Our Noble Pursuits

Living the good life. And writing about it.

Thursday, December 27, 2012


I can't imagine a better age for experiencing Christmas with your little one than when she is one week shy of 18 months.  I say that now, and I'm sure next Christmas I will retract that statement and say 2 1/2 is the best age, and the next year, I'll correct myself yet again...but boy, was it fun to watch Annie this year.  She didn't get the concept of Santa or anything - she does tell you when asked that he says "Oh, oh, oh" (which is close enough, right?) and she points to him in pictures and ornaments and what not - but she liked unwrapping gifts and playing with each thing IMMEDIATELY if not sooner.  She also didn't understand the story of Jesus' birth, but she pointed to him in her Little People Nativity and said, "baby," so I think we at least have the ground work laid. :-)

Here is our Christmas in pictures, because they do a better job showing you how our girl's second Christmas went than I ever could in words.

We had Christmas at my mom's the Friday before the holiday, so Annie got to start her holiday fun early...
Reading Christmas books with Grandma
This girl and her cleaning supplies.  Her Grandma is teaching her well!
The word "love" is not at all too strong to describe Annie's feelings about this slide.

The day after our Christmas celebration at my mom's, when I got out the dollhouse my brother and sister-in-law gave her, it was as if Annie was seeing it for the first time again.

We then traveled to Fort Wayne to spend Christmas with David's family.  Annie got to hang out with her cousins, including sweet cousin Eliot, who is only 3 months older than her.  I'm telling you, we couldn't have planned this any better - these two are such fun to watch as they grow up together!

Building blocks with Eliot.

Helping out Santa with Papa.

It was a fantastic second Christmas with Annie!  We couldn't have asked for a better one.  Happy holidays to all of you - I hope your season has been blessed like ours!

Friday, December 14, 2012


Lots of things changed inside me once Annie joined the family. I have always been emotional and sensitive. I cried every day in first grade, for goodness sake. But when I added “mother” to my list of titles the emotional component of my personality really went into overdrive. And it has never shifted back down. If I had heard about a tragedy like what happened in Connecticut today seven or eight years ago, I would have been saddened. I would have been angered by the senselessness of it all. I would have felt bad for those families who are touched.

But hearing the news today, I was deeply affected. Profoundly.  Like haven't thought about much else kind of affected.  I cried, reading the reports of innocent children who lost their chance at a life of fulfilled dreams. Without really meaning to, I put myself in the place of those parents who are living a nightmare today. I wondered what I would do. I still wonder how they hold anything together.  I managed to convince myself that there was no reason for me to run from my office and drive as fast as possible to Annie’s daycare to pick her up hours early just so I could hold her and know she is okay. But it took some work.

And I am still angered, deeply saddened, and honestly, completely terrified by what happened today. I’m scared of what it means for the world we are raising our daughter in. I am frightened of things getting worse and incidents like these happening elsewhere. But mostly I am sobered by the reality that, no matter what I do, no matter how hard I try, I will never be able to insure that my daughter is completely safe from the evil of the world. And in this reality, all I know to do is say yet another prayer, begging for the safety and health of my little girl. Because only God can protect her from a crazy world.

Like so many of you, my thoughts are with those in Connecticut who are living through the unspeakable.  And prayers for peace - both for those families and for a world that seems at times to be in utter chaos.  May a change come soon, for the sake of my little girl and all of those children near and dear to us all.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

17 Months!

In this season of festive merriment (sounds like fun, eh?), we celebrated an additional “holiday” in the Noble household – or at least I did.  Annie turned 17 months old and I made my mental list of all of the things her 17th month brought us.  She continues to amaze me with how quickly she is learning new things, and I continue to be so appreciative of her school for the efforts they are making (with such positive results) to teach her, encourage her, and facilitate her development.  Frequently, she starts saying a new word or doing a new thing and I find out a day or so later that she learned it at school.  The fact that she is already learning in a school environment is exciting to me – and gives me something new to admire almost every day.

At 17 months old, our baby girl is…

Talkative – Oh my, is it a vocabulary explosion in our house these days.  Annie’s new favorite word is “no,” which she says in a way that actually sounds like she has given some thought to whatever you are requesting from her.  Sort of like an “I see your point, but no thanks” kind of way.  She has also very recently added “mine” to her vocabulary.  And “ball,” “doggie,” “bubble,” and “all done” continue to be favorites.  She repeats after us upon request sometimes now and says her own name.  I feel like she says a new word almost every day, and that is pretty amazing to me.

Quite the Hand Holder – These last few weeks, Annie has started taking us by the hand and leading us around.  She does this in all places except, of course, when it would actually come in handy to be touching her (like at a crowded and dark Christmas tree lighting or running down the sidewalk).  She likes to show us things – toys she is playing with at school when we pick her up at the end of the day, toys in her room at home, something the dog or cats are doing that she finds amusing or alarming.  Don’t get too comfortable sitting down at our house because, the next thing you know, Annie will be leading you to some other area of greater interest to her.

A Game Player – This month Annie has demonstrated an appreciation for little kid games, chants, and songs.  She loves Ring Around the Rosie (or “Ashy, Ashy” as she calls it…the “All fall down!” part is endlessly entertaining to her), Old MacDonald (we hear “yo-e, yo-e, yo-e,” which I believe to be her version of “E-I-E-I-O” several times a day), and the Itsy Bitsy Spider.  If you haven’t ever seen a just shy of 18-month old do the hand motions to Itsy Bitsy Spider you are missing out on one of the cutest actions known to man.  Let me know and I will attempt to coerce my daughter into performing the next time we see you.

Not a Baby Anymore – I know I have said countless times before on here that I can’t believe how fast Annie went from being a baby to a toddler, but I’m saying it again.  In her 17th month Annie became even more independent and has been demonstrating even more the intricacies of her personality.  She is sensitive and sweet.  She is determined and a little impatient.  She is a charmer, but a little bit shy.  She is a happy girl and loves making us laugh.  She gets frustrated when things don’t go her way.  She loves to dance and clap her hands and interjects at least one “yay!” into every song she hears.  And, of course, she is just as I dreamed she would be.  

We look forward to another Christmas with Annie – one where she understands that something exciting is going on, even if she doesn’t yet understand exactly what it is.