely beautiful day on the mountain.

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05:45 :: Go in to wake the girls, their room, tucked away on the far side of the house, still engulfed in a cocoon of quiet darkness. Tallis sits up right away, instantly awake at the creek of the sticky door opening against the door jamb. Araiya, my carbon copy, burrows down farther into her pillow, trying to keep the disturbance of waking up at bay just a little longer, savoring the feelings of sweet sleep.

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05:50 :: By the time I get the girls out of bed, to the potty and into clean undies the sunrise has burst forth across our orange living room wall, setting the house aflame with light. Bright, happy and energized by the morning sunshine and the excitement of going skiing, the girls now bounce up to the table, ready to eat.

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06:00 :: We all sit down at the table to eat: Sourdough toast with baked eggs, with yolks just runny enough to dip toast in. And coffee. A full, steaming french press.

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06:05 :: The usual jabber fills the house. Girls are discussing and deliberating over who gets the pink skis and how many runs they are going to take.

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06:10 :: Noise of conversation and the clanging of dishes making their way into the dishwasher at the clumsy hands of toddlers awake Pia, who, after a diaper change, is the first into her ski base layers and rests on the living room carpet with her bottle as I begin to help the other girls into their ski clothes.

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06:45 :: It still amazes me exactly how long it takes to get three kids and two adults ready to do anything, even something that, by now, we should have down pat. Packed bags make it into the car. Kids make it into the car. Matt even manages to tighten the bolt on the windshield wiper that had come loose, rendering one wiper useless for several weeks, though he misplaces the plastic cap covering the bolt, which requires frantic searching before it turns up in his pocket.

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06:55 :: We’re off, navigating the routine of city streets which has become our pattern, our path, from the Urban neighborhood in which we dwell…

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07:00 :: …across the liquid expanse of lake bordering the city, signaling our exit out across the water towards the mountains…

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07:25 :: …which gently rise up from the lowlands, following the wide, winding black ribbon of highway away and up.

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07:50 :: Until, finally, we diverge from the highway, wrap ourselves around towering peaks, veer into a dirt parking lot, and arrive at the opening of a wooden bridge, our last threshold, a dominant ‘A’ announcing arrival at our destination of Alpental.

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08:00 :: Schlepping. Schlepping our newly gifted, all-encompassing, carry-all, wonder-bag-on-wheels, across a gravel parking lot and up the wooden planks of the bridge. I feel we look far more suited to be hurrying off to catch a plane than participating in a rugged outdoor sport with this thing. However, one bag is far more convenient than the 5 we’ve become accustom to, once dubbed Mamma Sherpa with my hands, back, shoulders and arms adorned with bags, children, gear and boots.

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08:15 :: Drop our stuff in the instructors locker room while the kids instantaneously climb into the mini-caves of the cubbies, laughing and pretending they are bears. We wait a few minutes, while our supervisor comes back from upstairs with her morning coffee, then check in by adding our names to the list of available instructors for Private Lessons. Nothing lined up for the day, so we start getting the girls ready to go outside, holding them still enough to beging lathering them in sunscreen as a first priority.

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08:30 :: Lifts open so Matt heads up to get a first run in by himself. I continue to adorn the girls- jackets, gloves, hats, sunglasses, helmet- items I soon will end up holding as they are discarded due to dislike and overheating. The sun is out, warming the mountain. By 10:00 the conditions of most of the lower runs in direct sunlight are akin to Slurpees. No matter, we still are set for having fun regardless.

09:45 :: Check into the office to see if any lessons have shaped up for the morning. Nothing, so we resolve to make our way outside, two toddlers clonking around in ski boots on the brick deck and Pia, covered in a sunhat and Baby Banz, strapped in the Beco on my back.

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10:15 :: After Matt meets us at the bottom of the main run, right outside the lodge, he and Araiya take off for a round up the ‘Black Chair’, leaving me and a crying, jealous Tallis just off the lodge’s deck, between filling racks of skis, where I get the usual comments and questions of ‘how old is she?’ to ‘poor baby’. We claim a table and subdue the whining with a Granola bar, secretly stashed in my pocket for the expected meltdown unaware of it’s existence to screaming child, who is far to easily placated by the lure of chocolate chunks. Matt and Araiya come cruising into sight down the face of the mountain, Araiya now skiing top to bottom completely on her own.

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10:25 :: Matt and Araiya head up for another lap, Tallis settling for wearing the Blue Skis as we trod around the snow just off of the deck.

10:45 :: Check in again, still no lessons. Spend some time conversing with my supervisor, talking about Whistler, rotator cuffs, program changes for next year, kids. Other people come in and own, many familiar faces. Tallis has another granola bar and uses the potty.

11:00 :: Matt and Araiya make it down from lap 2. Tallis begs for a turn, so she and Matt go off to the Bear House, which likely just serves as storage shed for mountain operations but has been dubbed such by the girls. A grinning Tallis can be seen from afar, sliding up and down the gentle incline along a groomed path through the trees. Araiya, Pia and I take a potty break and converse with another instructor who has arrived, then put the camera away anticipating the lack of extra hands for lunchtime.

11:20 :: Araiya, Pia and I make our way upstairs to accrue lunch. I have $15 worth of prize tickets received from the mountain, ticking away their time in which to be used as the season winds down. Today they buy two Taco Salads, but with our employee discount and lack of ability to get change, also wind up with a Soda, Sour Gummy Worms and M&M’s on our tray. Araiya, bouncing with excitement at the prospects of candy, helps me carry all our food, teetering just out of reach of a grabby Pia, down onto the deck to enjoy lunch in the warm sunshine.

11:30 :: Pia, now conked out for her morning nap on my back, looses the pacifier out of her mouth, which goes rolling across the brick deck. Some nice person picks it up for us. I suck off the dirt and germs and have Araiya stick it back in, in classic unfazed mommy style. Matt and Tallis join us and we eat on the deck, ending our meal with an entire bag of Gummy Worms, split between the four of us.

12:45 :: Check in again, still nothing. Ski School Director is in, chat with him. We go back out to ski and play in the snow more.

13:30 :: Come back in so Mommy can finally put her ski boots on and go for a run with Araiya. After promised Mommy run has been stated, someone comes in the office for a lesson- plains foiled. An upset Araiya must be consoled as I get ready to teach, rather than take her skiing. 

13:55 :: Leave the girls with Matt to go teach a 1-hour private.

15:05 :: Make it back from my lesson, change jackets, take a potty break and head back up the lift, this time with Araiya.

15:10 :: We rise up the mountian, a chatty 3 year old telling me all about her prior runs with Daddy, pointing out all the bigger runs she is going to ski when she grows up. I am filled with awe at her, at her passion and at her understanding of this sport. She hops off the chair, almost by herself now, speeds around the lift to the top of the cat track. She tells me I get to follow her. 

15:15 :: Araiya is now skiing the entire Cat Track, even the rolling pitch down around the lift, which by the later afternoon has become a mogul field. She is trying to jump off the bumps. We cruise down the cut path, peering down into steeper runs, to which Araiya informs me are Black Diamonds. I ask her if she wants to ski one. Um… she thinks about it… not right now. So we cruise on.

15:20 :: Almost reaching the final pitch down to the lodge, Araiya finds a gigantic ball of snow, the biggest snowball ever. Somehow I get talked into carrying it down the rest of the mountain to bring to Tallis. I wonder what we must look like to the other skiers riding up the lift over our heads.

15:25 :: We make it down to a waving Tallis, Daddy and sleeping Pia. Check in for the last time, now signing out for the day. After switching gloves, then resolve to hit up one last run before calling it a day.

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15:35 :: Araiya and I stand at the top of Miester, the first of three advanced pitches which peel off the cat track. I was showing her the Black Diamond run that stretched out below us, point out a little boy who was about a year older, arms flailing as he wedge turned down the slope with his Mom. Wanna do it? She scoots herself forward, then slides her skis over the lip of the cat track down into her first Black Diamond. The first half, the steepest half, she has no problem. Then she decides to stop turning, power wedging, her legs as far apart as she can get them, bracing herself straight down the hill. Eventually her legs get too wide to support her and she falls back onto her butt. I stoop down next to her, explaining again how making turns down the hill controls her speed better, how it is especially needed on this steeper slope. Her stubbornness digs in it’s heels, she just wants to go straight down.

15:40 :: We continue down, me continuing my encouragements for turning, her resolving to go as fast as she can. We ski through the Gut, a bottle-necking part of the mountain that is just plain difficult to navigate. She snakes through the moguls, nearly as tall as she is, down onto the flats.

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15:45 :: The five of us sit in the late afternoon sun, eating ‘Turn Beans’ in celebration of Araiya’s accomplishments.

15:55 :: We head back inside to repack our stuff, passing the Ski School Director on his way out, who had passed me and Araiya going down Miester. He congratulated her on what she had done, excited for his own 3 year old to start skiing and have a ski buddy in Araiya. We talk about coming up the following weekend, as it seems at the end of each Saturday we continue to be spurred on for more.

16:05 :: Dragging the bag, who’s wheels are already torn up, we retreat back across the bridge and arrive back at the car, standing alone at the far end of the lot. Driving away, we glance back up at the mountain, the lifts now still, sun dipped behind the ridge line, and comment what a good day that was. Within a few minutes of winding down the highway, all three kids are asleep in the back seat.

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16:55 :: Pulling up in front of our house, which seems like a world away from Alpental, Matt and I carry sleeping girls up the front stairs, start reheating soup and grilling panini sandwiches, eager to spend time as a family as we wind down a full day before the girls’ bedtime at 19:30. We reflect on the season, on our family, on the activity we have chosen to commit our family to cultivate, so thankful that Saturdays have been a day, even for the girls, to look forward to with such joyous anticipation.

Pia post

•April 21, 2009 • Leave a Comment

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A bit more than 8 months, we are just about at a turning point for Miss Pia. Crawling with abundance, rather, dragging her lower half all over the house, frantically scooting after her older sisters. Mobility has opened up a whole new world of participation with these two other little creatures she is fascinated with. Just this week she has started pulling herself up to standing, mostly on my leg or arm, but also in her crib signaling I need to find the allen key set and lower the mattress again. Matt thinks she could be walking before her first Birthday, something that seems more and more likely with each passing day.

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Crawling and standing don’t quite cover her mobility. Mobility in every axis is more what we are talking- rolling, pivoting, spinning, sitting, diving. By far our most squirmy baby, nearly to the point I often have a hard time holding her. She has discovered moving and is now an addict. That is still coupled with her calm serenity, much akin to her movements in the womb. She is so often content, happy as a clam sitting there occupied with a toy. Yet underlying is a strong, quiet determination, especially when it comes to accomplishing what she wants. Commonly eating some crumb or tidbit a sister has dropped on the floor. She’s quick to nab it up, eager to grab and eat whatever the rest of us have. 

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Her eyes are by far the most amazing. Huge, I know. Her sweet round little face is all but overwhelmed by those blue sparklers. They get wider and wider the more she is taking in. Pia is a space cadet too, I often catch her staring blankly off into space, only to snap out of it when she catches my eye, breaking into a big gurgling grin.

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I can’t help but notice the differences between her and the other girls. Each has her own personality, her own set of characteristics and responses. Overall, Pia is the easiest. Even with the nursing issues, which continue despite my not hardly nursing her, we haven’t had many speed bumps or derailments. Sure, a lot of it is the familiarity having been through the infancy stage a few times. Though I still am convinced they each come with their own sets of issues to work through, my perception is this has been pretty mild.

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This week we have had two All-Nighters, something that has come and gone but I am hoping will start increasing in frequency. Overall, I have been pretty stoked with her usual gig of waking once a night. The occasional hiccup of twice or having a bit of difficulty going down still doesn’t warrant me complaining in any way. I am looking forward to the day when the majority of nights I may get a solid 8 hours. But really, I have little to complain about in light of the joy that lies within the task and work it is raising these girls. Too often it is far too easy to loose sight of the pure, overflowing abundance of joy parenting is when I have my head down in the heat of the day-to-day when I am too focused on the narrow scope of immediate struggles and loose sight of the overall. I cannot wait to see who and what Pia is up to at 9 months; and 12 months; and 18…

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Things for today

•April 21, 2009 • Leave a Comment

April 21st is Free Cone Day at Ben & Jerry’s, details and locations can be found HERE. We might try to get out this afternoon to the Greenlake location.

Today also kicks off the Gospel Coalition conference in Chicago, which will have a live webcast starting at 2pm Central time (that’s 12 noon Pacific) and the link to the live feed is HERE. If you follow along at Twitter, tweet or search #gcnc09