Easter pictures

I remember when we first had baby Abraham and I took him to get his picture taken at Kiddie Kandids or Target, I always went through such agony trying to choose which print to order. Coming from parents who always ordered the "E" package on school picture day (one 5x7 print), of course I knew I would only end up with the free 8x10 or whatever my coupon was for. But it broke my heart to leave behind all the other cute shots of my darling little boy!

These many years later, you'd think that taking our own photos would have solved all my problems, but as we have a finite amount of wall space (not to mention picture frames), I still have to make the hard decisions when deciding which pictures to print. And sometimes there are funny, strange pictures that I can't really justify choosing (or spending much time editing)…but I love them anyway. So it eases the pain to know that I can preserve all of my favorites forever on the blog! 

Also, Easter is my favorite holiday! So, without further ado, enjoy (or forgive, if you'd rather) these millions of pictures. (And here are last year's, should you find yourself wanting more!) :)
Handsome Abe.
Abe with bunny
Oldest. Youngest.

Toronto trip, part II

Ice on Lake Ontario
Besides Sam doing what he actually went there to do, we got to see a few other things in Toronto. First of all we were flying into Pearson Airport, which as any good Rush fan can tell you, gives you the "YYZ" code on your luggage tag. So that was exciting and merited a text to my brothers promising to find a Rush museum if there was one and bring back some drumsticks from Neil Peart. (Sorry. Failed on all counts, more's the pity.)
Since Sebby is currently super into airplanes, I was taking lots of pictures for him. We saw some 747s in San Francisco, and even an Emirates A380 (both big exciting planes, apparently; I don't mean to know these things but I can't help it).
I had gotten babywearing advice from my friend Melissa, and borrowed a Moby wrap, since I knew there would be lots of walking around with Teddy. I watched YouTube tutorials of how to put it on until I finally got pretty good at it. People kept commenting on how effortlessly I donned it and carried Teddy, and I would say, modestly, "It's not as hard as it looks"—trying to imply that I'd been at it for years, thinking that made me look cool—and then Sam would say, "She just barely learned how!" thinking THAT made me look cool. Ha! Anyway, the wrap was great. It kept us both warm and I loved having a baby snuggled up on my chest. 
I wasn't sure how it would be to fly with a six-week-old, but we were lucky! Theodore was so great. He liked flying (why shouldn't he; he was nursing most of the time!) and gave us lots of happy smiles, and slept when he wasn't smiling. Everyone in the world liked him. Of course.

Easter Egg Hunt

We always hide real eggs (hard-boiled ones) on Easter afternoon, and it was a beautiful warm day for it. Our brown, spiky grass leaves something to be desired (we haven't started watering it yet) but it didn't deter the kids! I stayed inside and cooked dinner. I guess we mostly keep doing this hunt for the little ones, but the big ones sure enjoyed helping them find eggs. Such little cuties!

Niagara Falls in Winter

The day before Sam's workshop, our hosts took us to see Niagara Falls, a couple hours away from Toronto. I didn't know the falls would be so beautiful in the winter. I loved it! The ice and snow made everything look so dramatic. It was amazing. I went to Niagara Falls with my family when I was probably about 12 or 13, when it was summer, and hot, and we stood close to the water so the mist would cool us off a little. Experiencing the place in the winter time was so different!

I was pleased to have a chance to wear the furry shapka I got in Moscow. I do wear it at home in Utah, but it feels that it is only fulfilling its highest, holiest purpose when it's very cold outside. I hate to insult it with merely semi-cold weather.
Our photographer liked my furry hat and kept taking pictures of it. It IS a particularly fine hat. And in case you're wondering what Teddy was doing inside that bundle, it was this:
Little sweetie pie.

Workshop teachers. A lovely assortment of people.

Sleepy babies

Babies are so sweet when they are sleeping, and especially when they're sleeping ON you. Before I had a phone that took pictures I never got to document this phenomenon, so now that I often have the phone camera handy I am making up for lost time. Most of these were taken during March, and now Theo already looks older (*sniff*).

Toronto trip, part 1

I love this picture so much. This IS Sam.
One of the really cool things about being married is that you get to become a sort of appendage to all the cool things your spouse is, and does. I thought a lot about this while I accompanied Sam to a workshop he was doing in Toronto, because I really was just tagging along: since I didn't know anyone there, nor they me, I basically existed in terms of being "Sam's wife" (or possibly "that cute baby's mother"). There were lots of cool women there; smart, talented, well-known, each amazing in her own right—and it made me realize how lucky I am that I so enjoy being "Sam's wife."

I did wonder, briefly, as I watched those women, if I should be more anxious to be known and respected on my own merits? But it's not that I've given up on doing and being interesting things myself—it's just that I find so much personal fulfillment in watching Sam excel. I love to hear his students talk about how he has changed their lives. I love to see people laugh at his jokes or enjoy his conversation. It feels just as good as—better than—when I excel at something. If he's doing something I can help him with directly, like writing a talk, I love that; and if he's doing something I can help him with indirectly, like keeping the baby quiet so he can work, I love that; and if he's doing something I can only just watch and marvel at, like—well, like almost everything art-related—then I love that too.

People sometimes kind of snicker at the whole "behind every successful man is a good woman" thing, and I understand that it might be said condescendingly or dismissively, but to me, it's a welcome challenge. I love being a good team. I want to be the one who helps Sam succeed in what he does. And I like the idea that when he's doing cool things and being humble and happy while doing it, other people might not even know what's making him so happy, but I'll know: that it's ME. Or, you know, at least partly me. And even though I know I can't actually take that much credit for him because he'd be an amazing person anyway—as I always say, I did have the good sense to marry him (twice), so that's got to count for something!

All that to say, I always love being with Sam when he's working, and I had a great time on this quick trip to Toronto. My mom was awesome enough to watch the rest of our kids at home ("behind every successful man and the good woman behind him, is a helpful grandmother"), and Teddy, who came with us, was sleepy and sweet and snuggle-y and probably responsible for a Baby Boom in Ontario about nine months hence. There wasn't time for much sight-seeing, but what there was was lovely, and when Sam wasn't working we got to play with Teddy, and I thoroughly enjoyed just being in a new place around a bunch of interesting new people.

The other five presenters at the workshop were impressive people. Sam was practically in raptures as he described to me how famous and inspirational and genre-defining they all were: comic book artists and painters and animators he'd looked up to for years. I didn't know all of their work (though I knew some: the director of "Tarzan" and the director of "Brave" were both there), but I was impressed with how down-to-earth and humble they all were. We spent a lot of time talking and driving and eating together as a group, and everyone seemed just as friendly and interested in me as they were in anybody else. It was very affirming.

Keith, the photographer, took so many awesome pictures (there are more here). I think he made everything seem even better than reality. He caught all these personal, warm, surprising little glimpses of interactions between people. I loved seeing Sam, and the whole weekend really, through Keith's lens.


Birds and Bon Mots

(NOTE: I looked for some unifying thread I could use in this post, but in vain. So, don't fret if you find yourself a bit discombobulated, reading it. I'm just trying to post various pictures that seemed like they needed posting.) 

Sometimes there are so many birds flying around. I wonder what on earth they are doing? They dive down and glide along close to the ground, then they line up and rest on the rooftops, and then—
at some unknown signal, they all swoop off again!

I guess this shirt is getting too small for Malachi now. But he doesn't want to stop wearing it, ever. And can you blame him? I told him we could put it into a quilt someday.
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