Friday, July 31

Management Material

The only thing Judd was bummed about when he turned 30 was that he had not made it to the manager level in his career. He had applied for a couple manager positions at Delta, but never got the job.

A couple of months ago he found out that they were going to start an internal audit department in Delta. He watched the job postings and saw that a manager position was posted that he thought he had just enough experience to apply for. So, he applied immediately.

We waited and waited and waited. They never scheduled an interview. I encouraged him to follow up with the hiring manager asking about the status. Had they filled the job? Were they not hiring for it anymore? He heard back almost immediately and he had an interview scheduled for this past Monday.

After the interview, he thought that he had done well. Judd is extremely good at things like interviews and standardized tests. He just has that confidence about him. I guess it is true that opposites attract because I am terrible at both. I think I interviewed for about 1,000 jobs and only got 1 offer after college. Judd interviewed for 4 or 5 and had 4 or 5 offers.

Judd called me yesterday afternoon and asked, "Do you know any internal audit managers?" I replied, "Nope." He said, "YOU DO NOW!!" He got the job. I couldn't be prouder of him. I know he is going to do awesome in his new position.

Wednesday, July 29

Child of mine

I hear you cry. I open my eyes and look at the clock, it is 5 AM. There is a debate forming in my mind - do I get up and comfort you or do I let you learn to comfort yourself. It only takes a few minutes for my heart to win. I rub my eyes, get out of bed, and enter your room. You are standing in your crib by the door. You look up at me in the darkness with those eyes, then reach up with your little arms so that I will pick you up.

We sit down in the rocking chair. I am irritated that you woke me up. Don't you know that it is early? Don't you know that I have to go to work today? Why won't you just sleep? I am tense and frustrated.

I give you some water to drink. You drink it and then put your pacifier in your mouth. You look at me with sleepy eyes. Then you sigh and put your head on my chest. I can feel you relax and just lean into me. I can feel your little arms and hands wrapped around my middle.

I start to relax. We rock. I feel bad for being so frustrated with you. I feel guilt. There are so many people that would be grateful to have a happy, healthy, beautiful child to get up with at 5 AM. I need to remind myself of this.

Finally I lay you down in your crib and you fall back asleep. It is now 6am, so rather than crawl back in bed with your daddy, I get in the shower and get ready for work. On the way to work I think of you. There will be a time soon when you can't fit in my lap and let me rock you - you won't even want me to. It is then that I will look back on mornings like this one and smile.

I love you more than you will probably ever know.

Tuesday, July 28

Surprise, Part 2

Rachel and her maids.

My baby sister, Rachel, is getting married in early December. My mom and sister, Sally, came up with the great idea to throw her a surprise shower on Saturday. So, Charlotte and I flew up to PA last Thursday night.

As most of you know, Judd works for Delta, so we fly for free as long as there is a seat available on the plane. The travel up to PA was a little bit stressful this time. I looked at the flights into Harrisburg all day last Thursday and the last flight of the day was looking good, plenty of seats. Then, about 3:00, the flight before that one was cancelled. I looked at the flight I was going to take and it quickly became oversold. So, I then started looking at Friday's flights and they were quickly becoming oversold. I called Judd as I started to panic. He looked at the flights to Baltimore (where my sisters live) and there was a flight at 5:45 that had seats. I looked at the clock, it was 3:45 - and I hadn't packed yet.

I ran around the house throwing clothes in a suitcase for Charlotte and me. Then, I raced to day care to pick her up. I told the teacher I didn't care if she had a dirty face, etc, just GIVE HER TO ME. I strapped her in the car and was on the road to the airport about 4:15pm. Judd met us at the airport so I didn't have to park. We made it to the gate by 5:20.

We got to Baltimore, my sister picked us up at the airport (Thanks Sally!), and we drove to meet my parents halfway to their house. I finally got Charlotte into bed around midnight that night.

After that, we had a great time the rest of the weekend. Charlotte and I hung out with my mom on Friday. After dinner that night, my mom, dad, and I went to feed the ducks in Boiling Springs. Charlotte thought it was great fun. Then Judd flew in late Friday night.

While Judd and my dad watched Charlotte on Saturday, my mom and I went Mother of the Bride dress shopping with Rachel in Hershey. My mom tried on lots of dresses and found one that is perfect. After dress shopping we made our way to the restaurant for a girl's lunch. Rachel thought it would just be the 3 of us, but it happend to include 25 of her friends and family! She got lots of great loot - I think they are set. It is such a special time for Rachel and Adam, I'm glad I was there to be a part of it!

Thursday, July 23


Lately Charlotte has wanted to sit in her chair and read her books. She walks into her room and pats her hand on the chair indicating she wants me to put her in it. I lift her into the chair and she starts giving me orders to pass her books. It's not just any book, she has definite ideas of which ones she wants.

She likes to pile a bunch of them on the chair and flip through them.

Then, she gets tired of me taking pictures of her reading books and this happens:

Monday, July 20


I have been planning a surprise party for Judd for about a month. I wanted to do something special for his birthday, so I decided to throw a surprise party. I hadn't planned one for him before.

It was pretty hectic for me trying to get everything ready. I'm used to having Judd as my assistant party planner. I did little things throughout the week leading up to the party and would hide all of the party supplies at friend's houses or throughout our house. I had it catered so I wouldn't have to worry about making food. When he finally got out of the house about 4:15 on Saturday afternoon, I ran around like crazy getting the house ready while trying to keep Charlotte out of trouble. When my poor friends showed up at the house I put them to work. Judd came in the door right on time and had a crowd of people waiting to say "Surprise!".

He said he was surprised, but I don't know for sure. He was able to see my emails at one point in the last month and he said he saw a suspicious subject line that said, "Judd's surprise 30th - SSHHHH, it's a secret." He said he didn't read the email, but I doubt he could really withstand the temptation.

It was also our friend Jimmy's 30th the following day, so my co-worker Candy made a cake for both Judd and Jimmy. The cakes were fabulous!

Friday, July 17

Drug of choice

I woke up in a bad mood this morning. I didn't fall asleep until late last night, then Charlotte woke up sometime before midnight, and then she woke up at 6:15. So, I was tired and cranky. I was mad at her for waking up early. After a couple cups of coffee I started to get out of my funk. We played. She laughed. I laughed. Then I found myself feeling happy. Caffeine is a pretty awesome natural drug, but smiles and laughs from your child will trump it every time.

Wednesday, July 15

Wide Angle

I took the trusty 50mm lens off of the camera a couple of days ago and have been playing around with the 18-70mm lens, but keeping it at 18mm. I have had a lot of fun with the wide angles, I think you may be seeing more of them.

I just couldn't resist posting this one - I know, heartless. What mother continues to photograph her daughter while she's having a meltdown because she just purposely spilled the 10th bottle of bubbles in 5 minutes? Me. Now you know.

Monday, July 13


Judd turns 30 today. We went out to dinner on Saturday night to celebrate. On the way to dinner, we passed a couple walking to the Glenlake pool with a couple of kids in tow. The kids were probably about 8 & 10, and obviously excited about going to the pool. Judd and I both saw them and chuckled. I think we laughed because you could just feel how excited they were to be going to the pool. The kind of excitement that kids have - the kind that makes your body jump up and down and skip down the sidewalk.

The moment got me thinking about what was to come for us in the next 10 years. During the next 10 years, Charlotte will be those kid's age.

For us, our 20s felt like there was always the next big thing - graduate from college, get a job, move out on your own, buy a house, get married, travel, have kids - there always seemed to be a goal. It is a lot of fun, but pretty exhausting.

So, we talked about what the next 10 years holds for us, as we both move into our 30's (I'll get there in 29 days). We decided that we are just going to enjoy the present. No major goals, just enjoy what we have. Maybe we'll have another kid, maybe we'll buy a bigger house, maybe we'll change jobs - who knows - but we don't feel pressure to do any of it. I think the next 10 years will be some of the best of our lives - and I can't think of anyone I'd rather spend them with.

Happy Birthday Judd!

Saturday, July 11

Books, Bed, and Daddy

Just a few short weeks ago, the scene above wasn't something Judd and I thought would happen easily. Charlotte was going through a phase and she only wanted me. It broke Judd's heart. He tried so hard to interact with her. We decided that he had to play a major part in the routine in the evenings.

Not that he hadn't been a part of the routine prior to this. Whenever he came home from work, he would sit by the bathtub during her bath, or play with her outside, or play with her before bed. But, he didn't really ever put her to bed. We thought that this would be a good thing for him to begin to do.

Our nighttime routine begins with a bath around 6:30 or 7:00. Then we "brush" Charlotte's teeth. (more like having toothpaste for dessert) Then chase her around the upstairs trying to diaper her, praying she doesn't pee before we wrestle it on. After we catch our breath, we put her pajamas on. Then we go get her cup of milk, read books in the rocker, and then time for bed.

The first few nights of the new plan were tough. After bath, he would take her up to her room to read. She would cry through the first few pages of the first book, but then settle down. After the 3rd night, she went up with him without a single tear. Then, this past Wednesday, Judd wasn't feeling good, so I said I'd put Charlotte to bed. He was laying on the couch and I asked Charlotte if she was ready to go up to bed. She stood up, walked over to Judd, grabbed his hand, turned to me and said "Byyyeee - Byyyeee". I told him that it looked like he was the chosen one.

He was beaming. He forgot about all about his headache. He took her little hand, scooped her up into his arms, and took her up to bed. I listened over the monitor as I made dinner. He reads the books to her in only the voices he can do. I couldn't stop smiling. I fall in love with him over and over again each day as I watch him fall more and more in love with our daughter.

Thursday, July 9

I'm not ready for this

She's really that tall already? How can that be? She isn't actually able to open the door yet, but I know it is only a matter of time. What am I going to do when I can't contain her behind a door?

I started People One at the Showcase School last night. I'm really pumped about this class. It is a class devoted to Portraiture. I think it is really going to stretch me in the creative aspects, not just the technical. I'm a technical person by nature, so I tend to focus on the numbers of photography - not the background, posing, etc. (I also shoot an 17 month old 100% of the time, so posing goes out the window).

Since this class is all about People, all of my assignments need people in them. Judd is not a willing model, and Charlotte is not a model that is very consistent. So, I would like to do a "Call for Models"! Is there anyone interested in modeling for some photo shoots?

I am looking for any type of model, high school seniors, children, babies, couples, etc. It would be about an hour of your time and any location of your choosing - your home, favorite park, pool, etc. What's in it for you? One free 5x7, one free 8x10, and a couple of digital images.

Just leave a comment if you are interested and we can work out dates & times. Thanks for your help!

Wednesday, July 8

The Squint

The squint has become Charlotte's signature face. She does this when someone has "wronged" her, especially the dog. She can't stand it when the dog is in her way. She looks at me with squinty eyes and points to the dog like I'm supposed to make the dog move. She does this when she doesn't know the answer to a question we ask her. She does this when she hurts herself. She seems to do it a lot. It's awfully cute.

Sunday, July 5

The 4th

We had a really nice July 4th. I ran my 8th Peachtree (time, 1hour 2 min). Then we watched the Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Championship, took a nap, and wrapped up the day with Dave, Erin, Ella, and Emma.

Even though it doesn't look like it, I promise they were having fun!


Wednesday, July 1


After a little romp through the sprinkler last night:

Charlotte enjoyed a drippy, sticky popsicle. That is until she ate almost the entire thing and the last bits dropped on the ground. In desperation she tried to pick up the puddle that the bits immediately became. When this didn't work, she had a meltdown of her own.