Baby, Bartos family, Greg & Morgan, Married Life, Squicciarini family

beach baby

Sophia’s typical finger-over-nose pose

Madison sent me a bunch of pictures from our visit to KY in July, and seeing them brought back fun memories of being there. {hello, Hacketts!} I haven’t seen Madison since then, but I’m hoping she is able to visit for Julianna’s wedding {NEXT MONTH} and stay with me again!

So… guess where the Bartos family is?! The beach! We are spending a few days at Myrtle Beach, and heading back to Charlotte on Sunday, just in time to pick up some fresh fish and celebrate Rosh HaShanah with friends! There was a lot to pack for this trip {and we only have one baby…} I have a whole new appreciation for my mom’s hard work in packing our family up to spend a week at Ocean Isle every summer! I think the carefree beach days are gone… but they’ve been replaced by responsibility, efficiency, and a firm intention to savor each moment here.

So far, Sophia LOVES the lazy river and the heated pool. She is curious about the ocean and determined to taste a handful of sand. She does not like Martin’s Restaurant. {grin}


{missed last week’s update – oops} Last two weeks at a glance :

  • watched Singin’ in the Rain with Greg {a feature film, quite rare for us}… had the songs stuck in my head for days
  • joined the Improving Birth rally on Labor Day to protest the unnecessary number of inductions and c-sections in the US {our first demonstration… so much fun!}; besides waving signs outside Presbyterian Hospital, we got to catch up with Jackie Kuschner! {my midwife}
  • purchased a Beaba Babycook {!!} on Craigslist… continued giving Sophia tiny amounts of pureed veggies at dinner time
  • had a celebratory dinner with the Squicciarini family {not sure if we were celebrating Labor Day or Peter’s return from almost a week in Tacoma, WA} of grilled kosher sausages
  • made Tyler Florence’s Berry Trifle for the first time! {with some assistance from Mary}
  • played a small part in hosting Julianna’s lovely bridal shower at Laura Guido’s home {got a turquoise Cuisinart immersion blender for Julianna, one of my favorite kitchen tools!}
  • spent a delightful afternoon with my cousin Sarah Stelzl {& received a delicious homemade gluten-free pumpkin pie from her!}
  • went out to dinner with the extended Squicciarini clan {the fam + Josh & Isaac} at one of their favorite places, Arooji’s Ristorante in Southpark
  • hosted an informal birthday dinner for Greg’s dad {Jet’s Pizza}
  • spent a Shabbat day with the Bella Torah Community, then came home and read all of Howard Rutledge’s book “In The Presence Of Mine Enemies” {an inspiring POW account} with Greg
  • celebrated our first Grandparents Day with Sophia’s first art project! We used ink pads to make cards with her handprints, and delivered them to Grandpa & Nonni in Fort Mill and Grandpa & Grandma in Matthews {thank you for the reminder, Mrs. Martin!}
  • discussed conspiracy theories {9/11?} with Pete… saw a few eye-opening YouTube videos
  • randomly saw Julianna at the new Whole Foods, did the 2nd Matthew lesson with my little Bible Study group, took Sophia to Southpark Mall for a quick errand, and… packed for the beach!
  • drove to Wilmington in search of a gluten-free sweet cinnamon bread for Rosh HaShanah {mission: successful}
  • shopped the Tanger Outlets and got Greg a few pairs of socks at Clarks {he couldn’t resist their lifetime warranty}
  • yet to come: an afternoon on the beach and a quiet Shabbat by ourselves – can’t wait!


Baby, Greg & Morgan, Married Life, Planning, Squicciarini family, Wedding

paddle boarding

stand-up paddle boarding on the Catawba River

Recently I’ve heard some attachment-parenters {I’m not one, but I have a few good friends who are} talk about the incredible bond they have with their babies, from co-sleeping, baby-wearing, and demand-feeding… and I want to note, for the record, that I have a pretty terrific bond with my own little girl! Sophia has never slept in my bed, and I don’t wear her in a sling all day long, but she’s absolutely a mommy’s girl. We LOVE to spend time together! She is just getting to the point of being affectionate, starting to give little hugs and wet nibbles that could pass for kisses. There are moments when I want to pick her up the second she starts fussing, or rock her to sleep every night, but in the end I have to do what I think is best for her. So far we can’t complain about the results! She’s the happiest baby I’ve ever seen – one that rarely cries, sings to us all the time, and always has a grin for strangers. I think the first big test of our parenting will come in the next few years though!

Week at a glance:

:: whisked Greg away for a birthday trip to the whitewater center {the longest we’ve ever left Sophia – my super babysitters watched her for over 5 hours!}… felt like we were newlyweds again {grin}

:: played ‘hide and seek’ with Sophia… she found a hiding place under the pillow where I could “find” her {hug!}

:: RSVP’d for a hugely important wedding on October 25

:: hosted a Bible study in my home {doing the book of Matthew from a Hebraic perspective with some wonderful ladies}

:: made wild blueberry & pecan granola with Mary

:: spent a typically productive evening with Grandma {my mom} – catching up, eating dinner, fixing the washing machine, & making baby food!

:: tested out a few veggie purees with Sophia… she’s a big fan of banana but doesn’t care for peas {yet!}

:: looked at more houses {we have some great possibilities!} and actually met with our realtor on Friday!

:: had a spontaneous family pizza date! + a visit to the brand-new Whole Foods

:: continued planning Julianna’s bridal shower {!!!}

:: met Christine at the renovated Stallings Park for walking + fiber-filled berry smoothies

:: had a pleasantly impromptu visit from Julianna in the middle of Shabbat preparations {the usual exchange: she brought me ginger-infused artisan muesli & trifle ingredients; I gave her an empty tupperware & a borrowed cookbook}

:: yet to come: hosting a new couple for dinner {Lori + Taylor} and then a quiet Shabbat by ourselves ~