8 months old

Si’s eighth month is pretty exciting already, and we aren’t even a week in.  We just spent five days on a lake in the sunshine.  It was wonderful!  No plans, no running around, no sightseeing.  Just relaxing, Garner family style.

Silvano P is up to seven teeth with the eighth on the way.  Strangers keep making him smile and then commenting on his toothy grin.  He says Mama, meow, moo, and randomly hollers and screeches at the top of his lungs.  He pulled up to standing twice, mastered the army crawl, and rocks on hands and knees.  He found his voice last week, which made for an interesting long car ride to and from the lake!  He is up to 18 pounds and 27 inches long.  He’s our little big boy!  We love him.

We are in the process of packing up the house and waiting for inspection results to come through.  If all goes well, we are set for closing August 19th in Bloomington and August 20th in Lafayette.  Woohoo!  Once things are a little more final, I will post pictures of the Victorian mess we just got ourselves into.  I can’t wait to get my hands on it!  I am done with work, and as a going away present, they hired movers to load and unload us on either end.  We are so, so excited about this, and I am sure our families are as well.  No more heavy lifting!

Without further adieu, here are some pictures.


This week, we are going to have company!  Si will get to play with Ethan and Eric Michael while Nicole and I schmooze and pack up a few totes.  We can’t wait!



So, Tim and I were talking about his homework assignment last night.  He had to construct a positivity plan (no, positivity isn’t a word–take it up with his professor) to help him in his future classroom.  Intrigued, we each researched on respective laptops to come up with some meaningful and helpful tactics for a more positive outlook.  I found this on Pinterest (of course I did) and it really made me stop and think about my attitude toward many aspects of my life.


I don’t know about predestined “paths” or “callings”, but I think the nature of humanity is such that we are ever-learning creatures and that, in hindsight, every experience is fundamental for some part of our development.  I trust that things will work out in a way that will serve me well and I let the rest go.  I used to consider myself a pretty zen person alongside that glorious trust in the universe to make sense of my life.  I worked really hard to know myself well enough to moderate my emotions.  I didn’t get upset, I could see others’ hurtful actions as something they were dealing with that wasn’t necessarily personal, I could let things go and be straight with myself about what I needed or wanted to change.  Somewhere in the middle of all the busy, it’s so easy to forget the simple practices that keep me feeling grounded, stress free, and ready to enjoy life.  Brace yourself, because I am back on the positivism bandwagon, and I think you should be, too.  Don’t believe me?  Watch The Secret and then contemplate the importance of the idea that “thoughts become things”.  It will change your life.

Forgive us

We’re in ultimate transition mode and the blog has been admittedly neglected.  Sorry!

This week, we have a lot going on.  We are doing paperwork for the mortgage, submitting offers, withdrawing offers, awaiting 2 inspections, getting two baby teeth, ending my job, and gearing up for family vacation this weekend at the lake with my family.  Someday soon, I will actually start packing up this house.  I can’t even go there right now.

This past weekend was a blur.  Our house in the woods is pending an August 19th closing date.  You know what that means?  We have to move.  Somewhere else.  Soon.  And so, with carefully planned car napping, we scooted off to Lafayette to house hunt this weekend.

We found a house we loved, a house we liked immensely, and two duds, which isn’t bad for a whirlwind jaunt of househunting in my book.   We have methods for choosing houses from afar–if you are interested, shoot me an email and I will break it down for you.  Anyway, after the inspection report on the much loved 40s bungalow with beautiful dark woodwork, we kindly walked away.  Gutting the plumbing and electric isn’t really in our DIY to do list, and getting a loan on such a money pit isn’t possible, so the cash offer plus intense repairs chalked it right off our list.  Goodbye, dream layout and woodwork (says Meg).  Goodbye, moneypit (says Tim).

The second house is bigger, closer to the park, in a quieter and equally safe neighborhood, and has no major structural/repair issues aside from cosmetic.  Speaking of cosmetic, it is covered not only in ostentatious wallpaper and floral carpets over the original wood floors, but also more spindles and turned dowel embellishments than you can imagine.  It is totally blocking my interior design Chi.   We have an offer in and will know by tomorrow whether or not it’s ours.  Stay tuned.

After Lafayette, we headed to my parents.  Three detours and three hours later with a devastated child, we spent the afternoon swimming and visiting and it was so relaxing.  Tim and I both needed it terribly.  We got to visit my grandpa who is recovering from a wicked fall, and Silas always loves hearing his deep voice, although Papaw was totally trumped by the pets this time around.  Si was motivated enough to crawl a little bit in an effort to get a handful of that soft dog.  I love it when he shows off his tricks.  Silas, not the dog.

Sunday, Silas and I made the rounds.  We had breakfast with Aubrey, coffee with the family of former nanny babe, Amelia, who is now 5!, a visit with Grandma Janet and Papaw Jim, lunch with Papaw and Leanne and Kathryn, a visit with Dan and Robyn and their growing brood, and then came home to dinner with the best neighbors ever.  Elizabeth made linguine with artichokes, fresh yellow tomatoes, chantrelle mushrooms from our woods, and fresh basil and parsley.  As usual, her cooking was to die for.  Silas had his first pasta and loved it!  Dinner was followed by a little bluegrass, which Silas adores.  He clapped and sang along with his buddy, Seamus.  Happy baby!


Poor Si has gotten two more teeth this week (we are up to SIX teeth) and he is still working on those top two that refuse to come through.  He is such a trooper about the teething.  Happy all day, but restless all night.  The poor kid needs some decent sleep, so here’s hoping family vacation this weekend wears him out enough to sleep despite the teeth.  We are so excited!  Oliver said “Meggy, when do I get to see my baby?”  I think the boys will be equally excited to see each other.  Darling.     Bring on some lakeside relaxation!  This little family is SO ready.

7 months

We have a 7 month old.  Crazy.  He is such a little human and we are enjoying him so much these days.  Silas is making some major strides in becoming a toddler, and it’s sort of freaking me out.

He has FOUR teeth now–two on center bottom, and two on top that are only on the left side…  he’s going to be a looker until those other two come down!

He is army crawling about a foot in any given direction, which won’t last long.  He is going to be chasing MamaCat all over the house in a matter of days.  

He is sitting for long periods of time and knows how to get down to his belly to grab some fetching toy that catches his eye.

He is eating like a monster!  Bananas, sweet potatoes, and peas are still the favorites.

He is finally on a solid sleep/wake schedule after six months of slumber chaos for all parties.  We are getting a few great naps a day and sleeping 12 hours at night, usually with just one wake up at 3am.  Booyah!

Blowing a lot of slobbery bubbles and giving lots of kisses, but still only saying “Mama” at this point.  He did start waving when we say “hi” on and off, and he squeals hideously when he is ready for a change of scenery.  Oh, boy.


Good job, baby!  Keep on growing!

Nothing says party like a wedding, a namesake, a swim, and a tooth

A little slow on the uptake here, sorry this is so late.  The weekend began on Thursday for us, which was lovely!  We drove to Columbus, Ohio to meet Peter and Barbara for lunch, and then later for vino at our hotel.  Peter is my professor from my studies in Rome and also the one who lent us his flat when we honeymooned in Italia.  He also happens to be Si’s namesake and one of our very favorite human beings on the planet.  Needless to say, we had a fantastic visit.  Despite the fact that we were on the road yet again by 7am to drive to the middle of Illinois, we are so glad we went.


This was a big weekend for the Ballard clan because Sara and Derek got married this weekend!  As her maid of honor said, “neither rain, broken zipper nor sprained ankle could put a damper on love”.  There were wardrobe malfunctions.  There was a mishap with Heather’s espadrille resulting in ice packs.  There were torrential downpours just before the ceremony as we finished pictures, causing the whole shindig to move to the reception hall a half hour away.  But you know, it was all fine and beautiful in the end.  Tim and I decided we really liked having everyone seated and ready to start celebrating during the ceremony.  It was easy and comfortable and fun.  I lost my phone for a large part of the day (shocking, I know) so there are just a few pictures so far:


Silas was a champion the entire weekend.  He had his first swim AND got his third tooth.  We drove 975 miles in four days and he slept through most of them.  He slept well in the hotel rooms after the first night and stayed up way too late every night without much fussing.

A few people have asked how we approached the weekend with an infant with two parents in the bridal party.  My approach to Si’s schedule this weekend was to squeeze five 45 minute naps in while driving to and from the venues instead of his usual three long naps, and then to be flexible about nighttime as long as he was happy.  I am a big proponent for keeping kids on their schedules for the most part while traveling.  I was raised that way, I have seen it work in all of my nannying in the last decade, and I just think kids thrive when they know what to expect and get enough sleep.

This weekend was an exception and we did what we could to keep him rested, then just went with it.  The thing about visiting family is that everyone is so excited to see him that they don’t want the night to end, even when he is exhausted and miserable.  Even then, the requests are accompanied by comments about how they don’t mind if he is crying.  That’s nice and all, but a crying kid needs something, so it really is about the baby and not the visiting at that point, which was a hard thing all around this weekend.  Making sleep the priority paid off for him, because the wedding day he was a happy, social baby the entire very long day despite only getting three crappy naps instead of five.  Best baby ever.


We got home late Sunday night and found out last minute there was supposed to be a showing from 6-7pm.  We scurried around and tidied our travel bags that we foolishly hoped to leave in the middle of the living room floor for the night, and then they didn’t show up.  The neighbors said we had several drive by’s every day that we were gone and we are at 15+ showings in under three weeks.  Monday hummed this same tune with three showings during the 2 o’clock hour.  To get out of the house, we all went to town to have Turkish food at Anatolia.  Silas especially loved that we sat on floor cushions.  I should have snapped a picture, but I didn’t.  Sorry!  Today we are back to the grind and it feels like we have had a week off, so we’re ready.