Thursday, December 31, 2009

December 31, 2009 ~ Blue Moon on New Years Eve

I just received this e-mail from Vanessa - looks like there are some even more amazing statistics regarding our rare Blue Moon/ New Years event! Thanks V!


On 31 December, the Blue Moon will dip into Earth's shadow for a partial lunar eclipse. The event is visible from Europe, Africa and Asia. At maximum eclipse, around 19h24 Universal Time, approximately 8% of the Moon will be darkly shadowed.

Blue Moons are rare (once every 2.5 years).
Blue Moons on New Year's Eve are rarer still (once every 19 years).

How rare is a lunar eclipse of a Blue Moon on New Year's Eve? A search of NASA's Five Millennium Catalogue of Lunar Eclipses provides an approximate answer. In the next 1000 years, Blue Moons on New Year's Eve will be eclipsed only 11 times (once every 91 years).

So this is a rare event, indeed."

I took this photo of the Waxing Gibbous moon on the 29th when we had a rare break in the "gray dome" over West Michigan... just in case it is too cloudy to see the full moon tonight. I was indoors, and the antique glass in this old house gave the photo a nice blurry feel - kind of how we feel with all these sleepless nights!

We are wishing everyone a very healthy and happy New Year! We will probably ring in the New Year in between diaper changes and feedings tonight while praying for three consecutive hours of sleep

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

December 29, 2009 ~ Beautiful Blur

Wow! What an amazing blur the last 10 days have been! When I walked into our home office this morning I laughed when I saw the calendar we keep on the wall. It was like time stopped on the 17th when I went into labor. We simply had not crossed out another day since our "big event" began, and every moment since has been busy learning about our little man.

This is the last photo of me pregnant, from the morning of the 17th when Papou Jim and I posed. Hard to believe that later that day the pregnancy would (begin to) wind down, and the parenting chapter would begin.Starting that night, the next days were very much what the term suggests, "labor." The beautiful thing about it is that in hindsight it is all a blur. I have already been asked if I would do it again, the answer - unquestionably YES! With the amazing support of Michael, Angela, and our wonderful midwife "the journey" was a rewarding one. And look what I have to show for it! This is a picture I took of Miles on Christmas Eve, he was five days old.

As much as I love to document, it has been impossible to record all of the precious moments of the last ten days. I have these extremely vivid little memories that I feel will always be burned into my mind. For example I will never forget Miles meeting his Yia Yia's when he was just a few hours old. They came into the room and the sunlight was filtering through the blinds, their red hair was glowing in the light in contrast to the green plants, and it was just a soft sweet moment that will always be cherished. Then later that evening my parents arrived and I will always remember them marching down the hallway towards the bedroom trailing blue balloons, flowers, and wine! It was like a parade for Miles! I am so excited to watch them fall into their role as grandparents and so very thankful for all the food and support they have supplied lately.

The flowers came in a little red wagon and they are still looking pretty on the kitchen table. They make me think of this Spring, and I really can't wait until Miles can begin planting a garden with us at home, and also helping Paw Paw Laughter with his garden in Ada.

Another sweet moment when we loaded Miles into his car seat for the first time... can you believe we were ever that tiny! Just look at those little feet!

I also love this image of four day old Miles trying on the hat we bought for him from a wonderful little knitting shop in Muizenberg. We kind of had an idea when we traveled to South Africa that it would not be too long before we set off into the adventure of parenting.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

December 26, 2009 ~ Visitors!

When we woke up this morning I congratulated Miles on being a week old. Though I can guarantee he has no idea what the difference is between a week and a nap :-) But, what a week it has been! With the Holiday Season upon us we have been blessed to have family and friends arrive from all corners to meet Miles! Here are some of the visitors he had over the last week!

When he was one day old Aunt Sarah and Uncle David met Miles. Then on the 23rd they helped us out immensely by chauffeuring us to the county clerks office to apply for Miles' birth certificate. His first outing would never have been as successful without their help! We look forward to many more adventures with them in the future!

Mere and Anthony also flew through on the 20th, and their brief but beautiful visit was much appreciated! Before they left to return to Seattle Mere managed to love me up with a much needed massage and Anthony took the family photo that was posted earlier. Thanks friends, we miss you already!
On the 21st Tasha, Mikaela, and Angela stopped in to see Miles. Angela was an amazing assistant as she attended the birth and helped Micheal and our midwife care for me! I was with her when Mikaela was born almost ten years ago, and she was able to return the favor. It was such a wonderful gift to have her help and we are forever grateful!

Theo Dan arrived on the 22nd and shared some quality time with his nephew. I know Miles is already dreaming about the jam sessions he will have with his papa and his uncle!

That same day Miles caught up with his Nonna Linda and Great Grandmother Joye. While the matriarchs from the Laughter side loved him up mama was able to take a much appreciated rest. I know my mother is in love because she even helped out by watering all of my house plants while I napped! We have also been enjoying all of the delicious food she prepared for us... and I hear there is more to come... YUM!

Yia Yia Linda has also helped by providing one of her amazing salads and of course loving on Miles every chance she gets!

Friday, December 25, 2009

December 25, 2009 ~ Our First Christmas

We spent our first Christmas as a family quietly "cacooned" at home. We started the day with a decadent waffle breakfast and we swear food just tastes better when you are exhausted!  Michael played some guitar for Miles and then we took a much needed loooong nap as the uncharacteristically rainy weather pounded on the roof. Our sweet baby slept in the living room in his new cradle from Yia Yia Linda as we ate breakfast.  He was swaddled in a kikoi (cotton wrap) we got with Vanessa in South Africa. Yia Yia Liz was able to sneak up to share some awake time with her great grandson Miles.

December 25, 2009 ~ Announcing Miles

We wish everyone the happiest of holidays and we would like to thank you for all the love and support we have received over the last six days! We have been enjoying this special time getting to know our newest family member. He is truly precious and we can't wait to share a lifetime learning about the world through his eyes.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

December 20, 2009 ~ Happy Family

Hello All~
After a long but rewarding labor Miles Alexander Triant was born at home Saturday December 19th at 5:13 am. He weighs 9lbs and 4oz, measures 20" long, and is already the light of our lives.
We will send more pictures soon, but please enjoy this first family photo taken today.
Thank you all for your love and support during this special time in our lives!
Sally, Michael, and Miles

Thursday, December 10, 2009

December 10, 2009 ~ Photographs

As I continue to “nest” my cleaning and organizing has taken the form of digging through and sorting drawers of old photographs. Considering that we have known each other for seventeen years now, and I have always been obsessed with documenting through photography, we have tons of pictures together! Needless to say I dug up some treasures as I cleaned, so I will share them with you.

For those of you who knew us when, you will probably get a huge kick out of this photo from 1994 when Michael and I were in high school and painting the mural. I was a senior and he was a sophomore, and I still can’t believe they let us paint that provocative image of the “Tree of Life” in the school stairwell.

Then after years of being apart, we finally managed to get back in the same state and get married in 2005! I look in those faces and I can still see the kids we were. I feel so blessed to have already shared so many memories with the love of my life. We have traveled the world, started projects close to home, cooked countless meals together, and he still makes me laugh like I’m a teenager!

As this imminent birth draws nearer I can’t help but imagine what the rest of the photographs of our life will look like. Our “family portraits” are about to grow from two to three members. I wonder who this person is… this person that we will cherish, and inevitably take thousands of photographs of! I can't wait to meet him or her, and to share our first family portrait with you!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

December 6, 2009 ~ Building Our Nest

One of the first entries I wrote in my journal after finding out we were pregnant was on April 20, 2009. “We have been keeping a secret for sixteen days now! I will never forget the morning of April 4th when two Mourning Doves announced their arrival at our bedroom window and something about this prompted me to take a pregnancy test. Since then I have been slowly adjusting to this new reality, and this morning there are two more birds here to share my secret with. Outside my office window an American Robin is building her nest. It is a perfect wet rainy day and each time she returns with a beak full of mud she turns around in the nest to stomp it around inside. Each time she leaves a male House Finch flies up to inspect her work, and perhaps steal some of the soil. A strange combination! I am glad she has chosen this place to raise her young; I will enjoy watching the progress outside my window as the spring turns into summer.

As I write the Robin has gone back into the rain in search of supplies…nesting. I suppose I am going to be doing the same.”

Both species of birds did in fact build nests and raise their young right outside our window. We watched as the male returned with a partner and built a nest. The Robin’s eggs hatched first, and they LOUDLY proclaimed their residency with their very characteristic song. Then later the finches fledged. Now the nests sit vacant. As I look out today the snow swirls around them. The seasons have changed, and changed again, and now it is our turn to nest!

Our nest for "Baby T." has taken the form of this beautiful sage green nursery. With the help of many family members we have purchased a crib and a cradle. The cross stitched blanket in the crib was handmade by my Grandmother and her twin sister. The changing table that was a hand me down has been repainted and filled with all the cloth diapering necessities. The rocker was my great grandmother's. The little red chair came from (soon to be) Uncle David and Aunt Sarah. The bronze baby shoes in the window were Michael's and the white ones were mine. The closet is full of the most precious tiny gender-neutral clothes! And, we finally found the perfect rug for the room. The artwork is an eclectic blend from our travels, including a mobile from our dear South African friend Vanessa Nixon and a photograph of Table Mountain at night taken by her talented sister Andy Nixon.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

December 5, 2009 ~ First Snow!

I know that yesterday (12/4) is a day I will remember for years to come! We awoke to a morning painted white, the freshly fallen snow crisp and covering the city. It was the perfect kind of fluffy snow that sticks to all the limbs of trees like frosting. The air was calm and as the day went on still more flakes floated gently down totaling almost 11 inches.

Angela came over to visit and we decided to go for a walk in the snow. Then we decided to walk to Marie Catrib’s and have an early lunch! We were quite a sight, me thirty nine weeks pregnant treading through the deep snow covered sidewalks, and Angela marching in front of me (forgetting that I move at a snail’s pace these days) leading the way. We took the camera along and I snapped some photos. A cardinal graced us as he grazed on the freshly frozen crab apples.

As we walked it began to snow again, and I did not bring the camera case along for our trip. Having no room left in my own coat (due to my expansive belly) I asked Angela to tuck the camera in her jacket. This prompted people waiting for the bus to comment that, “we were two cute pregnant ladies out for a walk!” For some reason this struck me as incredibly hilarious and I clutched my huge midsection as I doubled over laughing hysterically. I think everyone thought I might give birth right there in the snowy streets of GR. Needless to say I did not, and the almost three mile round trip walk did nothing to induce labor.

Another interesting snow event happened at the same time in Houston, TX. I spoke with my Grandmother yesterday and she said she did in fact witness snowflakes flying in the Lone Star State. The National Weather Service said this was the earliest snow in Houston’s history, and only the fourth time it has snowed in the last fifteen years. I remember one snowfall there when I was a child before we moved to Michigan. We made tiny little snowballs and placed them in the freezer. Little did I know that I would be surrounded by snow one day… and now I will have a winter baby to play in the snow with!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

December 12, 2009 ~ Blue Moon

Well the naturalist and sky watcher in me has been waiting for this day to come! Today (12/2) is the first full moon of December 2009. I know this month will be exceedingly special, not only because it is the month our new baby will be born, but it seems the “stars” (or rather moons) have aligned to confirm it! December of 2009 has two full moons, and our baby will inevitably be born between them. The next full moon will be on New Years Eve.

As many of you know I am infatuated with the lunar cycle, so I will share a little of my obsession. A lunar month lasts 29.53 days. This is how long it takes for the Moon to make a cycle though all of her phases: New Moon, Waxing Crescent, First Quarter, Waxing Gibbous, Full Moon, Waning Gibbous, Third Quarter, Waning Crescent, and New again. Because the months of our annual calendar average thirty days there is generally only one full moon a month. But, every now and then – once in a “blue moon” to be exact, there will be a month with two full moons!

Every month’s full moon has a name. When a month has two full moons, the second moon is called a “Blue Moon.” Blue moons are rather rare, and that is why the saying goes “once in a blue moon.” In fact they only happen once every 2.72 years. The next time we will see a blue moon will be August of 2012.

So enjoy the full moon rising tonight, in West Michigan it will be around 5:20 pm and set tomorrow morning at 8:29 am. The December full moon is known as the Full Cold Moon or the Full Long Nights Moon. We will be watching expectantly if the clouds disperse, but we can also just gaze at my huge belly that is beginning to look like a full moon. If there is one thing I can guarantee it is that sometime before the Blue Moon on December 31st there will be a new person in our lives to share the natural wonders of the lunar cycle with!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

November 18, 2009 ~ Patiently Waiting

Welcome to our blog! I am very excited to be beginning this so all of our family and friends that are far away can watch the progress as our family grows! This picture is from the (very slow) hike we took last weekend at the Blandford Nature Center.
Add Image