Spring is a time for growing things. Everything (and everyone) in Appaloosa Plains definitely seems to be growing, expanding, and changing at a rapid pace!
After Kanoa left, Jazlyn leaned heavily on her friendship with Emma for awhile as she recovered from having a baby and losing her husband. Emma tries to be the best friend possible, but reveals her pregnancy, which of course sends Jazlyn right off into more tears!
|(I think Jazlyn's mood swings are starting to wear thin on Emma...)|
Jazlyn takes Emma up on the offer of a spa treatment and salon makeover package and gets her hair cut in a much more flattering bob style, though Emma's not sure the stylists in this small town are that talented ...
(And here you all must have all thought Jazlyn meant something very bad when she said "cut it off" ... she just meant her hair!! *snicker*)
|Amazing what a little lipstick and a good eyebrow waxing will do! (and possibly some botox at the corner of the mouth?)|
Emma also convinces Jazlyn to get out of the house a bit more, and what better way than to socialize with the locals? They take a trip down to the river beach for some sun.
However, while there, Jazlyn gets confronted by Cruz Martingale, the son of her ex-husband's lover Sofia. Emma tries to walk by and pretend she's not overhearing anything scandalous.
|Apparently Cruz has the same ideas about what to do to Kanoa as Jazlyn!!|
Simon, working harder than ever now that a baby is on the way, puts in extra off-hours with his veterinary volunteer work for the community. It's a lot of work for no pay, but he hopes it will pay off in the long run.
And it does!
|Simon finds the source of Skedaddle's odd behavior ...|
Honey Darnell, one of the town's celebrities and country music star, has a show horse she absolutely adores, but for a long time Skedaddle has refused to go into the ring and no one can figure out why. Simon, on one of his routine clinics, walks beside Skedaddle and notices she will only remain calm when he's on her left side. Careful investigation reveals that Skedaddle's right eye has gotten a cataract and she cannot see from that side, making her too nervous when approached wrong.
Simon refers Honey to a well known horse surgeon who can come to town (for a pricey fee) and fix Skedaddle's bad eye. In the meantime, a haircut to keep her mane out of her eyes will help ease a little of her skittishness.
Honey is so grateful to find out why her best friend has been so upset, she immediately goes to the science lab and meets with Simon's boss Kenji Midden (who I think she may be romantically involved with) and recommends Simon for an immediate promotion at work.
And so Simon becomes a full time Lab Tech, with benefits. This could not have come at a better time!
|Simon arrives home in his new lab coat, complete with pocket protector!|
When Simon breaks the good news to Emma, she's appropriately thrilled for his success (and a big raise)!
|"YESS! *Fist Pumping*|
But first and foremost on Emma's mind is decorating the baby's room!
|"Can I get some custom wallpaper? I don't need a sofa yet ..."|
And immediately has a small shopping spree to get the crib, colorful wallpaper, with matching bedding, curtains and a highchair.
Now Simon is just going to have to work twice as hard!
|The house is so tiny, the downstairs 'office' becomes the baby's room, with only room for a crib in a little nook!|
Simon is warming up to the idea of Fatherhood and preparing his future son or daughter with a lot of careful (lovingly teasing) instructions.
|"Your Daddy will teach you to fish, and Mama will spend all his money on expensive shoes for you!"|
Emma starts to get cravings in the middle of the night, for strange things like mac and cheese mixed with curry sauce ...
|"Ok, maybe this wasn't such a great idea ..."|
But she remains determined to become a gardener too!
Until she discovers the local deer are eating her crops ...
|"They leave a calling card ?! You have got to be kidding me."|
So Simon builds her a small fenced enclosure, made appropriately from eco friendly up-cycled logs he salvaged from an old farm being torn down. Now the deer couldn't get in anymore.
|No trees, vegetables or starving deer were harmed in making this picture.|
Cupid is growing too!
He shows a distinct protective personality, and keeps the 'evil Raccoon' out of the trash can and Emma's garden too.
|"GRRR!! (brave lil' guy!)|
Emma rewards his bravery appropriately with tons of huggies and smoochies.
|"You saved me! ...You are my hero, my little knight in fluffy armor and fangs!"|
And Cupid grows up into a handsome smokey colored mix of both his Mom and his Dad.
|"Hey! Somebody replaced my little fur-ball with a gorgeous wolf!"|
Cupid is very close to both Emma and Simon, and very protective, never leaving Emma's side when she gardens. And, he loves to give doggie-hugs!
|"I will keep you safe from ghosts!"|
And forms an especially tight bond with Simon, who spends long hours every evening training Cupid to hunt and do tricks.
|"I LOVE MY SIM!"|
Simon tries to get Emma to go fishing with him after work, so they can catch specimens for his lab work and fertilizer for the garden.
|But Emma thinks fishing is so boring, and way too quiet! (Nice high-waters there Simon!)|
Ever the social butterfly, Emma prefers to spend most of her days out meeting other Mom-sims at neighborhood playgroups and meets the town's socialite upper class Mothers, who embrace her more sophisticated tastes.
|"Hello, I'm Susannah Steele, we own 'Steele Stallions' a horse breeding ranch in the Valley"|
Susannah is gorgeous, well dressed, and in her middle years. She has three young sons and is a successful businesswoman with the best horse breeding program in the entire region. She encourages Emma to follow her dreams and be a successful woman and Mother at the same time.
|"You can do it Emma, things will get better, you'll see."|
Simon shows up at the park where the playgroup is being held and joins Emma on a bench.
He then proceeds to give an impromptu lecture about the breeding habits of wild squirrels, much to Emma's embarrassment.
|Emma is suddenly exceptionally engrossed in her book.|
But in the end, Simon is just ... well, Simon. He's a science geek, he loves animals and is neurotically odd; but Emma loves him anyways!
|Simon: "Watcher help us, her baby smells like something died!!"|
Dog: "Dude, its a dirty diaper ... you better get used to it."
Read onward to Chapter 1.9 "Something in the water" HERE!
**Notes: I really DID have good intentions of putting Emma's birth in this chapter, but it sortof took off on a mind of its own and I had so many fun screenshots I wanted to use during her pregnancy too! So, to be gentle on the chapter size, I decided to break it into two chapters, with this one for Simon, and the next one, obviously Emma's spotlight with having the baby!
** Chapter 9 went up really fast, so the link is right above the notes ... Baby time!