cleaning and sitting

We have recently recovered from a bug infestation. I have no idea what kind of bugs they were, but they were littler than ants, easily squished, and everywhere! Every time I saw one, my skin crawled. But I tried to stay positive. Right before killing one I thanked it for not being a mouse. I really, really, really, reeeaaallly HATE mice. (As in, when my Boston apartment had mice, I set up a tent on my bed and lived in that. It was better than risking being run over by a mouse in my sleep!!) But the bugs inspired us to clean, clean, clean. We discovered they probably came from the flour and spice cabinet, so we completely overhauled those:
 

And now they look like this!

I like to stare at my bug free, organized cabinets in my free time. Lydia seems to like it too!

We have been on a massive de-clutter and organize ourselves kick, and so we got rid of a bunch of books and reduced down to one bookshelf. We have so much more space! Lydia loves staring at our remaining ROYGBIV (remember your rainbow order?) bookshelf:

And last night Lydia decided she wanted to be a big girl and sit at the table. She was really sad until she got to try out her new seat:

An elf and a picture update

So you will now think I have gone completely cuckoo. First I claimed my baby talked and now I’m going to write a post about being visited by an elf. Oh, you don’t believe in elves? Me neither–at least, I thought I didn’t. After Lydia’s little talking escapade in the car (which scared the bajeebers out of me), I was ready to believe anything. And what do you know, as soon as we opened the door to our home, there on the living room table was a vase of flowers, a letter, and the framed copy of my mom’s wedding poem she wrote for us.

As a safety fanatic, my first thoughts were, sadly, quite panicky: How did this person get into our building? What if they come again and steal the baby? Is there someone in the condo RIGHT NOW??

But when I read the letter, it was a very sweet note congratulating us on our first year of marriage. The letter was quite touching, but I remained alarmed. The letter was signed by “Bob, the Anniversary Elf.” Bob, the Anniversary Elf? I read the letter out loud to Abe, who seemed delighted and unconcerned at the security threat posed to us by the elf breaking in.

“Honey,” he said, “what’s an elf going to do to us? Give us more flowers?”

I didn’t answer, and instead retreated to the bedroom to reread the letter and look up the latest door locks on the internet.

Abe came in smiling. “Ok, ok,” he admitted, “you don’t have to worry about our safety. The elf had some help from me. Why do you think I wanted to get that last load of laundry before we left?” His eyes twinkled.

“Are you the elf?” I demanded.

“Nope!” He said cheerfully. “But I met him when I let him in. All I know is he was about four feet tall, wore a funny hat and some green boots. He said he wants to keep visiting us on our anniversary.”

I didn’t believe him, of course. Elves don’t exist! (Just like babies don’t talk.) “Come on,” I pressed. “Tell me who the elf is!”

Abe shook his head. The most I could get out of him for the rest of the evening was that the elf wore green boots.

In his letter, the elf mentioned that he was top secret and wished to remain anonymous. He likes to surprise couples on their anniversary. But he talked to us about things on the blog, so I figured I’d post an entry and ask the elf if it would be okay to blog about him. Guess what! The elf emailed me soon after! Here’s his email:

Lily,As you have noticed by now, I and my scouting team do read your blog.  Blog-reading is one of our preferred ways of locating couples for me to visit.  You may have wondered if I visit every married couple on their anniversaries, but I only visit some.  There is a rigorous screening process.  Think about it, millions upon millions of married people, and only one anniversary elf.  I mean sure, I can do about 15 visits per day, times that by 365 days in a year and I get in just under 5000 couples per year.  Factor in that I can only add new couples when other couples are gone, and you realize there aren’t that many openings from year to year for new families for me to visit.  You and Abe are very lucky!!  Our scouting department is always on blogging websites to find couples that we feel would be fun to visit.  They must be a couple that is totally fun and in-love, and also a couple that seems committed enough to make it through hard times.  There is nothing that hurts more than seeing one of the couples I visit not work out.  I try really hard to pick the one’s that I think will make it.  So anyway, after we’ve identified couples for me to visit, there is one final step: someone who receives visits from me already must refer the couple to me.  It actually gets really complicated because sometimes we get referrals of couples we have not tracked so then we have to do additional research.  Sometimes we don’t get enough referrals so we have to start making calls to families we visit asking for referrals!   It’s a very laborious process and we should probably reconsider how we decide on families so our lives are a little easier.

Anyway, about your question…..hmmmmmmmmm…I generally make it a rule to be completely unknown to those I have not visited, but maybe it would help our process if people actually knew who I was.  Perhaps people could even submit applications and then our scouting department would have an easier job….with people coming to us for a change!  O-k, here’s the deal, you can tell people about me, but only if you also mention my contact information for anyone who wants to be considered for a visit.  My email is

anniversaryelf@gmail.com.  I think this could greatly help our elf’s in the scouting department!  They are slightly overworked.Sincerely,

Bob (The anniversary elf)

Soooooo…do you want a visit from Bob (The anniversary elf)? Simply email him and see what he says! I am starting to believe he’s real, since he has an email and all. Thank you, Bob, for visiting us!!

And to end on a cheery note, here are some pictures of Lydia and me on her three month birthday!