Wednesday, December 31, 2008

last post of 2008

it's 11:23pm presently. i'm having the most UNremarkable new year's eve of all time. which makes me feel altogether pathetic. i'm having flashbacks to past new year's eves...there hasn't been a great one in several years, but there HAVE been great ones. and the girl who has great new year's eves is still inside me. she's just sleep deprived with dish pan hands at the moment.


anyway.


i'm almost completely opposed to new year's resolutions. i think i've made that clear in the past. but for fun, i thought i'd create some for myself this year, just with my own twist that won't make me a hypocrite.


1. i resolve to create a design that goes to print on http://www.threadless.com/ (have you been to this site? for some reason i'm entirely obsessed with it lately)


2. i resolve to wear earrings at least once per week


3. i resolve to find a politcal podcast to subscribe AND listen to


4. i resolve to get more use out of all my beautiful high heels


5. i resolve to continue my love and pursuit of travel mugs


6. i resolve to stop having feelings over who reads my blog, or how often i blog. as if anyone's thinking to themselves "man, it's been like, FOUR DAYS since breanna posted. i'm really upset about that. why isn't she considering my feelings?"


7. because my husband just suggested that you would laugh at this one, i resolve to do one push up every day for the next year. (i don't personally find that funny, but who knows, you just might)


8. i resolve to refuse to buy any lotion or bodywash until i've exhausted my extensive pre-baby collection beneath my sink.


9. i resolve to not care even a little if i never do a single one of these. because, as you'll recall, i despise new year's resolutions.


10. although, i'm actually quite pleased with this list.



stay tuned. at some point, i'll be sharing some ridiculous stories from the last few weeks with you.


and i'll FINALLY respond to Corine's tagging!


cheers to your years friends. hope you had a great midnight kiss. it's 11:35 now, and i'm going to bed. (told you so. pathetic)

Monday, December 22, 2008

Friday, December 19, 2008

(one of those posts where something was profound to me that sounds cliche to everyone else)

i connected with mary tonight. THE mary. like, mother of jesus mary. no kidding.

i'll set the scene for you: portland is having crazy snow days (see last post), so it's super white and glowy outside. my fella's out playing poker with the dudes tonight (shocking, i know) so i'm here with the little one. i was rocking her to sleep tonight (yes, i still do that. so what. i love it.) the curtains were drawn and i could see snow falling. i always sing to her while we rock, and tonight i decided it made perfect sense to sing a christmas song. the only lullaby-ish one i could think of was silent night.

so i'm singing it, you know the words. "silent night" check. "holy night" sure. "all is calm, all is bright" indeed it is. "round yon virgin." tricky. round, yes. yon....maybe? virgin? hahaha. "mother and child" go on... "holy infant" okay, she may not be HOLY, but she is my miracle. have you heard that story? i'll tell you sometime. so, holy will work. "tender and mild" 3am this morning NOTHING felt tender or mild. but generally speaking, yes. "sleep in heavenly peeeeeeeeeeeeace. sleep in heavenly peace." well, that's what we beg for each and every night.

anyway, at that point, my brain started swirling with thoughts of (the) mary, and how i'd never really considered any of the days between the manger and just before the cross. i imagined mary holding jesus at 2am. i imagined jesus hooked up to a breathing machine (okay, not realistic, but i was making connections) and mary feeling entirely helpless. i imagined all of jesus' diaper blowouts, the times he bit her so hard she bled. the days she felt like hopping on a donkey and getting the heck out of town. jesus was perfect, but mary was A MOTHER.

then i started thinking about the pressure. OH THE PRESSURE of being mom to the SAVIOR of the world. this is bigger than deciding to vaccinate or not, when to start solid foods or what type of diapers to use. this is a tremendous responsibility. imagine how scary it was every time little j got a cold. just imagine. what about the discipline? are you allowed to spank jesus?! at what point do you wonder if he'll say "don't you know who i am?!?!"

wow, mary. tough gig.

but also? AWESOME GIG MARY. i mean, you're the woman behind the man! what if jesus had been married and (the) mary was your mother-in-law!! it's hard living up to my MIL's cooking and supreme kindness...but (the) mary??? yikes. you'd really have to be on your game at christmas! being jesus' mom is big time bragging rights! "oh, little johnny just graduated from bethleham university with honors!" "how lovely. JESUS SAVED ALL OF MANKIND." mary would have crazy book deals these days. she'd be bigger than oprah. way-to-go mary!

and i said to myself, kaia is not jesus. she is no one's savior. but, who knows what God will do with her? who knows what tremendous things she may do. considering the phenomenal role models she has in our friends, i wouldn't be shocked by any amount of greatness from her. i'm not sure of the conclusion i came to...maybe that, if (the) mary could do it, so could i? maybe that this particular phase of parenting is really quite small and quick? maybe....maybe that there is a bit, or a lot, of (the) mary in every mother? our job is no less important than hers was...is it?
maybe i was just enjoying seeing jesus in a new way? as a child who pulled mommy's hair, chewed on the cabinets and refused to sleep. something about that makes me feel better about...everything.

maybe there is no conclusion.


Thursday, December 18, 2008

snow days abound

say what you will about miserable driving conditions and unprepared towns shutting down. i for one am LOVING these portland snow days. my fella is home, which means (in addition to great quality family time, of course) i get to take some naps and share some house duties. i wish he could be home EVERYDAY!!

he, however, does not feel quite so stoked about the situation. as it turns out, he's going stir crazy...cabin fever they say? he's on the fence between nuts and cuckoo, and cuckoo is winning. it seems that, despite his self proclaimed "homebody-idness" (my word, not his.) he desperately needs to leave the house on a very regular basis. like, at least once per day.


and, if you ask me, he's also realizing with a little more clarity that being a stay at home parent is not quite the luxury it seems to be to some office-going folk. hmph. that's all i have to say about that.

the only downside to the "arctic blast," as they're calling it, is that i'm way behind on getting my christmas cards out and my humble gifts made and delivered. this=frustrating, but oh well.
best part? fun snow pictures!! enjoy!













































































Monday, December 01, 2008

how do you ask a one year old for forgiveness?

it was bound to happen, you'll likely say. even still.

it's been a long day for both of us. needles and exams for the sweet one, and the accompanying agony for mommy. i was low on patience. i tried to right myself with prayer while she napped. then, this afternoon, i was trying to get things done around the house and she got into some glue. gorrilla glue, to be exact. i grabbed her immediately, but she already had it on her hands and had shmeared some on her face. i sped to the bathroom to wash it off with warm soap and water. gorrilla glue, as you can imagine, is really rather....gluey. so it was taking some serious scrub power. this did not make the girl very happy with her mommy.

when kaia gets angry she goes for the glasses first. not that they're any kind of fancy or expensive. but they're the only ones i've got. she also grabs them about a hundred times a day just because she can. this drives me batty because i'm constantly having to clean the smudgy fingerprints off the lenses.

so, there we are, sticky girl and smudgy glasses mommy. as she grabbed my glasses i belted out "NOOOO." this resulted in the most tragic looking face i've ever seen in my life, followed by an awful "i thought you loved meeeee!" cry. i felt awful. and by awful, i mean absolutely evil.

i grew up with intense yelling (among other transgressions) each and every day. one of the things that drew me to my husband was how very peaceful and mellow he is. i have an iron clad commitment to having a peaceful home, and a parenting style that excludes yelling. i know, it's an ideal goal in an un-ideal world. but still.

so, once the glue was dissolved from her skin, and my glasses were relatively clean again, the reality of my response hit me. by this time, she had long moved on from the momentary lapse in my character. I sat down with her and said "kaia, mommy should NOT have yelled at you. that was not a loving or kind thing to do. i'm very sorry." it was heartfelt and sincere as i'll get out. she had absolutely no response. then i said "do you want to watch blue's clues?" at which point she gleefully clapped and smiled. i thought "great job mom. you promised no t.v until she's three, and no yelling, now look at you!"

so, when a one year old can't offer forgiveness except by forgetting the incident altogether, how do you reconcile your wrongdoings?

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

wordless wednesday- happy thanksgiving!

image credit: norman rockwell

Monday, November 17, 2008

to my "distant friend"

something funny happened today. after a long and lonely day of cleaning and re-cleaning, failing miserably to soothe my teething daughter (4 molars at once? seriously?) and trying to process the test results that have come back (more on that another day) and what my life will look like for the next several years, i was stopped in my tracks by a mysterious purple envelope.

you know the one.

what followed was about thirty minutes of re-reading your words, and that kind of cry where it sounds like you're hyperventilating. i am completely astounded, and without words really. can 'thank you' REALLY be enough?

the world feels so small tonight. and God feels so big. and you have caused me to feel heard, and cared for, and not so alone. there is a very firm hug swelling in my arms that belongs to you. those sentances, the sentiments, the selfless-ness of it all...i am...? blessed? honored? HUMBLED.

i will do exactly as you said, and since i think i can guess the "friend" you mentioned, i'll be sure to send one just for you. but also? i'm promising you that i'm going to pay this forward, in whatever way i can figure out.

so, distant friend, thank you. my hope is that you are ready for the level of blessing God is about to pour over you (at least, in part, a result of my fervent pleading) for the kindness you've shown.

and now, a message from kaia:
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in case it's a little unclear, she blows a kiss, then signs thank you. it may look the same to you, but i can totally tell the difference!

xoxo
breanna

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

not so wordless wednesday

a friend of mine took me on a mystery girl date last night to see ingrid michaelson, who i LOVE. this guy named david ford opened for her. i'd never heard of him, but was blown away.

i desperately want you to go watch this video. he did this song last night, live, flawless. it's the same as the video, except each instrument was spread around the stage, and he was literally running to each one. i was breathless.

this is the best sound quality of all the videos of the song and, as luck would have it, the only one i can't embed on the blog, so you'll have to clicky.

WARNING: it does definitely contain STRONG language. so if that's an issue for you, don't clicky after all.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qv4QBRS-U50
(BSC, i'm thinking you're the most likely to appreciate this)

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Saturday, November 01, 2008

gratitude in tough times

it's been a very difficult 13 months for us since kaia was born. i've told you bits and pieces along the way about kaia's health problems, but there's been a lot more that's gone unreported. the longest kaia has been healthy throughout her entire life is six weeks. JUST SIX WEEKS. and it's not any one thing, it's LOADS of things. pneumonia, roseola, ear infection, bronchiolitis, thrush, about eight zillion colds and so on. last week we found ourselves in the ER because kaia wasn't breathing well. they gave her steroids, put her on a breathing machine and shoved tubes in her nose. in and out of the hospital since then, with a breathing machine delivered to our home. thursday they drew oodles of her blood (a horrifyig experience) to begin testing for immune disorders and a slew of other scary things.

i'll be honest. i'm not doing super awesome with all this. i'm tired, i'm drained and i'm terrified. it's difficult to keep my imagination in check. what if all of this is coming from some awful underlying problem? what if we're one of "those families" with a terminally ill child who practically live in hospitals? WHAT IF WE LOSE HER??? not having answers is just about the worst part. not knowing how to help her, not knowing where it's all coming from, not knowing when/if it will stop. because we don't know a lot about her current illness, her doctor has advised that we not be around other people, especially children. this, combined with the fact that we have no family nearby, has led me to feel intensly lonely and isolated. not going to our weekly playdates and various playgroups means that i'm not getting time to talk with other moms, processing all of this with women who can be sympathetic and compassionate. it means that EVERY SINGLE DAY is comprised of being with a precious child who has been fully entrusted into my care...who i can't heal. i am face-to-face with all my weaknesses, failures and shortcomings at a time when those things impact the life and well being of my sweet baby girl. the days are long and intense. i'm just not sure i'm cut out for it.

throughout my life i've looked to my friends to serve as the family i lacked. this last year i have been even more grateful for those people in my life who have become my chosen family. the people that will pray for kaia and for our little family. the people who call or text to see how the day is going, if her breathing has improved since yesterday. the people who make a point of remembering the exact time of her next medical appointment or procedure. there aren't a lot of these people in our lives, but i know that i can call them any time of day. i know that when they say they're going to pray, THEY'LL PRAY without ceasing. they'll come and just sit with me, watching television and drinking wine and talking or not talking, when there are plenty of other places they could be having fun.

i am thoroughly grateful for these friends of mine. as hard as these 13 months have been, i'm convinced they would've been infinitely more difficult without the support and love of our close friends. so, thanks friends...for bringing ice cream or coffee or dvd's or lunch to the ER. thanks for the text messages and words of hope. thanks for loving us through these times.

last thing (i promise)- since kaia can't be around people right now, we couldn't do anything with her for halloween. this was particularly sad because she had picked out (ie started chewing on in the store) a super cute halloween outfit. so, we used a coupon for a free professional portrait to have a record of this holiday, and i'm sharing it with you so that SOMEONE will have seen them and uttered "how cute" or "awww." we couldn't afford to buy any, so the pictures have that watermark thing because i just lifted them from the website.


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Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Monday, October 20, 2008

Fall Drive By- Front Porches

i've found a lot of fun new blogs to follow lately. melissa over at http://www.theinspiredroom.net/ has great decorating tips and inspiration.

she asked readers to join her in a fall "drive by" and capture festive porches around town. i took the wee one and headed out this morning to see what i could find. she didn't last long strapped into the car seat, but here's what i captured: (i rotated the pics in photobucket, so if they're still on their sides...well i don't know how to fix it!)

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grab a camera and head out into your neighborhood! when you post your fall drive by pics, you can put a link to your blog at melissa's site. leave me a comment if you participate!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Are you a Resourceful Mommy?

i'm working on it...there are a lot of things i'm doing to move closer towards the title, the most fun of which is following http://www.resourcefulmommy.blogspot.com/. It's a super cool blog with all kinds of goodies each day. i also follow her on twitter (do you twitter? you should!) and she certainly keeps me entertained throughou the day!

best thing is, she's having a radical "site warming' party RIGHT NOW (ends soon) with all kinds of giveaways and such. SO GO OVER THERE, get yourself signed up and cross your fingers! you can thank me later!


Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Blog Action Day 2008: Poverty

I'm joining nearly 10,000 other bloggers, video and podcasters to spark conversation and awareness of poverty today. there are no rules or guidelines.

my brain is going a lot of directions. the poverty i saw in africa...the poverty i saw in russia...the poverty i've seen in america through my work with foster kids...

i don't know about anyone else, but i'm feeling overwhelmed lately. overwhelmed with information, overwhelmed with "facts" and opinions, overwhelmed with the images and stories of children and families who live a world away from me. i tend to shut down when i get this overwhelmed. i tend to ignore everything coming at me. i feel like, if i can't fix everything, i don't want to think about it. i just don't know where to start, where to invest my time and resources.

but we can't shut down. we can't ignore. those of you who have read my blog for very long know that i'm pretty straightforward about my limited knowledge/understanding about political things, and i don't know how to separate poverty from politics. i don't have solutions, i don't have brilliant insights into the current state of things. but i know that, at the very least, we have to start SEEING what's going on, and taking some responsibility for the small things we CAN do in our communities, our social circles. there are needs very close to home, and i think each of us can commit to being more aware of where we can bless others. (i know, it sounds so cliche.)
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there's a resource i use when i train parents called "the state of the village." it's a very effective tool to give people perspective on what's going on in the world around us. it's a little longer than what i would normally post, but i'm sharing it here because it's a very humbling look at how RICH we really are.


State of the Village Report
If the world were a village of 1000 people:
584 would be Asians
123 would be Africans
95 would be East and West Europeans
84 Latin Americans
55 Soviets (still including for the moment Lithuanians, Latvians, Estonians, etc.)
52 North Americans
6 Australians and New Zealanders

The people of the village would have considerable difficulty communicating:
165 people would speak Mandarin
86 would speak English
83 Hindi/Urdu
64 Spanish
58 Russian
37 Arabic
That list accounts for the mother-tongues of only half the villagers. The other half speak (in descending order of frequency) Bengali, Portuguese, Indonesian, Japanese, German, French, and 200 other languages.

In the village there would be:
300 Christians (183 Catholics, 84 Protestants, 33 Orthodox)
175 Moslems
128 Hindus
55 Buddhists
47 Animists
210 all other religons (including atheists)

One-third (330) of the people in the village would be children. Half the children would be immunized against the preventable infectious diseases such as measles and polio.
Sixty of the thousand villagers would be over the age of 65.
Just under half of the married women would have access to and be using modern contraceptives.
Each year 28 babies would be born.
Each year 10 people would die, three of them for lack of food, one from cancer. Two of the deaths would be to babies born within the year.
One person in the village would be infected with the HIV virus; that person would most likely not yet have developed a full-blown case of AIDS.

In this thousand-person community, 200 people would receive three-fourths of the income; another 200 would receive only 2% of the income.

Only 70 people would own an automobile (some of them more than one automobile).
About one-third would not have access to clean, safe drinking water.
Of the 670 adults in the village half would be illiterate.

If the world were a village of 1000 persons, there would be five soldiers, seven teachers, one doctor. Of the village's total annual expenditures of just over $3 million per year, $181,000 would go for weapons and warfare, $159,000 for education, $132,000 for health care.

The village would have buried beneath it enough explosive power in nuclear weapons to blow itself to smithereens many times over. These weapons would be under the control of just 100 of the people. The other 900 people would be watching them with deep anxiety, wondering whether the 100 can learn to get along together, and if they do, whether they might set off the weapons anyway through inattention or technical bungling, and if they ever decide to dismantle the weapons, where in the village they will dispose of the dangerous radioactive materials of which the weapons are made.
Copyright Sustainability InstituteThis article from The Donella Meadows Archive is available for use in research, teaching, and private study. For other uses, please contact Diana Wright, Sustainability Institute, 3 Linden Road, Hartland, VT 05048, (802) 436-1277.


Thursday, October 09, 2008

Thursday, October 02, 2008

fun announcement

i told you last week that i want to work more on writing, and i quickly found an opportunity! today i am the guest poster at a super fun and informative website called "from dates to diapers." the article is called "identity theft." please do me a solid and head over to read it! i'm most excited to read the comments her visitors leave...

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Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

i'm registered...how about you?

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also, stayed tune for an exciting (for me) announcement thursday!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

a new season

as i write this there is stuffed acorn squash baking in my oven, the dishwasher is running, every article of clothing not currently being worn by someone in my house is clean and i'm using a cozy snuggling blanket. i am SO ready for fall.

i, like many others, find myself making resolutions and new goals when the seasons change. i feel the most motivated and resourceful at the start of fall. i love transitioning into warm sweaters and coats, putting boots with my skirts instead of peep toe wedges. i love using the fire place and offering guests hot cocoa with marshmallows. i LOVE fall.

i'm also feeling better in general. presently, kaia's on a pretty regular sleep/nap schedule, which is the greatest thing ever. i'm doing a better job of keeping the house clean and tidy, and cooking meals for our family which we enjoy. i'm feeling more plugged in at church (although nowhere near where i'd like to be) and have some potentially awesome opportunities just ahead. (and, let's be honest here, i finally spoke to my dr about anti depressants again, which are starting to make a difference in my mood and thinking.)

i sure don't have it all figured out. i still don't know when i want to go back to school, or even what i want to go back for. i used to have such a clear cut plan for everything. now i'm almost completely unsure of what my life will look like 5 years from now. i just don't know that i want to do what i've always planned on doing. i'm not going to be shocked if i go an entirely different direction. the hardest part is that i can't figure out how to figure it out.

here's what i've resolved/decided for the short term:
1. i'm going to get out and run again. it's been 2 months since i did the Run Like a Girl 10k, and i haven't run once since that day. so i'm working towards a much more reasonable 5k mid october
2. i'm going to blog more. and i say that realizing that almost no one reads my blog. i'm okay with that (i think). but i really enjoy writing and i'd like to work on my writing skills. i'd like to eventually write articles for websites and blogs relevent to me. my husband thinks i'll write books someday. that's harder to picture.
3. i finally took a step toward my ultimate dream. i auditioned for the worship team at church. i have no idea what will come of it or when, but i'm excited. our church is certainly anointed with a strong worship ministry, and i'd love to be a part of it in any way i can. i should find out the results within a few weeks.
4. this is a small one: there's a group of bloggers who do "wordless wednesday" posts that only have a title and a photo or two. i've really enjoyed seeing other people's wordless posts. so i'm going to join in and start wordless wednesdays.

are you feeling it too? have you been cooking up goals and renewed energy? what are you working on lately?

Monday, September 15, 2008

365 days of change

my little sweet turned one yesterday! all of last week was an emotional rollercoaster and i was a bit worried i'd be a heap of tears yesterday. thankfully, and possibly because i was so busy with party details, the day went superbly with almost no tears or sadness whatsoever on my part. we had so much fun, and kaia was a lovely party girl, showing off her tricks to all the guests.

here's what i get to see every morning, afternoon and night:
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not too terrible huh?

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

in no way posed

in many ways applicable

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Thursday, August 28, 2008

a little hope

first, let's remind ourselves about how breanna is NOT deep into politics, not politically saavy, not highly educated in politics. i'm still a young'un about all this. and this is my blog, where i say what i'm thinking presently. and i may change my mind. and i may be wrong. and all of that is fine. and i'm perfectly comfortable for you to disagree with me, and to do so in a comment even. but please, be kind about it. people sure are getting heated lately, and i can see why. but not here, okay?

i'm watching parts of the democratic convention. i've never seen a convention before, and you can be sure i'll watch parts of the republican convention next week too. i've also been listening to radio shows discussing all this, and more from a republican point of view. so i've heard a lot of the concerns about obama. i don't understand what they all mean. the one i'm hearing the most is "lack of experience."

as i'm watching this convention, i'm just thinking through that. here's what i know: for the last eight years, something hasn't been working right. things are never perfect, of course, but this? yikes. i think change is a great idea. and this big concern about experience...it's just that, experience has been in the white house for a long time...but for the first time in what seems (to me) like a long time, HOPE has a chance of moving in.

and maybe, maybe it's okay for experience to not be at the forefront for a little bit...maybe our country DESPERATELY NEEDS HOPE at this point. maybe we do need to just FEEL like things are getting better, like it's going to be okay. maybe a sense of hope in each of us would make a much bigger difference in our country than many would admit. we've got loads of experience in the system of check and balances...experience in the vp candidate....but when have we had a candidate who can speak hope and optimism into our lives, into the heartbeat of the country itself?

i know, feelings and sentiments do not run a country....we can't make such big decisions based on emotions. but i think it counts for a whole lot of something. i'm still learning, practically ignorant i'm sure. but when i think about someone leading any group of people, when i think about my teachers and coaches and bosses, one of the most profound and effective traits of the successful ones was their ability to empower me, to believe in myself, to communicate their vision for me and their confidence in my ability to do it. sure, they also had to resolve conflicts, manage budgets, attend meetings. but those who were most effective were the ones who could get me on board through inspiration.

i guess i'm just a bit bored with those who oppose obama acting as if his oustanding oratory (oration? orating?) skills are unimportant, or should count against him. i sincerely don't think it's smoke and mirrors. i think there's more than hype when a crowd of gazillions...from all backgrounds, shouts in unison "YES WE CAN!" there's something deep and powerful there.

again, please feel free to share your thoughts, and even to say i don't have a clue what i'm talking about...just do it respectfully, and preferably with wit.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

let's be clear

i did not find this on my own accord. i found it whilst blurking www.ashleyquitefrankly.com (which is lot of fun, if you don't mind a potty mouth).

today she gave us lots of links, and i'm bored, so i was parusing. i was definitely captivated by this: http://www.flickr.com/photos/michael_hughes/sets/346406/show/ and so, because you're all so lovely and grande, i just knew i should share it.

whaddya think? is it as awesome to you as it is to me? i'm seriously impressed.

Monday, July 28, 2008

hey there, general public...

i had this super awesome idea about how you should take your two small children and cross in the middle of a busy street. cause that's a smart thing to do.

and, while you're at it, how about if you smoke while you're driving with your sweet, innocent children in the car with the windows mostly up.

then, what the heck, go ahead and fill your baby's bottle with orange cola.

have i mentioned the part where i just loooove people?

one the plus side, here's a photo i took of my sweet girl today (who, by the way, has never been yanked across the freeway or smoked out in my car or suckled on fanta)

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Monday, July 07, 2008

it's been awhile

since i've shared any new obsessions with you, or attempted to expose you to new and fantastic music. today's the day my friends. i can't get enough of this guy. so much so that i sent him a ridiculously detailed email about my appreciation of his music (and his beard, let's be honest). he wrote back though, so i feel less embarassed about it now.

anyhow, here he is. perfectly wonderful. most raw talent i've seen in a really long time. (this video had the best sound quality, so you'll have to excuse the random intro.)

Friday, June 13, 2008

ch ch ch changes

someone, tell me when i'll find my new normal. someone tell me there IS a normal to be found? why is this identity crisis lingering for so long? why does having a baby and (mostly) leaving the workforce completely change my understanding of myself? why do i perceive that other people feel sorry for me, like they think my life has come to a sudden halt from awesomeness and into a slurry of poo and onesies? because, i mean, the poo and onesies part is true...but is the "old" me gone for good? and why do i feel like i need to apologize for "new" me...for needing to plan around bedtimes and be overly aware of sickness sneaking its way into my house?

i'm acutely terrified of being that new mom who only ever talks about the baby...who seems to exist solely for the baby. except that i think i'm nearly HER. but i've realized, at least in my case...it's not because i'm super obsessed with her (don't get me wrong, i am, just not like THAT...you know, the obsessed that takes great joy in diaper counts and teething symptoms), it's because that's just all there is to my life lately.

let me clarify. it's because, my entire day, and night, and thinking, and all our money is about HER. and it should be. we're intentional about that...i'm choosing to stay home with her. but that's where my time goes. so when people are talking about bosses and coworkers and the new place they tried for lunch, or where they're going for the long weekend...all i HAVE is "she's standing up now!" because it's all i do.

i try REALLY hard to have other things to say. i try to read websites that will give me things to say, important and interesting things. but it's HARD and i find myself horrified that i'm completely boring now. this is not something i'm used to.

so, parents, when does the new normal find its way into my life? when do i get a new sense of self that i feel okay about? and what do i do to speed things up? how do i get acquainted with me?
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Friday, June 06, 2008

compound pronouns

we spent sunday with the mister's mother's side of the family celebrating grandpa's 85th birthday. it was an incredible day. i'm not sure that anyone else there would describe it that way.

for them, it was a run of the mill family get together, not unlike the many other gatherings they have several times a year. i've been to a lot of these through the 8 years mister and i have been together.

something about this time struck me differently. i haven't said very much at all about my growing up experiences on this blog, and really most of you who read know already anyhow. but, having just visited my hometown two weeks ago (a generally awful trip, as per usual) the polar opposite-ness of it all was much more shocking than usual.

because, get this: this family LOVES to be together. this was hour upon hour of belly laughing, hugging, getting each other snacks and drinks. genuine interest in the goings on of each person's life. even me,. THEY CARE. this is quite foreign to me.

so very foreign, that it maybe took until now for me to BELIEVE them. these are incredible people. THIS is what family is supposed to be. it was beautiful.

and, as grandpa sat opening thoughtful and generous gifts from his family all seated around the table, many having flown in from hawaii just for this day, i looked around the room and saw people with their arms around each other, people thoroughly enjoying being together, and i imagined that grandpa must feel so fulfilled. what an incredible legacy he has built. what a fantastic family he has created and fostered. it is what it should be. what we should all aim for. and i felt deeply honored to be part of it.

a few pictures, which don't at all capture the warm tinglies i was feeling:

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Thursday, May 29, 2008

get it?

came across this at your typical moderately-scarylooking-a-little-too-hidden-away-chinese-buffet. it took me more than a few seconds to figure it out. once i did, i HAD to get a pic to share with you.

it's a sign on the buffet. take your time. let me know when you've got it.

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awesome, right? completely awesome.

Friday, May 16, 2008

did you see that??

i'm pretty sure i just got a comment about my "getinherhead" post from the inventor or president guy. i am SO cool.

kaia and i are going to california next week...just us girls. i'm definately excited, but super nervous to fly with her alone. she gets bored SO fast, and always wants to be moving on to another activity. and i just can't imagine her sleeping during the flight. i know i should just tell myself "you can only do your best, and you'll never see these people again." but i'm still totally anxious about it.

any tips for flying with a baby? also, for those of you who live in places that actually get sunshine...how do you protect your baby's skin? kaia's so super fair! i got her one of those cute floppy baby hats (we'll see how long it stays on her head) and some baby sunblock. is that sufficient?

last thing. a few days ago, kaia started laying her head down on my shoulder. i hadn't noticed that this wasn't happening until it did. and let me just say....it is the absolute sweetest most wonderful fantastic heartmelting blissful feeling of all time. she just gently lays her head down now and then, almost like a hug. she does it twice as much when she's sleepy. i can't get enough of it!
here we are on mother's day, she's laying her little head down!!

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Wednesday, April 30, 2008

life is like

a floppy worm.

i was outside briefly this afternoon while kaia, suffering from pneumonia, napped inside. i saw this little worm guy on the concrete. i couldn't figure out which was his head or butt, and where his underneath was. he was just flopping all over the place, trying to get somewhere shady to keep from dying in the (rare) portland sun. i mean, this worm, he was literally about one inch from a little shady weed. but it was two rolls one direction, flop to another direction, two rolls....it took him nearly 4 minutes to get to that shady weed.

and i said to myself, "i feel like that lately." knowing WHERE i need to be, but having no clue how to get there, and not being able to get there in any sort of timely manner. not knowing which is my head or butt, where my underneath is. so frustrated to see my shady weed within reach, but just keep flopping and rolling.

it was at this point in my thinking that it occurred to me that if i had sufficient time to think this deeply about a worm, i ought to be in bed making up for last night's sleeplessness. but i keep thinking about the worm today. i'm tempted to take comfort in knowing that he finally got to his shady weed, but that feels way to cheesy, and i haven't had enough sleep for that kind of optimism.

isn't the goal "from glory to glory?" why do i feel like i'm going "from hardship to harship?"

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Wednesday, April 23, 2008

living in the land of "what if"

my husband was very nearly killed tonight, no exaggerating necessary. on his way home from work someone in a huge truck ran a red light and came within a few feet of hitting his driver's side door. we're both very shaken up.

it's that weird thing where everything's completely fine...he's home just like always, no scratches on the car, nary a headache. but i can't pull my brain out of all the implications of WHAT IF??? what would my life look like tonight had someone's brakes failed or had my husband not seen it coming from the corner of his eye....if if if.

it's moments like this...like this and the time my brand new baby was rushed in an ambulance to another hospital for a laundry list of reasons....those kind of moments where you feel so humbled, so vulnerable...in search of how to say "thank you" in a way that doesn't sound offensive to a very big and gracious God.

our pastor was just talking about this at church sunday. that there's so much God does for us that we never even know about it. obviously, we know about this one, but it's such a reminder about everytime we get in the car and make it home safely.

so here it is, for all the world to hear...i am so grateful that God protected my husband. i'm so humbled by his goodness towards me. God is good...he is faithful and kind and full of compassion. and the thing is, had brakes failed tonight, those things would still be true....i'd just not see them quite as easily.

there is so much to be thankful for

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

dude, you're totally welcome

you guys know i'm an organizational freak right? like, full of list making skills and color coding and all that. it's less obvious now that i have a kid. but whatever. it's still in there somewhere, drowning in breastmilk. that's right, i just came right out and said breastmilk.

anway. my favorite thing du jour is this: www.getinherhead.com
go there. seriously. here's all the great things about it:

1. it's for dudes and chicks, cause there's also www.getinhishead.com
2. it will reminid you of important dates ahead of time so you're not up a creek without a gift
3. your significant other goes in and puts all this info about their sizes and preferences for EVERYTHING, food, restaurants, flower type, dream dates....on and on. then when you want to get them something or plan a date, it's all right there
4. you can schedule in periodic "out of the blue" reminders so that you can "spontaneously" show up with a card or flowers or whatever for no REAL reason
5. they've also come up with lists of top gifts for both genders, and great date ideas.

it really is incredible. and if any of you (or your spouses) are anything like my mister, this thing was designed with you in mind, and the overall success of your relationship.

so, check it out, and let me know if you decide to sign up (free) and if you like it. it's not like i invented it, or get paid to tell you. i just really like knowing when people do what i tell them.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

an update on the girl

(hey, if you hate baby blog posts, blame lori, she asked for it!)

kaia's a little over 6 months now. shocking and soooooo strange! i hate how true it is (and this comment gets so annoying to me...and i hear it about ten times a day) that it "goes so fast!" i took her to the pediatrician two weeks ago for a tune up, and the pediatrician exclaimed "oh! she's so advanced! developmentally she's more like a NINE MONTH OLD than 6!"

now i know i'm supposed to feel great about that. and exactly half of me does. but the other half feels like "noooooooooooooo!! it's already going so fast, now there are THREE WHOLE MONTHS i'll never even see?!?! stop this train!"

but there is no stopping it.

kaia's delightful though. really and truly. in most ways. she's still not sleeping through the night. not even at all. and she's still preferring me over any other human. but she sits up, and rolls in every direction. she's got two teeth on the bottom (as sharp as can be) and has started eating my delicious homemade baby food. and, this is the big one apparently, she's crawling. she's done the army crawl for awhile now. and then she started crawling backwards. she doesn't get her knees up underneath her all the way yet, but boy does she scoot around!

and, as much as people keep telling me she's huge, she's right in the middle of the weight scale thingy for 6 month old baby girls. so there, general public. she's only 16 precious pounds...how can that be huge?!

here's what lori really asked for though. pics. enjoy!

this is our family easter pic. the mister had just come home from his 5 day dudes trip to vegas...he hadn't slept in a long time...can you tell?!
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kaia likes bubbles. not in the traditional, giggling baby kind of way, but in the amazed and astounded sort of way.
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for easter, kaia had a little felt basket with a few eastery things from the dollar section of target. don't tell her! oh wait, she was there and wide awake when we bought it all!
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her first real sitting up by herself. (yes. i photograph EVERYTHING.)
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i decided to be the coolest mom ever and let kaia play with some blobs of avacado puree once she was done eating it. i'm pretty stoked about the result:
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just a little creativity...
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