Revisiting those baby days

I was just browsing some of my old videos and found this one of Little berry on her first Christmas morning. She was 4months old (and we were not using cloth diapers yet) and so stinkin' CUTE.
(this makes me want another baby soooo badly!)


The "Little Tyke" Moving Co.

In a few weeks, Pappa Starbucks and I will be moving again. We'll be packing up most of our possessions and putting them in storage for several months while I spend the summer with Little berry and some wonderful family, and he spends the summer working his butt off for Teach For America.
We've done this before. We've moved some four times since we've been together- first from college into an apartment together, then into a bigger apartment where we lived when Little berry was born, and then we stored all of our things for last summer and went to Europe. Then we moved into this apartment and have been here for not quite a year. Moving is hard, especially when you have a little one underfoot. I'm not sure it will ever be easy, but I've found that there are a few things that can make it not as rough.

(little berry shows her displeasure with our new digs on moving day)

1) Plan ahead- with lists of things that need to be sold/given away, things that need special care or to be returned to friends who've loaned them to you.
2) Try to use up all of the food you can several weeks prior to your move. We make a point to only buy fresh produce for about two weeks before we're moving, so we can use up all the other food.
3) If you can afford it, hire a cleaning crew to come behind you. This can save your deposit and a lot of frustration and energy. Tell them you will tip well if they earn you your deposit back and it will be worth it for both you and them.
4) Check Craigslist and local stores for free boxes. We were out a few weeks ago and saw a local chain restaurant unpacking new chairs and throwing the boxes away- all perfectly sized and identical. No one wants to pack into 40 different sized boxes.
5) Keep boxes handy for items you want to freecycle or take to the thrift store. No one wants to have to dig through already packed boxes for that thing that was going to be given away, nor are you going to want to keep everything.
6) Stock up on tape and markers ahead of time. You're never going to have enough!
7) Leave some boxes empty for the kid to play with while you pack. Maybe throw in a roll of tape. That's what they are going to want most and you don't want to have to keep pulling them out of yours!
8) Enlist friends to help for a few hours or to bring over food and drinks on the day of the move, because you're going to have tossed all that food and moving makes you hungry!

What are your tips for moving with a little one (or more)? I'd love to hear what you do to make moving with kids easier.


Blog Hugs, or "Blugs!"

Mama Christina from Diary of a Mom gave me a bloggy award! I am so flattered as it's my first!
The rules are:
One: Tell us about a memorable hug you’ve had. It can be a person, pet, whatever…
Two: “Hug” at least one other blogger or as many as you like.

Part One:

Wow, this is very hard for me. As many people know, I'm not a hugger. I'm not touchy-feely or lovey-dovey, and I have to remind myself to give physical affection, even to Pappa Starbucks. He, however, is very very much a hugger and is always asking for them and so is Little Berry. I think this will be a good exercise for me to write about hugging though since I've been trying to work giving them more....eagerly?
On my 20th birthday, Pappa Starbucks and I were meeting for breakfast. We were in college, we knew each other fairly well but were not involved. He was gushy-mushy-lovey-dovey-always-grinning around me and I knew he liked me a lot. One of the reasons I was at that point hesitating to date him was actually because of how exuberantly affectionate he was.
I got up that morning, showered and dressed in my favorite button down plaid shirt that my best friend always picked on me for wearing (good naturedly of course) and fixed a bowl of very crunchy granola to take to breakfast even though we were meeting in front of chic-fil-a (he's vegetarian and I didn't eat meat in front of him for a very long time) so I wouldn't be chowing down on a chicken biscuit while he ate his frosted flakes or oatmeal.
It was a chilly and frosty-aired morning, and I walked from my dorm to the cafeteria to meet this silly guy- trying to make sure my hair wasn't all frizzy from the sweater I was wearing, and generally wanting to look good but not have anyone know I was TRYING. It was, after all, my BIRTHDAY.
He met me inside the cafeteria with a cheerful grin and leaned in to hug me- "Happy Birthday!" he said. He smelled like Tide and toothpaste and I realized I had flutters- genuine nervous butterfly flutters in my stomach at that moment, and I knew we'd be together for a long long time.
And we've been together ever since!
Part Two:
I hug Ittybits and Pieces, The Milk Maid, Erin, Milk Donor Mama, and last but never least, my Friend Monica!


My city garden

We live in the city. In a cramped two-bedroom apartment with no yard. I wish it were bigger, but it's not, and that's not stopping me. I have- garlic, two tomatoes, a yellow squash, a spearmint, four strawberry plants and a cantelope, rhubarb, a pot of wildflowers, ten basil plants started from seed) and a few soapnut sprouts. I don't have fancy pots and I may have *pilfered* my soil- but I've got what I can.
I also have a clothesline for my clothdiapers and a kiddie pool for little berry all in the same space. Because some things, I cannot compromise for. As a side note- if I'd planned better, I would have completely planted all of these in a deeper kiddie pool. They're $15 (the biggest ones, which is twice as deep as ours) and perfect for the plants I have.

Things I'd like to have but don't, and can make do without- cucumber, bell peppers, and watermelon.
What do you just have to have no matter what? What are you willing to be cramped to hold on to, or to give up other things for?