Thursday, April 30, 2009

Keeping Up

For the record, I haven't fallen off the face of the earth and my house hasn't fallen stricken with the swine flu (or little miss piggie disease as one of the girls at work started calling it). I have just been busy... 5 day work week, sore throat, no friends to text because they're all on vacation and dinner needs to be made anyhow, types of busy.

May is usually a busy month for us. There will be 4 potlucks at work in the next week and there is a spring picnic this weekend for a coworker. Plus Lynn is still down visiting so i'd like to see her one more time before she goes.

Next weekend I work, it's Aiden/Eric/Jenette's birthday and mother's day. Then remarkably a slow week followed by memorial day weekend, baby Collin's first birthday party and the apricot festival. Not to mention working every Saturday this month and really wanting to take layla to the zoo or the ocean if the bad flu season dies down a little.

Last night I stayed up a little too late talking with the hubby and dreaming about a what if future that may some day be our reality if things ever get in the green instead of the red side of banking and it was nice. It was really nice. A good change from talking IRS calls, bills due, babysitting schedules and the perils of families that suck at being families. I needed it but I also carried it with me all day at work, a little too tired at work.

Right now, while layla plays at my feet and Jon naps upstairs I day dream of a new future, one filled with time for crafts, baking and baby's who clank things under my feet and that dream alone may be what keeps me going for a while.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Testing


I wasn't really that kid that tested all the limits of things. I loved using my imagination and from what I am told I behaved very well most of the time. Granted, as an older child I did get away with a lot of things that, lord willing, my parents will never find out about.
Jon on the other hand was the kind of kid that pushed a button 21 times, getting his hand slapped every time because he just had to push that button. Eventually, he would cry because he knew what was going to happen but he just had to do it anyhow.
Layla has developed to something in the middle. For the most part she's pretty good about stopping when you tell her something is "big trouble" to play with (Mommy doesn't use the word NO unless you can get hurt because I think people use NO too much and their kids get desensitised and one day you are outside yelling no while your kid ignores you and runs into traffic because you say no to everything....but back to what I was talking about before *steps off soap box*). What she is also really good at is taking the things she is allowed to touch and play with and experimenting to the limits with what she is allowed to do with them.

Examples
SCENARIO 1: You can touch your DVD boxes but not Daddy's. You can play with your DVD boxes but you can NOT open them. You can watch DVD's but you can't touch the player. You can touch the remote but you can't push the buttons while the TV is on...ect.
SCENARIO 2: The following things are allowed to be climbed on...willing people, beds, toys, chairs, furniture in the living room, the toy box lid, the piano stool, the playground equipment, the kitchen furniture when there is no food being served, the stairs, and your toys. The following items can not be climbed, kitchen appliances, kitchen counters, the window from the living room to the kitchen, toys with wheels, and newly added to the list...the bouncing zebra while standing using NO hands (but while holding on is ok).

Is it pool time yet?

While the central valley had a brief hot spell earlier this month I found myself compelled to buy things like blue balls, and inflatable back yard pools and lastly...this little pink intertube. The "floaty ring" in question was purchased at the dollar store so I figured I would blow it up and see what fun situations a child can get in with a blow up 99 cent circle...

Well for starters in the picture above she had just went from laying on her back to walking her feet through the hole above her and then she flipped herself sideways. She also played various games of "it's a pillow", "it's a toss ring", "it's a chair", "it's for pulling George" around by the neck and even "it's for playing peek-a-boo through"...

Imagine how much fun she'll have once she figures out it floats in water.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

What, another playdate?


This week Layla's plate has been really full...so has Mommy's. Layla ended up getting to play with Aiden & Collin, North and Pheonix all within a couple days of each other. By the last playdate which was with Lynn & Pheonix she was pretty well ok with the concept of playing together. A couple times she ran up to him and tried to get him to play along. She only hit once and it was to try and get his attention. Pheonix who wasn't feeling well and who isn't used to playing with other kids his age was totally freaked out the whole time.
At first I lectured her a bit about the first "hit" where she scared him. After that I let her figure out on her own that he just wasn't interested in playing with her. As luck would have it, a couple hours after we took them back home Georgie came over and played long and hard with Layla for about an hour and a half. So when she went to bed I didn't feel quite as bad as I did earlier in the day that she wasn't having enough fun on her weekend with Mommy.
All Mommy's go through that, the wanting more or less out of playdates. Layla isn't getting enough kid interaction as far as I am concerned so we're going to pick up some more toddler activities soon. She's not a bully yet, but I don't want her to be one. She's not a cry baby anymore, which is good because that get's old fast no matter who's kid is whining. Now we're in the middle somewhere in desperate need of a sibling or a Baby BFF.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

My top 10's

I got tagged for a top 5 top 10s email thing so here it is!

Top foods
1 el jardin chicken tacos and salsa
2 my mom's taters and eggs
3 dad's bbq tri tip
4 Italian sausage and penne with red onions and tomatoes and balsamic
5 turkey subs with avocado
6 outback's baked potato soup
7 chocolate mice from old thyme pasteries
8 shrimp wrapped in bacon
9 stuffed mushrooms
10 chocolate brownies

Top movies
1 American outlaws
2 usual suspects
3 scream
4 7 brides for 7 brothers
5 iron man
6 hot fuzz
7 sword and the stone
8 my fair lady
9 constantine
10 fight club

Top people
1 my hubby
2 layla
3 daddy
4 mommy
5 George
6 grandpa Kenneth
7 Jeromy
8 jen
9 Lynn
10 my aden r.i.p.

Top gadgets
1 blackberry phone
2 laptops
3 my camera
4 the food processor
5 google
6 the library internet portal
7 blogging
8 the pen and paper without lines
9 Rachel Ray magazine
10 things that entertain my husband and daughter while I cook dinner

Top of my style
1 flip flops or salt water sandals
2 my only pair of good jeans
3 the nighty I've had so long it's falling apart
4 piggy tails and pony tails
5 recycling T-shirts
6 single diamond earrings
7 my sunglasses
8 my big red purse
9 yoga pants and my rock n roll tank top
10 sticky toddler kisses and finger prints

*this was written from my phone so I'm sorry if the capitals or formatting goes crazy

Top 5 too 10s

I got tagged for a top 5 top 10s email thing and I decided it would fun to do it on this blog from layla's point of view so here it is!

Top foods
1 m & m's or fruit snacks I can eat with my fingers
2 Salisbury steak TV dinners
3 eggs
4 pancakes
5 sausages
6 pasta
7 steak or ribs
8 chicken mcnuggets
9 corn
10 bread w peanut butter

Top movies
1 tinkerbelle
2 jungle book
3 cars
4 Jack's big music show
5 robots
6 Aladdin
7 sword n the stone
8 sleeping beauty
9 little mermaid
10 transformer's

Top people
1 daddy
2 mommy
3 George
4 Erin
5 nana
6 papa glen & nana scaries
7 Jeromy
8 jen
9 papa mark and nana shu shu with puppies
10 north when we go to the park

Top gadgets (for obvious reason's I switched this to things)
1 cow
2 flash cards
3 night night spot
4 tinkerbelle
5 balls
6 bowls of water
7 cars
8 crayons and paper
9 my kitchen toys
10 things with buttons i'm not supposed to have

Top of my style
1 white salt water sandals
2 pink and pink striped hoodie
3 jammies with feet
4 piggy tails and hair clippies
5 skirts with shorts built into them
6 bright colored t shirts
7 my sunglasses
8 bathing suits and bath towels
9 my favorite hat from marley
10 mommy and daddy's shoes

*this was written from my phone so I'm sorry if the capitals or formatting goes crazy

Friday, April 24, 2009

She'll have the ribs

For a little bit yesterday, we did get to stop by Lynn's parents house and visit her and the little man. I brought Layla a cheeseburger with me because it would be dinner time soon. They offered me a rib after I got there and I took one, only to be handed the cheeseburger and have my rib taken away. Then she ate most of it...just like this.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Mommy Needs a Time Out!


This week my plate is too full or my pot is boiling over or whatever other silly saying you'd like to insert. It's just too much. I'm normally someone who thrives on a little challenge but I think I've met my match.
Here is a short list of things in my bucket of badness this week...
  • Layla had a stomach flu
  • The IRS told me they lost my auto deposit and I had to call the IRS and the bank several times in 10 minute breaks at work
  • Work has been busy and the members are being jerks for some reason this week
  • The landlord called twice
  • Rent was late (see above)
  • I've been on my cycle for 11 days again this time (so far)
  • Jon and I got to have an adult talk in the bedroom (which is never fun)
  • My bills seemed to be able to get paid by the IRS tax return, they told me I would get...only to get a letter today to tell me that I am not, in fact getting a tax return
  • My BFF is visiting and I barely get to see her
  • Layla was totally freaked out after spending the day with a new sitter
  • My mom isn't like my mom anymore
  • I can't get ahold of my pastor

That's the short list...there is a little Jon's family drama, some vacation canceling and my personal favorite a tiny bit of "oh shit we're out of diapers" to throw in there too...

I need some Tinkerbelle movie time outs myself this week.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

When the System Sucks

Some of my mail this month went missing someplace between the mailbox and the destination. My IRS deposit on "check my refund" says it should have been here on the 21st and it's the 22nd and my bank has no record of it even trying to come in yet.

My landlord is all over the place about the fact that she needs a rent check ASAP or she's going to send me a 3 day or quit notice, which is funny because EVERYONE in my complex had their rent check "missing" this month and she has already told me that.

Jon's schedule keeps changing and his mom needs a job done at her house ASAP. The baby is still a little sick. My BFF is here visiting and I can't go see her because of all of the above until tomorrow...at the earliest.

Today sucks.

A Simple Mommy Earth Day Vow

video

I was one of those girls who spent my childhood waiting to be grown up so I could be a mommy. I sat around reading books & planning futures filled with homemade baby food, clothe diapers, breast milk and attachment parenting. I wasted a little time along the way, fully enjoying my young adult years and then waiting for Mr. Right to find me in a rain storm. And then I let life change some of my ideals into just common sense answers based on what my first little princess needed to be happy, safe and well.

But, somethings will never change about the way I think about raising my daughter. I will always strive to give her confidence, independence, creativity, humor and a sense of belonging that can only be grown in a whole lot of love. I will do my best to teach her to do what feels right, to protect her morals and beliefs and to experience life to the fullest.

I promise her that I will make a commitment to helping her world be a better place. Be that through cultivating plants in the windows, or by shopping organic, or by trying to be a "greener" person... or if it really comes down to it... by just teaching her to love the earth... by letting her put mud in her hair and play with the faucet while I'm in the back yard.

Happy Earth Day and may the children in your life inspire you today to make a commitment to change...

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

A little bit

Last night was filled with baby bribery. Eventually she managed to hold down some 7up and french fries. She got up this morning at 5:15 and had some fever meds and pedialyte for breakfast with her cheerios.

I'd love to stay home with her but I have no sick time due to being forced to stay home earlier this month. So I'll go to work and have the sitter text me every hour until Jon gets home at 9.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Growing Up


I used to sit on the sprinkler and giggle. I splashed around in little pink bathing suits in tropical printed blow up pools. I made mud pies. I made messes. I learned to find calm in the water and the earth.
So now I wander outside to find her with the faucet on, ankle deep in mud, rocks and mischief and I just sit down and watch.
It never hurt anyone to learn freedom by tasting it.

A Night of 30 Something


Some of my favorite people are almost 30, turning 30 or just recently turned 30. This weekend was my Cousin Jeromy's suprise 30th birthday dinner at Cool Hand Luke's (that's him in the green).
Layla was an angel sitting at the dinner table for almost 3 hours playing, eating and being a good girl with only 1 random freak out before we actually got seated at the table. George bought her a Tinkerbelle doll which she played with through most of the after meal fun.
Then people got together to hang out. Which, ended by 11:30 because we are all old and we were tired. And that good people is the first sign you're getting closer to 30 somethings than 20 somethings.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Little People


Yesterday we went to the park to play with Layla's little buddy North. Well...they don't exactly play with each other yet, mostly they play next to each other (like the picture above on side by side swings). It's neat to see where their little personalities are different being as they were born on the same day.
Layla is head strong, independent and determined to find adventure. North is curious, quiet and patient. Layla wants to run off to the next thing while North wants to examine the thing he has more closely.
Of course, Layla's sense of adventure ended with her getting hit in the face with a swingset and having a minor nose bleed/freak out. While North with his gentle nature wandered around making friends with other kids playing in the bark.
Maybe if we get lucky a little of North will rub off on Layla and I won't have to invest her college fund in band-aids.
** And yes that is the big purple bruise on Layla's head from her fall in the house earlier this week**

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Booked

It was a busy week, followed by a busy weekend with Easter, followed by another busy week, which is leading right into another booked weekend. It's part of being an adult and having kids, you are always busy with something.

Tomorrow laylabug has a playdate and then Saturday there is a family birthday thingy and then Sunday Lynn will be down to visit from Washington so I know laylabug and I will want to rush to the tiny town I grew up in to see her and my god son.

Next week will be incredibly long as I count down the moments until the weekend and some much needed girl time with the bff.

I know it's just getting started. May means I am working weekends at the job and that's also the month of too many birthday parties and mother's day.

I'd say that I can't wait until June but by then I'll have that month booked too.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

To Cut or Not to Cut


I know baby may look like she needs a hair cut but I'm just terrified of horrible toddler bangs. Most of the time we can get by with a pony tail or a well placed clip. Mommy is better at this than daddy. Then yesterday Layla tripped and hit her head, resulting in a purple egg bruise on her forehead (not pictured yet) and suddenly I am very happy we have too long bangs. At least now they'll think I don't do her hair instead of thinking I beat her on Easter.
For the record, the head bump scared me so badly that I got up at least 8 times last night to make sure she didn't have a concussion and that she was still in fact breathing and alive.
And unrelated... I am not pregnant, again. Fertility drugs are a mighty big pain in the neck but I will be taking them again next month as we keep trying so...pray for us... because Layla needs someone to play with who is neither a brat or a bully. And, to make sure I like that other kid, I'd really like to make it myself.

She's like Cheesecake

Today is my BFF from the land of Far Far Away's birthday. She'll be turning old enough to know better and too young to remember that before she tries it anyhow. Lynn (or Pheonix's Mommy as some of you know her here in blog land) has always been filled with wild strokes of artistic nature, sarcasm littered with humor and a dash of homemade earth mommy good sense. That's why I keep her around.

When we were young she was willing to play badmitten for 3 hours straight after school, she swam in chlorinated water until we looked like over cooked prunes every day of summer and she would jump rope to bad music because it was the cool thing to do.

In junior high she was a voice of reason at 2 am telling you that you better go to sleep before your dad came back in, the one most likely not to stir up the boy drama and the only reason I passed math.

In highschool she was my partner in countless games of pool, my advisor for all things make-up related and the only person who ever talked me into doing something stupid that I'm still proud of doing today.

Then we spent a few years apart and when we found each other we were both new Mommy's with totally different lives in totally different states and we found that no matter how seperate you are in miles you can always find a way to feel not alone with free weekend minutes and text messages at 1 am.

She talked me through when I didn't have a job, she texted me through when I had a job I hated and she remembers damn near everything I've ever told her. She knows more than I do about a lot of things and she calls me when she has a question about something I know about because she's a kind enough person to know when she needs help. She's usually helping other people put out their drama and she even takes out the trash. She's smart but she's still willing to talk about absolutely nothing for two hours on the phone.

I'm pretty sure she's embarrassed I wrote this, but I wrote it anyway... because I think she's a damn good person, a great mom and a pretty terrific hippy...with or without the two pigtails in her hair.

And it's her birthday... everyone deserves to know they are loved on their birthday. And until I can tell her in person... (in 4 days not that I'm counting- ok I'm totally counting)... I love you Miss Lynn... You're better to me than cheesecake!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Put Baby in Water and Stir?

That's why they call it an Easter dress, right? Because they can only wear it once on Easter and then it's covered in rasberry juice, chocolate smears and drenched with water from playing with the facet in the back yard?

After this I let her run around naked with just her shoes on. That also went over very well but will not be posted on the public blog. We save embarrassment for family only, or at least until the first boy you bring home in highschool looks too risky, then we're totally breaking out the "you played naked with a bowl of water pictures".

She had fun though, and that is the most important part of celebrating redemption.

Don't Call it Bunny Day


101 pictures, $100 dollars and 99 bad jokes later...Easter is over. The planner in me is already acknowledging the next holiday on the list and the mommy in me wants a nap.


Easter was a lot more fun when I was 4 and there was no work. Although, apparently it gets fun again when you become a grandparent and you get to sugar up a kid for a whole day and laugh at them.


Layla had a lot of sugar yesterday. The result was the two fold, it was the first time she ever yelled in the house just to be loud, and there was a lot of running in circles.


The most memorable moment from Easter though would be my child fully clothed in her Easter dress getting into a bowl of water in the back yard to play. And, because I am cool mom, I just took pictures and let her do it. You're only little once.


Pictures will be up on Layla's site soon. In the meantime, here is one to hold you over (pre Easter dress...but during the bunny ears phase).

Friday, April 10, 2009

Question.

Why do people ask questions they don't want the answers to? Do you really want to know what that omen means? Do you want to know the details of someone else's political convictions? For that matter do I want to know whether or not you want me to go away at 4:45 in the morning?

 It's been a rough couple days. The baby wasn't feeling well. I wasn't feeling well. Jon has been shouldering the brunt of the parenting as a result.

The full moon hit full of crazies for two days straight at work and money has been tight. All my friends are struggling with something and the world seems a little dark this morning on the way to work.

I cried in the shower. The brimming over of a night too filled with stress and topped off with a hubby who woke up on the wrong side of the bed (or in this case with toddler feet on his face). There was a cramp in my neck from the baby who slept with her face on my face. Then I got in my car and decided I was going to go through a drive thru for breakfast, which I seldom do. 

I drove through the rain without even a radio playing. Overwhelmed. There in the McDonald's parking lot there was a woman, soaking wet and in nothing but a hospital gown (nothing underneath and no shoes), carrying what looked like someone else's bag.

So I asked the McD employee if they had called 911. And got back a "why she's not bothering us" so I pulled over after I got my order and called myself. She's not bothering anyone, but she is going to kill herself with pneumonia if we aren't helping her.

Turns out 911 had been looking for her for awhile and so I got out of my car and talked to her for a minute and then left unnoticed when they showed up. Poor thing.  

But, I had to ask him. So there I was stuck dealing with his answer and getting wet hair. 

Figures.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Easter's a Comin'

I spent a lot of time this month asking other people what Easter was like where they grew up. I had great Easters as a kid but they were usually spread across three houses in three towns in one day and so I always felt scheduled and a little rushed.

I was not really sure what Easter at home was going to look like, but I think I've figured it out.

Layla will get a modest basket from the Easter Bunny this year, filled with both educational toys and junk toys, as well as a movie and some candy that mostly Mommy and daddy will eat. There will be a matching Easter dress with little white sandals. There will be the hiding of the plastic eggs and then finding them (no dyed eggs this year, she's too young). For this year, there will be talk about Jesus amoungst the adults but until next year we won't try and get Layla to listen to why we all gather together to celebrate. But, we might go to church.

Lastly, there will be food. My dad & his girlfriend will stop by, maybe my mom, a friend or two and maybe a cousin. And we'll all eat. And we'll laugh... mostly we'll probably laugh about how stressed out I was about Easter until right before it ACTUALLY happened.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Phlewie

I guess phlewie isn't a word but it does sum up how I feel. I am tired, my head hurts and I could randomly throw up without notice although that hasn't happened yet.

I took a baby on board test on Friday which informed me that I was not pregnant as far as it could tell. So maybe I'm just stressed out or something.

As of this exact moment I have no idea what I will be doing for Easter. Which is very unlike me. But the Easter bunny has his crap together so at least I don't have to worry about that.

Last night I found myself comparing life to a wolf pack where everyone has to pitch in to survive. Today I feel like the wolf who's job it is to take a nap. Hopefully the rest of the pack can pitch in while I sleep. I know Jon already did. Bless his heart he cleaned the backyard I was going to do on Saturday in case everyone is coming here for bbq on Easter.

He makes a damn good alpha.

Santa Cruz Planning


I desperately want to take my child to experience the board walk in Santa Cruz. I am trying to plan a little trip for the weekend of the 25th for my little family of three and some friends.

Taffy, sand, surf, clam chowder, noisy rides, cotton candy... you know you want to go...
Mainly, it will be babies first trip to the ocean. We'll probably also stop at a secluded beach somewhere so she can run around but I'd like to also do some testing of the amusement park status with a toddler.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Start All Over


Yes, I know I just totally used the title of a Miley Cyrus song for a blog name. But, it was a good blog name. Not so much a good song, but you can't win them all.
I'm back at work this week for a full 5 days straight. I'm counting down all at once to Lynn's visit and Easter (which are 7 days apart). I'm also anxious to learn what Mel is having, her ultrasound is tomorrow. My cousin is having a girl. Yay pink!
Did you see the awesome picture my husband got at the park today. We use the same tactic. Take 50 pictures, hope for 10 keepers. I think he found an awesome one.

I feel like my mind is in 23 places at once. I feel like my to do list keeps getting written over the top of.
Oddly, I am not overwhelmed. I just feel like I keep starting over.

Monday, April 06, 2009

Sunshine


Today the weather outside is warm and sunny. The breeze that was tormenting my allergies all last week has seemed to finally pass. I came home today planning to take my daughter to the park, only to find out she'd already been with Daddy. Great minds think alike. At least when it comes to thinking about sunshine.

Sunday, April 05, 2009

FatGirlEats Links


It has been brought to my attention that the sidebar link for Fat Girl Eats wasn't working this week. It is now. There are new recipes up too. Go check it out!!

Many Little Milestones


It's amazing how quickly kids check off one milestone after another. That first year was measured by months and weeks for rolling over, sitting up, walking but the second year... it seems to be measured in moments.
Last night Layla said "asian". Why? Because it sounded like fun when someone else at the house said it and everyone laughed. She sleeps in a big girl bed, she uses a booster seat, she wipes her own face, and she now uses the following sentence for permission to watch movies ... "O a moovie, I watch , see it."
That's all just stuff she started doing this week. Two of those things are within the last 3 days.
It's crazy how fast she's developing. Yesterday she tried shaking a shelf to get the items (candies) at the top to fall down to her (just like Balou does for bananas in jungle book) and it worked. She brought them to me and asked me to 'popin it pease' (pop it open please).
I feel like I would have to blog every day from start to finish to be able to even slightly remember all the cool stuff she does each day. Of course, I'm too lazy for that...so you get posts like this instead.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

A Little Reminder

This week Jon moved Layla into the "big girl bed" in her room for a nap. She liked it so much she's been there ever since. She was ready. Mommy wasn't. I worried in bed most of the night and I cried all the way to work.

God new I needed a little moment to catch myself back in control of my mommyhood. So last night Layla decided all on her own to crawl on to my lap while I was rocking in my chair and asked me to "sking her" after much baby sign language and frustration and repeating the word "sking" I decided she wanted me to sing to her.

So I did.

For 45 minutes I rocked and sung. I hummed and ran my fingers through the last of her baby fine hair by her face. I held her to me while her face pushed itself against by breast where she could hear my heart and her little hand wandered into my shirt to touch my skin and I watched her fade.

Her worries melted, her posture loosened and eventually she drifted off to slip right there on my chest.

And then I knew...she'd always be my baby... no matter how big her bed gets.

Joy

I was prompted for yet another blog MIME thingy. This one is about JOY. I'm supposed to list 6 things (random number no?) which give me joy and tag 2 other people to do that same. So... here I go...

I get a lot of joy from reading fiction books about supernatural creatures which I can relate to. I enjoy the Mercy Thompson series by Patricia Briggs because the lead character reminds me of my friend Lynn. I love the Succubus Blues books by Richelle Mead because the erractic book store employees remind me of a job I once had working Renaissance faires. I love the Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyers because I love the witty banter between Bella and Edward (more evident in the book than the movie). I love the Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris because the southern locals remind me of people in my family, and the people I grew up around. I also have a found place in my heart for the Kelley Armstrong books about the Clairvoyant Chloe Saunders because she wants to be so normal in an environment that is filled with other people's drama. Who can't relate to that.

I ironically get the same amount of joy from Hallmark movies. I especially like the Love series which follows a family of Christian settlers who have to make there way through a harsh land following what God tells them to do. (Not anything like the supernatural stuff I read I assure you).

I get a great amount of joy from cooking, eating, reading about and otherwise exploring new foods. I love the time of year when the produce stands are open and everything is fresh and wonderfully ripe smelling in the summer sun. I love bringing those foods home and making them to share with my friends and family. I also love going out to eat so that I can bring ideas about new things to try home with me.

I love and get great joy from spending time with my family and friends playing games and laughing about nothing. I'm definitely a people person. I love boring moments in front of a movie with the hubby or chasing the baby around the kitchen dancing like a dork. I enjoy when company comes calling and stays longer than expected and when people come to visit.

I get joy from feeling compelled. I don't care if it's that tugging of your heart strings by God himself, a test from the devil that you've got to beat, the words of a friend, the sentiments of stranger or even the songs of the windchimes in the breeze. I love that wind makes me want to twirl, twilight makes me want to whisper and my dreams make me want to explore the life I have been given.

I tag Lynn (who likes having things to write about) and Courtney (who might actually do this if I tag her)

Friday, April 03, 2009

My Herbs

On Wednesday, I made a little trip to the local nursery at the Target and found myself a nice selection of grow in your home herbs, and a window-sill potted tomato plant. I miss having plants in my home and as part of my green commitment I decided to go get some. Houseplants, which had been on my original list...refused to speak to me. So the herbs and I headed home where they got potted, watered and thrust into the "greenhouse" window over my kitchen sink, where hopefully I will remember to keep them watered and they will grow into something cool for Layla to be able to pick and eat.

Green commitment, done and done.

Lifetime commitment to keeping something fragile alive...well... I'll work on it.

Raising a Good Eater


At the table for my birthday breakfast, I had to stiffle my proud mom instincts when the person sitting next to me complimented how well Layla eats. Jon and I have done an excellent job of creating a child that is both adventurous with food and very organized about how she consumes it. The end result is someone that (once you get her to try the first bite of something) will usually content herself to eat pretty neatly with her own utensils throughout the meal.
I've been very blessed that at this point she's pretty well over shoving things in her mouth. She's also gotten to be very good about always wanting to use a utensil or cup with a straw and not really spilling much. Her patience on waiting for food to arrive needs work but other than that I think we've earned a gold star.
Of course somethings are harder to eat than others. The chinese food pictured above was noticably a struggle but she managed.
One other neat thing we've noticed about Layla lately. She won't eat if she's not hungry. That's pretty rare in kids this young. Usually if you offer a kid a bite of cake they'll eat it...but if she isn't in the mood for cake or she's already full from dinner...she'll pass. Just ask George...he tried twice to share birthday cake with her on Sunday.
I've also been checking things off the baby food mental list. Spicy foods, sweet foods, ethnic foods, weird textured foods, unique foods etc. So far she's been pretty open. Except apricots. I can get her to eat an occassional green bean now but the apricots are still not ok. Very very not ok.

What about your kids (or you if you don't have any)? What do they/you like to eat? Are you/they good eaters?

Thursday, April 02, 2009

"The Moment" - Fictional Writing Prompt

There are somethings you know you'll never forget. Those moments when your standing right in the middle of something and it clicks inside your head. I'll always remember this, you tell yourself. Sometimes you do really remember that moment forever. It becomes a switch in the back of your head waiting to be accidently hit. Good or bad, it is always with you.

In that long list of moments that you carry around with you forever there is always one moment. That moment, which most people refer to as "the moment" is usually the moment in life by which all other moments are defined. The moment for some people is the first time they knew real love, or hate, or happiness, or fear. The moment has an emotional connection that when triggered effects every moment around it. Most people know "the moment" when it happens to them.

Some figure it out several years too late.

Looking back I can tell you the moment I knew my life was going to be different than everyone else's life I knew. At the time it was just another day, and it swept passed me in the rush of chores to be done and tasks to accomplish. I missed the importance of it all. Looking back now, I can't even tell you what was so urgent of the daily life that I was trudging through. What I can tell you is this.

When met with the opportunity to change a life forever to a life easier, less worried and more free if you instead decided to pick the hard, broken and stressful path that will take you into doing the right thing just because it's the right thing thusly dragging yourself over and through a thousand obstacles both emotionally and physically to avoid the harm of another soul...well then... you've had a moment. Perhaps even "the moment" depending on who you are.

So when you look someone in the eyes and you know that you love them. When you can tell them in words and they can feel it consume them with hope. And you don't tell them...because you know if you do they'd be stuck forever with you in the struggle between good and evil. Know this, that may or may not be your defining moment. But more than likely, it's going to be theirs.

Book Worms


I love to read. I got it from my mother. My mom read so much when I was little that my friends from elementary school have vivid memories of my mom in her tattered blue bath robe and my dad's thermal socks sitting in a rocking chair popping sunflower seeds to the rhythm of her rocking and reading paperback books with scraps of mail as book marks. Most of my memories of coming home from anywhere involve finding my parents either playing a game in my dad's office or my mom in that chair reading and eating those seeds.


So, I'm not entirely suprised that my kid has a natural fascination with books. After all, she sees me reading at least twice a day if not more. And, most of the time if she comes across a book while playing she has you read it to her. She will also bring me books to read if she catches me reading my book without her and wants some attention.
For now her book collection is limited because I don't want her to destroy her lovely little library when she's supposed to be napping. So I boxed up the big kid books and put them in the closet leaving out a collection of about 25 books that all have sturdy pages for her explore until I feel she's ready (or until she stops pulling everything off her shelves for me to pick it up...whichever comes first).
So far her favorites are the Hermie and Friends books, The Ladybug book from Great Aunt Winnie, I love you through and through and the Doggy book she got from ShuShu and PapaMark. The books she loves are already improving her vocabulary and she points things out on the pages as you read along. So we got some flash cards, which when the mood strikes her she is totally willing to play with.
This month in my effort to stay more green I'm also going to try and spend a little more time on books and a little less time with the TV on in the background. I know that Layla will like that. As it is, when she's home with Mommy I try to make sure there is a chunk of time every day without outside stimulation (radio/tv/interruptions from mom) so that she can develop good imagination skills.
I'll keep you posted if she comes up with any more favorites.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Little Green Month

One of my girl-friends at the new J O B is challenging everyone to be more "green" during the month of April. She (on behalf of the girl scout troup she runs) asked us to make 10 commitments for the month of April to help save the planet a little at a time. These are my 10 commitments (she had a list of ideas so some are from that and some are my own). I would like to challenge you blog universe to do the same and make the world a better place this month (or longer if the mood strikes you).

Jon and I are already mildly "green" people. So I picked somethings that I sometimes do and am commiting to ALWAYS doing them this month as well as some things I've never done.

1. I will plant 1 plant/tree for each person in my family.
2. I will ALWAYS recycle my cans/cardboard products.
3. I will stop wasting leftovers and unused foods by buying with a meal plan that uses my leftover food.
4. I will ALWAYS attempt to get local fresh foods.
5. I will ALWAYS commit to buying 50% organic when shopping.
6. I will ALWAYS recycle or reuse items I need by both getting and giving things to people I know when I am done with them so that they can use them. (I am pretty good about doing this with baby clothing/things but I'm awful about doing it with adult stuff)
7. I will drink more water and I will not drink water from plastic bottles from vending machines unless it's unavoidable.
8. I will use this month to teach my child about 1 more "green" process than I normally would.
9. I will ALWAYS refuse extra paper napkins when I go out.
10. I will ALWAYS be aware of how much power is being used in my home by unplugging unnecessary items and turning things off when I am not using them.