Sunday, June 02, 2013

Those Funny Moments

Today I put my little girl down for her nap and as I walked out of her room I was hit by one of those waves of love and 'how lucky am I' feelings. She was clearly ready for her nap - we'd played hard with Daddy all morning and then gone for walk to see the ducks and geese and turtles at the Nature Center. So she had curled up against my shoulder, clutching her Knuffle Bunny and keeping her hands and arms up against my chest like she does. I sang her songs, put her down and walked out. And bam....I was thinking of how lucky I am, and how content I feel. On crazy rushed days, when I'm wondering if I'm doing a good job as a mom and a wife, if I'm not fulfilling my full potential; when Alice is screeching or upset because I can't understand what she wants or didn't give in when she wanted to eat crayons or play in the toilet or any of a number of things, these moments seem faraway. But they happen a lot more than I think they do on the bad days. Even on the bad days.

And I wonder, 'why was I so worried about doing things the "right" way back when she was a newborn?' When we're ready and we have baby number 2 and I'm trying to sleep and feed and keep up with a newborn and a toddler and I'm wishing I could go back to those long afternoons reading while Alice would nurse and then fall asleep - I wish I could tell myself back then - ENJOY THIS! STOP WORRYING about screwing her up or spoiling her or not teaching her good habits or teaching her bad habits!

But life isn't like that. So I am going to have to remember that there are moments in the craziness where everything feels right and I am going to need those to get through the (many) moments that are crazy, and I'm feeling completely inadequate, and I'm snipping at my husband and he's snipping at me because we're both exhausted....

Well, I just have to re-read this blog post and remember that at this moment, Alice loves to snuggle on my lap before bedtime and naptime and hug her bunny and listen to me sing. And that I'm lucky.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Getting to Know Me (again)

Getting to Know Me
 (because I don't have any idea of a more original blog post)

1) Are you a vegetarian? Nope, but I try to eat vegetarian at least once a week

2) Do you believe in Heaven? Rationally, no; but I really WANT to believe in some form of heaven emotionally

3) Have you ever come close to dying? Not that I know of....

4) Jewelry you wear all the time? I wear my wedding ring every day; I used to wear the necklace I got from Nick all the time, until it became too dangerous with a baby/toddler

5) Do you eat the stems of broccoli? Yes

6) Do you color your hair? Not all the time, but I really want to try hair watercolors

7) What do you wear to bed? boxers and a tshirt

8) Have you ever done anything illegal? Yes

9) Can you roll your tongue? Yep

10) Electric razor or blade? Blade

11) What kind of shoes usually? running shoes

12) Pro-choice or anti-abortion? pro choice

13) What is your natural hair color? Sort of a blondish-brown color

14) Future child’s name? Not going to tell anybody

15) If you could go anywhere in the world where would it be? One place? I have to choose only one? England, I guess....The Galapagos Islands....Africa

16) Do you sleep with stuffed animals? Not unless you count my husband

17) If you won the lottery, what would you do first? Gosh, pay off debt; put a ton away for my kids and nieces and nephews; go on an amazing vacation; establish a scholarship

18) Gold or platinum/white gold? Platinum or white gold

19) Hamburger or hot dog? If it's from a grill - a hot dog

20) If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life, what would it be? chocolate

21) City, beach or country? Which city? Which beach? Seriously - I need details, sorry.

22) What was the last thing you touched? keyboard, to type this

23) Where did you eat last? Table

24) When’s the last time you cried? This last Sunday

25) Do you read blogs? Too many probably

26) Would you ever go out dressed like the opposite sex? Do jeans count for this or are we talking a suit and tie?

27) Ever been involved with the police? My cousin is a police officer

28) What’s your favorite shampoo and soap? Aveda Shampure

29) Do you talk in your sleep? Sometimes

30) Ocean or pool?

31) Window seat or aisle? Window

32) Ever met anyone famous?

33) Do you feel that you’ve had a truly successful life? In some ways

34) Do you twirl your spaghetti or cut it? I twirl and cut

35) Ricki Lake or Oprah Winfrey? Neither

36) Basketball or Football? I guess I'd choose basketball

37) How long do your showers last? Too long, especially if I have to shave

38) Automatic or stick shift? Automatic

39) Cake or ice cream? Ice cream AND cake, but not necessarily together

40) Are you self-conscious? Yes

41) Have you ever drunk so much you threw up? Yes, but not for a LONG time

42) Have you ever given money to a homeless person? Yes; but I prefer to give food

43) Have you been in love? Yes

44) Where do you wish you were? On vacation with my family

45) Do you wear socks with your shoes? Yes, depending on the shoe

46) Last gift you received? Flowers, gift card for a massage

47) Last sport you played? I can't even remember

48) Things you spend a lot of money on? my daughter, bills

49) Where do you live? In an apartment

50) Where were you born? Kansas

51) Last wedding attended? My best friend's, a while ago

52) Most hated food(s)? Anything that triggers my gag reflex

53) What’s your favorite food? I don't really have one - but I'd guess chocolate, my husband's macaroni and cheese,

54) Can you sing? I think the real question is can I sing well because EVERYONE can sing - but yes, I can sing

67) Last place you went on vacation? South Dakota

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Last night, N. and I finally finished the series finale of Weeds. Yes, this is out of date, I mean, it ended awhile ago. But we started this show awhile ago, and then we stopped watching for awhile and finally started to finish it up. Naturally, after it was all concluded we weighed in and surprise, found out that we had opposite opinions. Well, somewhat opposite. Nick is always a fan of the not-so-happy, dark endings. I am a fan of the happy, not-so-dark endings. With this show though, with its dark humor and subject matter I wasn't expecting a happy ending. I did expect some loose ends to be tied up. And as always, I felt sad because I always feel sad when a favorite show is done. But I didn't expect the ending we got. WTH?!

First off, it seemed like the people who wrote this episode knew NOTHING about the characters. I wasn't expecting bluebirds and rainbows and everything is perfect. But I kept waiting for the bonds that they'd all made to each other - the ones that kept the Botwins together for 8 seasons to show up. Andy had completely cut Nancy out of his life? Uh-uh. Silas was married to a total B***ch (even though it was his first love - and I did LIKE her character) and didn't feel the need to at least be a mediator. No way - he's too sweet for that. Shane was a mess. Totally nailed that. Doug a cult leader - was awesome. That was hilarious and silly and insanely believable.

Nancy: is a widow again. Yep, that was just a given. She's finally successful and wealthy and legitimate. And that's great. That part was pretty cool.  She and Andy being a romantic couple. Nope. I am usually the big fan of the two leads getting together. But Andy and Nancy are the ultimate partnership and they didn't need to be romantically entwined for that. They were friends, partners, confidantes, etc. Yes, I know Andy was supposedly in love with Nancy. I didn't really buy it, but okay. And yes, the scene where they finally have sex was heartwrenching because she was only doing it to make sure he didn't leave. But then suddenly, it's like - what happened? Andy leaves and never speaks to her again, because she's "bad for him." Maybe, but he's a grown up. And they had such a strong bond I never ever got this. I was happy for his life. I didn't want that to change - he finally got to own a restaurant and have a kid. But to not be at all connected to Nancy or Shane or Stevie? Nope, no way. After all they'd been through, Nancy and Andy would have still kept in touch. They wouldn't have got together. He'd still need to be far away. But they would still have each others backs. And that, right there, was the problem with the whole episode.

Shane: ohmygod. Totally nailed this. He was a troubled kid at the beginning of the series and just got worse. Becoming a cop with alcohol problems. Okay. Trashy? Maybe not so much, but I was willing to suspend disbelief. HE was the brother whose childhood Nancy screwed up. Heck, it was screwed up before all of the drugs and running and him murdering someone. He was there when his father died. So yes, he had every reason to be bitter and angry and destructive and resentful toward his mother. But he's not. He's the one that wants to help her all the time. He's the one that still has some growing up to do. He still needs her and at the end let's her help him. No, he's not angry or resentful.'s

Silas: who has major cause to be angry at his mother, but at the ending, finally having a child well...surely the resentfulness from being lied to about his father should have mellowed. And it did - only to be taken up by his wife. Who, I'm sorry, was a major B***ch. If your husband can forgive his mother for her craziness and for supposedly ruining your childhood (what childhood exactly? His father Judah, who raised him, died when he was a teenager so it's not like her dealing drugs affected him like it affected Shane who really WAS a child at the beginning) and for lying to him, then your wife needs to get on board with that. That was just freaking annoying. And Silas, for all of his resentfulness ended up forgiving her when they went into a partnership together to sell legalized marijuana at cool cafes. The marijuana that he loves to grow - so really, his mother was the gateway to finding what he loved to do. And somehow, she ruined his childhood with this. This was so uneven - he's angry, then he's not. And I kept wanting to be like "Silas, let your mother hold her granddaughter and tell your wife to stop it. Or at least let her know that she had to be somewhat nice to his mother." I got where they were going - Silas was a grown-up, not beholden to Nancy, a husband and father. But still - after everything, with many chances for Silas to stay somewhere - go to college, stay with his biological father, etc. He always CHOSE to go with his mom. There was a bond there. It was strong. So yeah let's stop talking about how your childhood was supposedly ruined, when you were a teenager when Judah died (or pretty close) and had all of the good stuff as an actual child than Shane did. And maybe get some perspective - Nancy wasn't sure how Judah would TAKE knowing he wasn't biologically related to you - what was she supposed to do, exactly?

Andy: Oh, Andy. All those years being separated from Nancy emotionally....not likely. You two were a team. I get why you had to leave her, physically. But not contact? She knows nothing about your life? There's just no way. The life he made in Renmar after leaving -totally bought that. Owning a restaurant and becoming a dad. Yep. I loved that. But to completely cut her off - I never bought that. It just wasn't true to either of the characters.

So yeah. I didn't want some happy ending, Nancy/Andy wedding to be the finale. But what WAS the finale could have been so much better. Andy would have gone back to Renmar yes and Nancy would be alone to find out what she wants to do. But she'd have her family - which was the whole point. And it just didn't feel that way. It felt like they were abandoning her. Not going off to live their own lives, which I think is what the writers were trying for - but abandoning her. Because somehow, she wasn't worth their love or whatever. It was ridiculous.

So I'm with other reviewers in calling for a movie. Maybe five years later than the finale. For Nancy's wedding. Or Shane's. Or for Stevie's graduation. Something. And Andy and Nancy are best friends again - she's a great aunt to his daughter. Megan isn't so bitter and mean. Shane is doing better (not perfect, but better). It doesn't have to be a perfect present. But really, wrap it up with them being as close as they were, in a screwed up way, to really end the series. Because that's really what it was about - they were all there for each other, absorbing others into their family (like Doug and I'd hope Megan) but always together as the Botwins.

Thursday, January 31, 2013


Let me just give a shout out to my friend Kay for her totally understanding comment on my last post. Incidentally, the book that makes me cry all the time when I read it to Alice is: Where Ever You Are, My Love Will Find You by Nancy Tillman. It's wonderful to know I still have people reading my blog.

Okay, on to the new post.

Some things I find funny about being a mom.

1. I talk about poop a lot more than I ever thought possible - and I even KNEW I would be talking more about it and I STILL find it amazing how often I will start a conversation with my husband like this : "She had two poopy diapers today. One wasn't too bad but the other was really sticky and smelled funnier."
Or (this is my favorite): "No, that isn't poop face. Poop face is more like (*makes similar face as child does*)...

2. Raffi is kind of awesome. I don't even know if Alice LIKES these songs, but I play them anyway and sing Baby Beluga to her. This is VOLUNTARY. She could care less - she'd probably smile and laugh and clap if I were singing to Lady Gaga or Elvis too.

3. One of the highlights of the week is going to the library for Nursery Rhyme Time. Some of this is so I get ideas for when I go back to work and have to come up with story time ideas and things. But most of it is because I get out of the house, and Alice and I have fun together and someone ELSE did all the work to get us to have fun.

4. Going to the bathroom alone is pretty freaking awesome.

5. I totally repeat things other moms say about being a mom (see above). And I don't care. Also - I'm wearing yoga pants for the fifth day in a row and I consider myself to be more stylish than the moms who wear sweat pants. Ha!

Some other things going on in my life.

1. I got to see most of my family. My aunt and uncle came from South Dakota and visited and that was pretty awesome.

2. I'm already starting to plan for our trip to Chicago at the end of June. We'll be going with an 18-month old people, that's why I'm planning stuff now!

3. Despite being always tired, I'm having trouble falling and staying asleep. I think Alice has trained me well. It must be some kind of baby military training for moms.

4. I am very excited for winter to be over, even though we've had a lot of nice days or semi-nice days out. I am ready for the week of spring we'll be having before the heat and drought kicks in for a summer in Kansas.

5. I am still writing my book. Well, actually two of them of wildly different subjects and genres. But I have spurts of great ideas and then nothing. I want to finish one of them by the end of this year. Yeah, good luck with that.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Apparently, It Was Supposed to be Heartwarming.....

Last night, in an effort to up my reading instead of t.v. watching, I finished a Harlequin Superromance. This is my favorite series romance, because the stories are usually really good, I tend to like the characters, and someday I hope to publish something by them. Maybe. If I ever get around to you know, writing anything that isn't a Facebook status or a blog post.

Anyway. I finish the book on my Kindle and I'm already like, "I didn't like the book." I hardly ever say that. But this time, I really didn't like the book. It was the last in a series that portray different characters who have experienced missing children firsthand - a sister, the two detectives working cold cases, etc. This one featured the two detectives who started working together to solve a bunch of cold cases that are somehow linked.

Only, I really didn't care if the two got together. That is technically the whole point of the book. But in this case, it was completely overshadowed by the question of whether they will ever find out what happened to two missing girls: one six months old and one two years old at the time of their disappearances. And how are they linked? So I'm skipping all the blah blah blah romance stuff and going straight to what happens.

And what happens is this: the sister of the detective was either kidnapped and sold through an illegal adoption/baby selling ring or killed when her mother was kidnapped and raped. The other case involved a missing two year old, who apparently disappeared out of thin air. They caught the rapist and the detective (the sister of the six month old, with me so far?) tries to find out what he did with her sister. But he won't talk. And her mother (the rape victim and mother of six month old) doesn't remember because of traumatic amnesia plus blows to the head.

Blah, blah, blah. Story happens. Is romance brewing? Yes. Blah, blah, blah blah. Oh, and what happened to that two year old that disappeared from her front yard and how is she connected to this other baby?

They find out what happened. The baby was taken with the mother, probably under threat "Come with me or I'll kill your baby." Of course, baby is scared and hungry and crying. So while the mother is HOLDING her against her chest, trying to protect her and comfort her, the rapist bashes her head in with a rock and then rapes the mother and beats her up. She can't remember what happens to the baby and it leads her to alcohol but she somehow manages to raise her other daughter (the detective) who is hell bent of getting closure and finding out what happened to the baby.

Flash to the two year old that went missing. Apparently, it's the detective all along, who was kidnapped by the alcoholic and disturbed (not that any one can blame her) mother of the murdered six month old. So she's been trying to solve her own kidnapping case - which would have been awesome, except for the murdered six month old.

And I DIDN'T CARE! She met her biological family and got married to the guy (the other detective) and it's such a HAPPY ENDING. Except it isn't. Because the six month old got murdered and the mother is now locked up in a psych ward (although that's where she needed to be all along).

And I finish the book and then cry for like ten minutes, because I have a one year old and remember what she was like at 6 months vividly and if someone had kidnapped us and then killed her in front of me, while I was trying to comfort and protect her. Well, I'd just go ahead and kill myself, none of this becoming an alcoholic or abusing drugs. And I tell Nick the story and he's all - you have to stop reading about this stuff. And I'm trying to explain that it's supposed to be a fun, happy romance.

And then I eat about six chocolate chip cookies and don't even care when my one year old wakes me up all night long.

So yeah, Harlequin - that supposed romance. It sucked. I couldn't get past the other storyline, which overwhelmed the romance part and basically ruined the book. You couldn't have maybe told the author NOT to kill off the baby? To let her be alive somewhere in some kind of totally against the odds story? Because I can't handle this kind of thing anymore. And it's STILL on my mind. And now, I have take some kind of "learn how to kick ass" class so that if anyone ever comes near me, I can totally take off his head with my bare hands.

The End.

Sunday, January 06, 2013

Random Act of Kindness

I posted this on Facebook, but I had to write a post about it as well. This morning, after a rather late night, my husband and I got up and got Alice ready to go to breakfast with my two oldest, bestest friends and their families. We were both tired and excited to see everyone and exchange Christmas gifts for the kiddos and visit a little, since we are all rarely together.

Anyway, we order and are talking and passing around the presents and our food get to the table. One of my friends hadn't got her breakfast and paused the waitress to ask whether it was ready. The waitress apologized and said, "I am so sorry. I didn't see it. Someone paid your ticket already and blah...blah...blah."

And we were all, "Wait...What?! Someone paid their ticket?"

"No. I mean, someone paid all of your tickets." And I think we all just stared at each other.

Some very nice person (or people) had decided to do a random act of kindness and paid for all of our breakfasts, including the tip. It was such an amazing thing to happen fairly early on a Sunday morning and we were all talking about how we'd heard and read stories about it, but it had never happened to us, etc. And how we are all going to try and do our own act of kindness and how much fun it would be.

So, even though I doubt the person or people read this blog: Thank you stranger for paying for our breakfasts and making our day brighter. We look forward to doing the same to someone else.

And readers: I hope you can do a random act of kindness too: it doesn't have to be anything big.