Monday, January 31, 2011

Happy 3rd Birthday, Jack!!

I cannot believe I have a 3 year old! This is pure madness!!

Jack, we got off to a bit of a rocky start. Labor and delivery were incredibly difficult. I was barely able to walk after the c-section and you couldn't walk at all (which is to be expected). At home we took it easy, snuggling and sleeping for weeks on end. We enjoyed the luxury of oodles special time for just you and me.Then, suddenly, you turned 1 and I thought. Oh. My. God! I have a 1 year old! It became very clear that you had my personality. Stubborn, oppinionated, sassy as hell and so very much fun to be around! (Not-S0-Secretly, I'm pleased as punch that you have my personality!)By 2 you were starting to impress us, learning to peddel a tricycle (more on that later), starting to pretend, and starting to understand that you were about to be a big brother (as much as a two year old can understand such things). And then there are your curls... ::squee::.At 3 you are our little "used car salesman". You're gregarious and passionate. It's impossible to keep up with your elaborate imagination. Just yesterday, you were an astronaut who took Gigi in your space ship to the moon to see the moon snow, and the moon kitty. You love to flex your muscles in the mirror and build things with your vast array of constructible toys. While sometimes you're not too patient with your little brother (I can relate, my little brother used to drool on my stuff too) you love to include him in your pretend adventures and almost always want to share some of whatever you have with him.

Happy Birthday, Jack! You're becoming such a big boy!

Henry's Eye Appointment

Today I took my littlest guy to get his cavernous hemangioma (stork bite) looked at. Because its on his left eyelid, (you can kinda see it in the picture above) we had to take him to a pediatric opthamologist. P.S. Do not Google 'hemangioma on eyelid'. Oh. My. God!

The pediatrician recommended we see this specialist not because he's actively concerned but because we should have a baseline measurement of the growth. If it does increase in size and thus impair Henry's vision, he might need surgery. The opthamologist thinks his vision is not being affected at this time, which although I knew that, it's fabulous to hear from an expert. The doc is planning to see us regularly for monitoring (as hemangioma's can continue to grow in size till age 3). But for now, things are just peachy!

I'm kinda AWOL right now

My mom is in town so I'm using the time to be highly productive. Also, my evenings are reserved for relaxing and socializing so I might not get around to blogging for another day or two. But when I do there will be much to discuss!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Thiiiiiis Close- updated

Snow is all pretty and stuff and it causes cute snuggly days inside.

But big fat wet snow, makes trees do this.

Our neighbor rang our doorbell at 9pm last night and the Husband and I looked at each other like "Who could that be..." We open the door and our neighbor is like "Hurry, you guys, you have to move your car, like right now!"

Good thing we didn't hesitate. Within 5 minutes we heard this gigantic snap and the sound of creaking splintering wood. This tree in front of our neighbor's house split in half. The heaviest part went into the newly empty parking spaces and a little landed against the house but didn't hurt anyone or damage anything.

I know just a few months ago I was talking about how bad I wanted to move. But especially when this kind of stuff happens and our neighborhood rolls up its collective sleeves it makes me so very happy to be right here.
And this is what it looked like this morning.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


This is my kula.
To hear a word used is one thing, to understand it's true meaning is another.
Photo Credit: Cheryl Catranbone

Well, Consider My Mind Blown

If you've met me or read my blog for a bit you probably know- I'm so type A. I will try to control the weather if left to my own devices. Seriously, and I'm pretty sure I'm going to be the first one to do it. For those of you who are not type A or who don't get it let me give you some insight: my mind is constantly filled with chatter. I'm always making a list, planning a project, reflecting on something I've done or beating myself up for something I should have done better.

It's not good, my friends.

I've dealt with postpartum anxiety this go-round and what may or may not have been postpartum depression on the last go-round. But I digress. Basically, my mind is not quiet and I'm a bit twitchy. M'kay, so where am I going? I have been changed (I am being changed, I will be changed).



I know what you're thinking. I don't have time for that! Seriously, when my yoga instructors were talking about meditation my head was nodding but my brain was thinking "I don't have time for this." They didn't give much instruction before we started. They just said this:
  • if you're uncomfortable at any point make tiny adjustments because you don't want to sit in discomfort,

  • try to be present and quiet the mind- it's going to wander and that's okay but you can just gently bring it back,

  • anyone who manages to sit still on a cushion for 10 minutes experiences a success.

These things seemed easy enough. So with an open (and chattery) mind we begin. Sitting with my legs crossed and my eyes closed. The most beautiful thing happens, in the studio next door there is a yoga class for 2-4 year olds going on. They're singing about liking blueberries and twinkle twinkle and laughing and playing. And I sat. And I listened. Occasionally I'd start to wander through my own thoughts but then I'd come back, reminding myself just to listen to the kids and relax and breathe. I could feel something happening, I don't know how 'transcendent' the something was but then the instructor rang the little gong and 10 minutes was up.

Ten minutes of stillness and silence has never ever ever passed so fast in my whole life! When I slowly opened my eyes I felt really calm and relaxed. We're supposed to find 10 minutes every day, and despite my initial thoughts that this is so not going to work for me I'm really excited to continue!

Did you know meditation reduces cortisol (a stress hormone) levels in the brain.

I'm totally sold!
And here's Henry, saying hello- for those of you who prefer to see pics of the bebes.

Happy Birthday, Mom!

Monday, January 24, 2011


On a lighter note... or a heavier note depending on your point of view. I've been dying to try this recipe. When faced with a lack of dessert in the house I do the only sensible thing: make some. This afternoon opportunity presented itself. I mixed the whole thing in the food processor as suggested by some of the reviews. Using the bag I plan to use for storage when they're done I provided some protection from the flour. (Not my worst idea ever.)

I used white whole wheat flour, turbinado sugar, and chocolate instead of raisins... 'cause... DUH!

I used my pizza cutter to make the triangles.

After putting them in the oven I realized I need a kitchen gnome to clean up after me! I did not find one available on Craig's List.

Can do'sville, baby!

I'm Not THAT Girl

I have always aspired to be someone I'm not. In high school I wanted desperately to be that popular girl, that athletic girl, that mysteriously cool and aloof girl. I would try to change myself by changing my hair or my clothes, as though bangs would somehow transform me into a wicked-cool ultra fantastic person. I wanted so badly to be someone I felt that I was not.

In college I wanted to be someone again. I tried on personas as often as I changed my clothes. I was a nerd, a student government/ Greek/ leader. I was a smoker (gross). I was a poet (complete with emo/hobo chic clothes), and a party girl... oh, was I ever. I was also the depressed girl, the girl who wrote really twisted poetry and short stories about the bad things that happened to her. Instead of just trying to be someone different I actually was someone different. It was inauthentic. It gave me (and probably everyone around me) whiplash.

In graduate school I was lost. I moved home after graduation. At 24 I moved in with my parents and started commuting into the city to my first 'big girl' job. I stopped trying to be THAT girl and started trying to just BE. It wasn't easy but I got lucky. I was happily distracted; I met my husband. We got married and had our first handsome little guy. I was so unsure about parenting, so unsteady that I was nearly paralyzed by the fear of screwing up. I slipped back again. Trying to be a certain type of mother, certain type of wife. I poured over books and articles and blogs and tried to get Jack to sleep the right way, eat right, nurse right, play all the right games, learn all the right things. No matter how difficult (or utterly pointless) trying to be THAT girl in high school or college may have been trying to be THAT mom was worse. It was brutal and exhausting.

Recently, like, in the last few weeks, I suddenly feel no need to be some specific type of person. The rat race to find my identity seemed to have been called off. I'm not this, or that, or that girl, or that hot-mess-of-a-girl, or that mom, or the other mom. I'm just me. I am so much greater than the sum of my parts.

Meredith Brooks may have had it right. I'm a little bit of everything, all rolled into one.
I wouldn't have it any other way.

**I wrote this Saturday night, making it technically a 'late-night confession' but I saved it to post on Monday morning. Then Sunday in yoga we covered some really wild stuff which related beautifully to this post. But I can't do this all at once and do it justice. I'll write about Sunday's revelation very soon.

Sunday, January 23, 2011


This weekend has totally blown. my. mind. I started to write a list of every awesome thing I did this weekend but it became quite lengthy. My Yoga Teacher Training is going beautifully. It's what I was hoping it would be and so so so much more! (I have some great tidbits to share but we'll get to that later.) Jack is about to celebrate his third birthday and I'm getting so excited! This coming weekend my mom is coming back into town (both my mom and dad were here this weekend) and we're going to tea. I'm a sucker for high tea.
Good things are happening and good things are coming!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Cooking Lessons

I think it's time.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

If you're thinking to yourself...

"She's been a little manic about the projects lately" -you're not wrong. I've had quite a bit craftyness build up because the whole time we were trying to sell our house I wasn't working on anything. We didn't do anything around the house and I wasn't doing any of my own lil' projects because I was too worried about having to clean them up if someone came for a showing.

So I'm working it out of my system! (That and in the winter I'm stuck inside alot so I get bored, which is always dangerous.)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Back to School

Friday evening if my first day of school. I haven't been inside a classroom since 2005 when I finished my Masters Degree. I had been in school from when I was 5 till I was 24 non-stop. Now, after an almost 6 year hiatus I'm starting an 11 month Hatha Yoga teacher training program.

I thought I'd be more zen, because it's you know Yoga and it's not like I'm getting grades or working towards a GPA- if I complete the program I get certified. I'll be able to teach Beginner, Level 1 and Level 2 Yoga. But I'm not so zen. I have first-day-of-school butterflies, big time! I always get butterflies before the first day.

I'm anxious about the workload. I'm kinda worried because I don't know what to expect from the curriculum or requirements. I'm anxious about doing my best. I'm excited to learn and grow. I hope that the whole breastfeeding thing won't be a challenge because classes run kinda long: Friday 6-9 Saturday 12-6 and Sunday 12-6. Henry's not feeding very often but we've made it this far, so I'd like to get all the way to a year.

I have all my books.I have my new hand-stitched yoga mat bag. (I'm so pleased with how it turned out and how little it cost me!)
I wonder if I should bring an apple for the teachers?

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Ice Ice Baby

Yesterday someone in my house (not me) insisted that we go for a walk. Cause it was a balmy 30 degrees outside?! Okay, fine. Well we bundled the kids and off we went. Too bad poor Henry missed his naps because of teething pains and then fell asleep in the stroller. If it was a warm day I'd have parked him in the yard and let him sleep. I think he was grateful to get a little nap.Today we woke up to a layer of ice. Unfortunately, we're out of milk.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Don't Tell My Husband

I love my husband. Today he is off work and he took the kids for a play date at a friend's house. (Her husband is home alone with the kiddo while she celebrates her birthday at a spa!) So the boys, and their boys are playing this morning.

I got ready and left the house at the same time as the boys but I got in my husband's manual transmission sedan (no car seats here) and ran a few errands. I went to the fabric store because I needed one final thing to finish my yoga mat bag (I'll show you when it's done).

After that I accidentally ran into a cafe and had a scandalous and passionate affair with a caramel macchiato and a chocolate croissant. I chose to have kids and to stay home with them. I love it, even teaching Jack how to play gently and share with Henry can be sweet... sometimes. But it's grueling too. So this little treat; this kid-free, decadent, warm and toasty breakfast rendez-vous felt so very special.

And it was, my friends, it was.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

The Making of a Table

I really enjoyed this project. If I'm being totally honest, it was something to do and I really like working with my hands because at the end you get to enjoy a finished product and say "I did that."

Also we were looking to put a piece in our kitchen but because it needed to sit in front of the window we didn't want something that was visually substantial. And this piece was one of ours from way back and it was a choice between giving the table new life and reusing it or donating it and getting something new. The reuse option seemed greener and cheaper, so away we went.

Step One: (Not Pictured) We (meaning I told my husband and he did it) cut the legs of the table down to the height we wanted.

Step Two: (Not Pictured) Rough up the wood. The piece is from Ikea where everything is modern and the lines are clean so it required some wearing in using a file, hammer, pliers, and nail setter.Step Three: (Pictured) Prep for paint. Wipe down the wood, tape off the clean edges (I wanted to keep the butcher block top).Step Four: (Pictured) Oil based primer. Only one coat needed!Step Five: (Not Pictured)Paint in color of choice. I liked this slate blue because it goes well in our kitchen. I chose to use polycrylic instead of polyurethane because polycrylic is more colorless and better preserved the blue.

Step Six: (Pictured) Add a layer of furniture glaze.In retrospect I would have only glazed part of the piece before moving on to the wiping it off step because it dried fast and then was really hard to get off.Step Seven: (Pictured) Wipe off glaze. Wipe off as much as you want to leave the piece looking as distressed/aged/dirty as you like. I actually had to wet a wipe down and use both a wet and dry piece of scrap because it was very hard to wipe off the dried glaze without re-wetting.
Step Eight: (Not Pictured) The piece got a final coat of poly before we put it in place. The final coat protects the glaze from accidentally transferring to clothing or curtains and makes it easier to wipe-down in the event of an inevitable spill.

In total it took about a week to do and the basic instructions I used were from Blue Cricket Design.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Dirty Boys

Learning how to take off your bib might be a cool trick, but insisting on taking it off during meals is not cool, Little Man.

Today is another laundry day. Jack is proving that laundry has uses other than creating more work for Mommy. It serves as a stand in pile of snow, leaves or sand. How convenient!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Their own bathroom

In spite of having their own bathroom it seems there has recently been a dinosaur migration.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

A little something

It's no blizzard
but it's enough
to get out
and play in.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Late-Night Confession

Last winter when we were snowed in for what seemed like weeks on end. I kinda loved it. I don't really need to be snowed in all winter long, but a long weekend or a few days here and there is kinda romantic and sweet and also good for the family. So the snow that's falling outside right now? I confess that I'm hoping that it sticks enough that we'll get to use the snow pants.

What do you see when you look at this picture?
Here's Henry. Yesterday he crawled over to me and said "Ah!" I said "Up?" He said "Ah!!" So I picked him up and he giggled at me and gave me a big ol' snuggle. So I believe we may have our first word. I'm not too surprised because my little Henry so loves to be held.
It's kinda the running joke in our family that my husband is the chef and I eat the food. I used to cook in college and graduate school. Honestly, I think I'm a pretty good cook but the Husband LOVES to cook. Who was I to stand in the way? Recently I've been more active in the kitchen.

While part of my husband wants to kick me out of 'his' kitchen or at the very least help me not to use the wrong spices (his fears, not mine) he's been pretty good about just accepting that sometimes I want to cook too. The meal quality isn't actually compromised as a result. I confess, cooking for my husband is intimidating because he acts like a know it all when it comes to food. But he mostly seems to like what I make.