7 Quick Takes Friday:

Hey, I had a baby!  Which means I’m no longer pregnant, which means you guys no longer have to endure me whining my way through the Trimester That Lasted 60 Years.  You’re welcome.

Ken and I, always reliably ahead of the newest trends, are reading Hunger Games.  You may have heard of it.  And yes  even Ken, who would prefer to do many many things ahead of reading, is reading it.

Last night, all the kids were asleep, Veronica was laying in the bed between us as we read the books on matching Kindles.  I surveyed the scene for a moment, then said, “Hey honey, check us out, with our one child and our spending a quiet evening reading in bed.  We’re so intellectual.”

To which Ken, ever the pie-eyed dreamer, responded, “Yes, reading our young adult novels about teenage murder.”

By the time I realized that an heirloom-quality baptismal gown would be something we’d be getting a lot of use out of, and should probably have in our possession, we were three or four kids into the whole thing.  So instead of shelling out hundreds of dollars for a new one, or paying someone to convert my wedding dress into one, or marrying into a family that already has a 200 year old one, we just borrowed my best friend’s.  We baptized three babies in Kim’s gown, and then we got transferred, far, far away from our borrowed gown source.

In a panic in the days before departure, I scoured the antiques mall in Memphis for a suitable replacement.  Something simple, something classic, something that could be passed down to our children, and already looked like it had some miles put on it.

And it couldn’t be too girly, since we only had boys, which meant that the dress I was baptized in, and still had, couldn’t be used, since it was clearly girly.

But now, we’ve got a girl, and I’ve got a choice.  But I can’t decide.  So I present to you the two options:

The one on the left is my baptismal gown, circa mid-70s.  I used it, and Lotus wore it when we did our “not a baptism” thing when she was an infant.  Then it was deemed “too girly” for any boy baptism, and stored in the attic.

The one on the right is the Memphis antiques mall gown, circa “over 100 yrs old” according to the tag attached when I bought it.  It was plain enough to get Ken’s heavy sigh-and-eye roll approval for boy use, and John-Luke wore it at his baptism.

So there you go- the tale of two gowns.  Based on history and aesthetics, which do you think I should use for Veronica’s baptism?

The previous quick take was so long and involved, I think it should count as two.

Ken goes back to work on Monday, and I’m kind of panicing.  I don’t care how many children you have- that first week (or month or fiscal quarter) of being solo parent is horrifying.  And I hate hate hate the postpartuum survival season.  Instead of being grateful for it, and viewing it as a chance to grow closer to God through radical dependence on His grace, I resent it and just want to be over so I can get back to pre-pregnancy clothes and workout.  I find myself recoiling at the chaos.

In fact, in the middle of writing this, the middle boys ran in the house, waking up the baby, who had slipped out of her diaper and managed to soak 30 layers of clothes and blankets with pee.  While I tried changing her, the 2 year old started screaming hysterically that he didn’t want to go watch Yo Gabba Gabba, and wanted to hold the baby, who was still screaming, while the six year old stood there motionless and wide-eyed as the phone started ringing with no one thinking to answer it.  Just to top it off, the baby then peed all over the couch as a little exclamation mark to the whole moment of crazy.

So this quick take took 30 minutes to write, even at a time that I thought all kids happily involved in other activities so I could sit down to write it.

I hate Survival Season.

My friend Amy, whose due date was the day before mine, but went five days past me, just had her baby girl, Clara Lily Grace, this morning.  Since Amy lives in Canada, she has access to the Internet only when the beavers on treadmills are able to generate enough electricity to operate it, and so we’re relying on communication via moose-currier, which makes pictures slow going (they have to wait for a Mountie composite sketch artist to dog sled out to the hospital to make a drawing of the baby).  Mooseagram assures me that mother and baby are doing fine, though.

Go visit Hallie this week for more quick takes.


  1. says

    Why can’t V wear both gowns? The long sleeved one can be an “under-dress” and your old gown can go over it? Now, THAT’S tradition! (Cue Fiddler on the Roof music)

  2. says

    She needs to wear yours! it’s a girly tradition. I posted a Quick Takes today, but there’s nothing there that you need to see in your non-existant free time.

    PS. Updated count: 44.

  3. says

    I strongly vote for the “girly” gown that both you and Lotus have worn. Not only is it a beautiful dress but it can be a unifying symbol of the 3 Donaldson girls. So, I vote all girls wear the white “girly” one and all boys wear the antique one.

  4. says

    Well, you’ve proven that one can be postpartum and HILARIOUS at the same time. Re: the baptismal gown, I would use the old one at the actual baptism and have Veronica wear the one you wore at the after party! There is going to be an after party, right?

    If I were there, I would come and help you – I would cook and clean and entertain your kids so you could nurse and read Hunger Games. But I’m not there…

  5. says

    I like Paula’s idea- antique gown for church, family gown for the par-TAY.

    p.s. any celebration linked to an intrinsically Catholic event is going to be a par-TAY. That’s how God intended it to be.

  6. says

    Yup, my vote is all the girls wear the same one.

    I have just started the last Hunger Games book…but you’ll probably be done before me with all your free time and all.

    Happy mother’s Day to one of the greatest I know!

  7. says

    I love this bloggy. You are so beyond funny. Wish I could find you and move you by my house. I like the dress on the right the best.
    Totally crazy with newborn and kids. Hang in there and laugh a lot. laugh laugh laugh. You seem like someone who does anyway.

  8. says

    You may feel like your life in is total chaos right now- but you’ve still got the funny. That counts sister, that counts.

    I always think I fail at the whole ‘babymoon’ thing when I’m in it, but looking back now it does seem dreamy…hmm maybe its the whole lack of sleep thing. Anyway, I get over the guilt and enjoy the chaos (eventually) cause it is what it is-pretty crazy awesome. Congratulations!

  9. says

    Congrats on Veronica. Love the name. We kept having boys by the time I decided I liked it. I guess now that you’re done whining about pregnancy, you’ll whine about survival season? 😉 That’s okay; funny stuff all around.

  10. says

    How is it that you are just several days postpartum and are still hilarious?! You rock! I’m several months postpartum and still don’t have my funny on. Go girl!

    Totally with you on #5. Freaks.me.out. And that’s just with four kiddos. Again, that’s three months postpartum and after a week like the one I’ve had…blah. But then, you are Cari and you’ll keep on chuckling and make it through. Even if it does involve a lot of pee over oodles of clothing.

    I’m with all the others and say the girls all have the same gown.

    Give sweet Veronica a kiss from MN!

  11. says

    How did I miss this post!? I like both wearing your dress and the idea of wearing both at separate times. So I guess I am no help at all.

    As to survival season… Oh, heavens, girl. I feel you on that 1,000%.

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