Life Lately

Greta is 21 months-old. She continues to light up my life countless times a day. She's got a sense of humor, and loves to love, and she loves telling us that the dog goes, "woof," and showing us where her nose and other body parts are located. She's obsessed with reading books. And she enjoys being outside, and she's infatuated with the older neighborhood children. She thinks she's one of the big girls, and maybe she IS almost two years old, but in my heart, and in my mind, she is still my baby. I'm slowly working on accepting the reality that she's becoming a little girl.

I'm 20 weeks pregnant with a little boy. I've recently started to feel him move, making the pregnancy a little more real although still not completely. I'm still in shock, and I'm not kidding you -- I still have the first pregnancy test sitting on the shelf above my toliet. Don't worry -- I WILL NOT scrapbook it. I just can't bring myself to throw it away right now, because I still am shocked that I'm pregnant. This baby is so very wanted but the pregnancy was a surprise, and I don't think it will be completely real until I'm holding a little baby boy in my arms. Wow.

This pregnancy is much like my pregnancy with Greta. In fact, they're just a few weeks apart from the other, so all my maternity clothes are the same season and I'm able to compare my stats (weight gain, etc.) easily to those from a couple years ago. So far, I've gained two pounds, and my blood pressure has remained controlled. This does not calm me, however, from the reality that it could still go bad. At this point in my pregnancy with Greta, my blood pressure was still fine.

I'm nervous about another premature baby but not to the point that I obsess about it. I religiously take my medicine, and I'm trying to eat well, rest often and exercise a bit, too. I'm doing  what I can. I think I'm more anxious about having two children, just two years apart from one another, than I am about the imminent birth little baby boy. Holy shit.

I'm nesting a lot, I guess. Organizing closets, purging clothes and anything not used in the past two years. I've been spending a lot of time and energy emptying my scrapbook room to make way for the nursery. I've been a little over-focused on this nesting deal, I think -- I've got friends calling me to see if I'm okay, if I'm still alive, and yes, I am. I'm just a little hard-core with things right now. It's driven by my fear of another forced bedrest and not being able to complete things. I wasn't ready preparing Greta's room, clothing, car seat, etc., and while I know she and we survived just fine, I just feel better getting my ducks in a row.

In addition to nesting, I sleep a lot. Or I try to. I sleep like crap at night, often waking at random hours (2:30 a.m. or so) wide awake. I get up every two hours to pee, and then I can't help but focus on my husband snoring loudly next to me. Since my sleep is so uninterrupted, I usually wake up feeling cranky and unrested and often spend my days counting down the hours until naptime. When Greta naps, I nap, too. It's my favorite time of the day.

I'm Over It

It's official. I quit. I'm talking about the Project 365 dealio that I've been dreading for the past 100+ days. I don't like it. The idea was to capture our life in photos for a year, but instead, it leaves me feeling stressed, in a constant state of un-caught-up. I don't like that feeling.

I just got off the phone with Cara, and while she was complaining about legitimate issues (a crying baby up at 9 p.m. on a Saturday night and another baby up for reasons unknown), I instead whined about this project. And maybe she just wanted to me to shut the heck up already and quit whining, so maybe this was why her response was so quick... AND SO BRILLIANT. But as I was telling her I wasn't having fun with it, she answered, "So don't do it."

That simple. Freakin' God love her. And her simple advice.

So, here's my thing. Even though my photos are date-stamped, it's still a pain in the butt to go back and organize all the photos chronologically. Now, if I kept up with the project and downloaded a photo each day, perhaps I wouldn't have this problem, but that just isn't happening. I'm lucky to get online to check e-mails these days. Hooking up my camera to download photos seems so often daunting.

The other thing that I do not like about this project is that I've stopped writing much. My forte has never been photography, and although one of my reasons for challenging myself to take on the picture-a-day project was to better my photography skills, I don't want that to be at the expense of my writing. I like to write. It's always been a passion of mine, and I'd rather have my words to tell our story than photos. My new motto is that it's about quality and not quantity.


My 99th Photo of 2010!

This is my sisterwife, Cara.
We're not gay lovers, but we joke
that if our husbands ever died,
we'd move in together and get along just perfectly.

Cara is one of those friends who I love with all my heart.
I'd never tell her that though.
I don't want her to think she's that cool.
But, dude. She IS.

She's that friend I wish I'd had all my life
-- the friend I needed all my life --
but I didn't meet her until
we were planning our weddings six years ago.
I was her makeup artist for her wedding.
And it just goes to show you
that friendships happen so randomly
when and where you'd least expect it.

This is the woman who walked me through
the first few months of motherhood.
I'd call her and tell her that my milk was drying up,
that my boobs were broken and I was starving my baby. 
And this Milk Mama Pro would assure me that it wasn't
and that I needed to CHILL THE EFF OUT.
(Those weren't her words. She rarely cusses).
Her advice on
and dealing with life
has been priceless.

Seriously, my advice to new moms?
One who will listen to you bitch and understands you
and knows you're quirky and somewhat odd
but celebrates,relishes it and is fine with it.
(Or at least does an amazing job pretending to.)
Find a friend you can call at any time and ask
why your boobs are doing this,
and why your bum feels like that,
and is it normal to smell funny when you're....

She lays it on the line
talks me back from the ledge
puts me in my place.
She's like a tall cup of cold ice water, served in a funky glass
with a side dose of Xanax.

One word for Cara is
And I don't know how she does it.
I've got one chlid.
(3, 2 and 3 months. I'm not kidding.)
She always seems to have her shit together.
Without fail.

She recently brought home her newest addition, Violet.
I got to hold Violet for the first time today.
She's lucky I did not steal her and take her home with me.
I could have touched her sweet cheeks ALL DAY LONG.

At the end of the year, when I'm looking back
at this project of "365 Photos"
Violet will be a year old, and along with her sisters
getting into everything.
And I'll have a baby boy
and we'll come full circle once again
to me calling Cara with all my annoying new-mom questions.
Cara, I'm just warning you now...



Daddy was out for the night
playing poker.
Mama was too exhausted
to follow the rules.
Hence, the little naked rugrat
running around the house
with a huge ripe strawberry in her hand.


@ Purina Farms, watching the dog show.
And this is how she rolls.
Sucker in her mouth.
Jean dress.
Chuck Taylors.
Foot in the air.
Such a lady.



33/365 - 02.02.2010

97/365 - 04.07.10

Destroying the chocolate bunny...
Surely, we thought she'd go straight for the ears.
Instead, she bit right into his bum.

The Evolution of Easter Bunny Love

A few weeks ago,
we went to The Oakland House's Bunny Hutch,
where Greta visited with the Easter Bunny
for the first time this season, the second time in her life.
She was not a fan.

The following week, we went to Purina Farms.
She liked this bunny,
especially his colorful bow.
I think he's got a sweeter face, too!
Bunny love is ALL in how the bunny's face looks.
No one likes a creepy bunny.

Then on Easter, my sister's boyfriend
dressed up as the Easter Bunny.
Greta liked him.

He tickled her
and made her laugh.

They gave each other high-fives like old pals.

And she even gave him a few kisses.

99/365 | 04-09-2010

That's how you win my heart.
(In case you wanted to know.)

In life, there are people who will never get you.
There are people who will try.
There will be those that don't dare to try.
And there are those that just do.
They get you.
And they like you.

This is one lesson I dread to teach my children.
Really, it's something that can't be taught.
That's why I dread it;
it's learned along the way.
Trial and error.
It sucks, but it's a fact of life.

The thing is...
even though the people that get you are rare,
they're such a complete blessing
whom you appreciate more
because they make the "ungetters" forgiveable.

And they win your heart
by the most simple act.
Those people are the tulip-givers.

98/365 -04.08.10

The closer she gets to 2 years old,
the more tantrums she throws.
But along with those tantrums,
comes a personality
that just gets bigger each day.
She loves to be silly.
And she loves to make me laugh.
(Well, when she feels like it.)
Here, she was doing what looked like push-ups.
Lord knows she wasn't imitating me.

Good Afternoon!

This lovely bumpkin... took a nice long three-hour nap this afternoon, and when I went to go get her from her crib, THIS is what I was greeted with. That smile lights up my life and makes everyday life frustrations momentarily escape.

We're growing out her hair. At times the process is dreadful, like when she refuses to wear a hair bow or barrette to keep the shag out of eyes, and then she looks like a raggedy orphan. Other times, I absolutely love it, especially when she wakes up from a nap where she's slept so deep that she's gotten warm enough to make her hair do a slight flippy curl. I love the little wisps on the one side of her head.

Mmmmm, I find her absolutely delectable and scrumptious in moments like these, but I am struck by a wee bit of sadness that my baby girl is no longer a baby and is ... a toddler.



Good Friday
Life is good.
How can it not be with smiles like this!?

96/365 - 04.06.2010

This weather of recent has been incredible.
Sunny days filled with warm air and nice breezes
make me in love with Mother Nature,
and I'm considering forgiving her for the shitty winter we had.
But alas, without rain, we'd never appreciate the sun.

Greta's loved getting outdoors to play and soak up the spring goodness.
She enjoys checking out the older neighborhood chidren
as they ride their bikes and little vehicles.
She's no longer a huge fan of the stroller.
She wants to ride her car by HERSELF.
And she'd much rather push the wagon herself than be a passenger.
Hmmm, I wonder where she gets it from --
the constant want to be in charge and in control?



How sweet is this?!
A fun morning @ The Oakland House:
story time, puppet show, live rabbit, Easter bunny and candy.
I love the little grin on Greta's face,
and I love the smiling old lady, too.


I'm really kinda ashamed to post this photo.
(Or maybe I should be more embarassed
for even TAKING this photo!?!)
So, the idea of this little 365 project is to tell my story
over the course of a year by taking a photo each day.
Most photos are of Greta.
I cannot help that; I'm with her all day,
and she is my favorite thing to photograph, I must admit.
However, on this day, I thought I'd switch it up a bit
by posting this photo of the McDonald's drive-thru menu.
Sure, I have multiple photos of a smiling-Greta swinging at the park,
and those are so much sweeter and more inviting.
But, this photo sums up my life recently.
At 17 weeks pregnant, I don't have a huge appetite.
We can have a well-stocked fridge and pantry,
and I can't find a single thing that sounds good enough to eat.
What does sound good?
McDonald's McGriddle sandwiches.
Sausage, egg and cheese, to be exact.
The crap is scrumptiously delicious.
(And, that's what it is, CRAP. I know.)
My friend swears that McDonald's laces its food with crack
or something.
Everything there is addicting and tastes good.
At least to my unrefined pregnant palate.
I'm incredibly embarassed to admit that I'm proud to say
I've not eaten there yet this week.
(That's huge).


Caught red-handed
after snatching my makeup bag
after a morning bath.


THIS is what we are greeted by each morning.
Payton, our 6 year-old Lab, who insists on sleeping
under OUR bed IN her bed.
It's like a cocoon.
And she only comes out once she hears
the beeping from us disarming the house alarm system.
She's lazy and loves to sleep.
She eats well and is loved much and often.
She's quite the pampered pooch.

I always say,
in my next life, if I had the choice,
I'd like to come back as my dog.


Miss Greta, checking out her Easter basket on Easter morning.
Mr. Bunny brought books, candy, egg-shaped chalk,
a new monogrammed Easter basket, and a few random toys.
Happy Easter!


Flowers from my honey.
He worked later than usual,
so he brought me these.
He is a keeper!