49 :: 365


I come upstairs, walk into the bedroom, and find the three of them surrounding our baby.  They are getting him ready for a bath, and his irresistable plush little body is being passed back and forth between the girls and papa.

Someone asked me today if we always knew we wanted a third child.  What do you say to a question like that?!  This picture is my answer.


47 :: 365

just the tip

I believe that if one fathoms deeply one’s own neighborhood and the everyday world in which he lives, the greatest of worlds will be revealed.  — Masanobu Fukuoka, The One Straw Revolution

I want to get back into a big piece of writing and this 365 project is helping — helping me to see the importance of a daily creative habit.  It might seem like a little thing: taking and sharing a photo each day.  But it’s exactly the commitment to do it daily that has pushed me past a point of stagnant energy on multiple occasions.  And this is just the help I need to get back into my bigger writing.  So, thank you all, for your dedication to this project.  Having a group to share with has made all the difference!


45 :: 365

snow mound 45_365

On a soggy day before Christmas, Grandfather made a snow cave to amuse one of his stir-crazy grandchildren.  Over the past two months, the edifice has transformed from a cave to mound, looming larger and larger in front my parents’ house with each new snowfall.  Despite a bit of friendly teasing from my Mom, my Dad has documented the growth of the snow mound and given it various names (from “Something Big” to “Snow Jabba” to “Mount Gousty”) — keeping family members near and far up-to-date on its transformations over the course of the winter.

Today the cousins played on the snow mound, much to the delight of their master snow sculptor Grandfather.  And all the adults in the family started taking bets on how long it will take for this massive pile of snow to melt in the spring!

sliding down


41 :: 365


It is another snow day and I couldn’t be happier.  After lunch, I take Wallace upstairs to change his clothes and get him ready for a nap.  I have him to myself for only a moment before the girls burst into the room and surround him with love and play silks.  They were meant to be together, these three.

sister love




40 :: 365


I am watching Ellen curl up in a cozy chair and flip through the pages of a new version of Harry Potter.  Jeffrey found a hardback edition beautifully illustrated by Jim Kay, and it is magical.

There has been a lot of Harry Potter play around our house.  Most recently the girls built a Hogwarts Castle out of blocks and clay, using marbles for the characters.  The greenish marbles are Slitherins.  The biggest pearly-white marble is Dumbledore.  Dumbledore, Harry, and friends (and enemies) have inspired hours of play in this miniature, magical world.

And yet, when Ellen and I were looking back at old photos last night, she said, “I wish I could go back to then [meaning two or three years ago] . . . when Amie played with me.”  Even though I see them playing together every day, I can understand how it feels different to Ellen now that Amabel has become an avid reader.  Ellen often asks her sister to stop reading and “Play with me!”  This is the only downside that I can see to Amabel’s reading — but it is definitely real.

Funny how I wanted Amabel to fall in love with reading for so long, but now I’m rather glad that it only happened recently.  Just think of all those years of play with Ellen, uninterrupted by silent reading alone.