Thursday, March 25, 2010

Creative Wedding Inspiration

The wedding season is upon us and it is definitely around our house!
As the Hus preps for a busy summer photographing couples gettin' hitched
I can't help but think of all the beautiful locations he'll be shooting & the fun things he'll see!

Needless to say, I got a little inspired when I found two new-to-me Etsy Shops.
How cute would the initial pin be as a boutonniere instead of flowers?!
Images 3 & 5 are alternatives to ring bearer pillows!
1-3: April Hiler Designs 4: A{touch of}Love 5: Wise Impressions

Happy Weekend, Friends!
I'll be knee deep in my junk that could become someone else's treasure
(SPRING CLEANING Garage Sale time!)
Woop, woop!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Roses are Red, Violets are Blue...

...Roseola is not fun but I'm rooting for Red & Blue

Let me explain....

The midge is just finally recovering from Roseola.
After 4 days of a high temperature, it broke and then came the rash.
I'm just relieved to have an answer and to know it's almost over!
In other silly news...
my College basketball team is heading on to the Sweet 16.
Go, Saint Mary's!!
So while my fellow alumni will gather at ATT Park in San Francisco on Friday to root for our team with a fabulously funny event called
I'll be cheering from my driveway as I organize a garage sale and await my Twitter Updates!
{I have never been as obsessed with March Madness as I am this year...just ask my friend, Shannon...}

Sunday, March 21, 2010

104 & Icky

Last night was one of those long parenting nights.
Again, the Midge was sick.I'm actually embarrassed to even say this because I feel like it's ALL I say.
I feel like someone is going to accuse me of Munchausen syndrome but I swear. It's not the case!
On Friday night, the little one came down with a fever.
I was sad, shocked, frustrated.
{HOW does he have a fever? He's on his last few days of Amoxicillin!}
But there we were, with our boy in our bed fighting a fever.
By Saturday, we couldn't get it below 100.
As he was once again in our bed at 104 degrees this time
I just stared at him.My husband laid hands on our baby and prayed and then he said the EXACT thing I was thinking as I looked helplessly at his bare and diapered body,
"We have a lifetime ahead of us with nights like this."
And I ached.
We do.
I quietly looked at him and spoke,
"In all of our preparing, we never prepared for nights like this."And it's true.
As parents we have prepared for a future of schooling.
We have prepared for growth spurts by purchasing clothes.
We have prepared for his financial freedom by building a savings account for him.
We prepare for his greatness...
and we just tackle the moments of folly.
In my head I feel ridiculous.
The ER again?
Yes. Because an ice bath wasn't cooling him.
A $32 phone call to speak with a nurse through our after hours pediatrician line and we had no direction as to WHAT.TO.DO.NEXT.
Tylenol wasn't reducing anything.
And then he started vomiting.
Then I was done.
5:24 am and I couldn't do it anymore.Here's something I willingly admit-
when it comes to my son and moments of panic I do NOT stay calm or rational.
My husband ends up having to sternly talk me into submission--
snap me out of crying or frantic verbal urgency.
How do I reign this in?
How do I STOP freaking out or reacting?

This has been a long weekend.
And tonight I get to call in to find out if I've been called in for Jury Duty.
I'm wiped out but hanging in just fine.
Wouldn't mind a subtle five second "WHY MEEEE" dramatic cry on the front lawn
but I'm totally fine.
Just kinda worn out and not sure how I'd ever do this with more than one midglet.

{All Images by Sadie Olive}

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Hello Spring!

This week we had a back yard, on the grass, whip out a blanket picnic for dinner.
{We even busted out the quality wine ;}
With as beautiful as the evenings have been, I couldn't pass up the opportunity!
And while it looks relaxing and calm....
What you don't see here is:
Our cat who ended up eating the Midge's quesadilla
The wine that spilled all over the blanket
The pasta that didn't cook all the way through and ended up quite cold.
Vegetables on our plate ("because we at them all" is not the reason)

But at the heart of it was great intention.
The intention to pour love on my boys.
The intention to break routine.
Sure, wine glasses & place mats & cloth napkins were a little excessive
and yes, a little more work
but I think that part was for me
{Yes, it was.}
And at the end of it, we got to say
and my heart was full just imagining all the playing we'd be doing this year
in our very own back yard.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


Today was one of those days.
The kind that just FEELS all consuming and overwhelming.
Today though, I put on my gloves and punched my heavy heart right in the face.
I cured it with a little special something.I picked up my Midge from school and decided TODAY we would go on a date.
I would deem today our first official date.
The kind where we get an ice cream sundae
(or a frozen yogurt)
and share it with two spoons.
That kind of date.
And it was perfect.
I mean, PERFECT.
He said "mmmm"
I smiled
We got messy
I recentered-refocused-recharged.
It was worth the $4.45...SO worth it!
As we got in the car and drove away I took a moment to just tell him
"Mommy is going to be different! Mommy is going to think about what really matters MORE!
Mommy is going to start caring about what makes you and Daddy and me happy and stop worrying so much about everyone else. I promise buddy. I'm gonna try!"
And somehow, speaking those words out loud to my little boy
hearing me confess this struggle
{and eating ice cream}
seemed to make it better for today.
Come what may but chocolate & some love saved my heart today.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Craftastic Frousins

This past weekend I was able to be with my frousin (my cousin who is also my friend).
You probably know her. She's sorta fabulous!
After she redid her craft room I begged, pleaded, sobbed until she gave in and let me come soak up space in her beautiful Pasadena home!

We ate. We sipped wine. We shopped. We partied (2 year old style). We crafted our guts out!
I mean we're talking up til' midnight, grab the munchies, stay in the jammies, cut, glue whatever is around you crafting.
I felt like a little girl on Christmas Eve sleeping amidst ribbons and a sewing machine and buckets and bins of inspiration!

Our craftastic weekend ended with one of my favorite parts- the Rose Bowl Flea Market.
A couple skinny vanilla latte's and 1 special friend later, we were off together like three little besties in a suburban aching to be filled with sought out treasures!
So, yah, I finally got to hug Tara in REAL life!

While we send each other email hugs throughout the months, a real one is SO much better.
You know what's amazing about my bloggy friends?!
The fact that "meeting" them isn't weird.
There's the anxiety of, "Wait. What if I'm a nerd in real life and they only like me in my blog?!"
(it's possible)
it ends up like sitting with someone who knows your heart -- cuz they do!
Tara knows my heart and I feel like I know hers.
So I didn't meet Tara for the first time this weekend, I simply hugged her for the first time!
Let me tell you, she's the sweetest.
If only I could have stayed longer with my frousin and frog (hm, no real combo for a blog friend....)
These girls would be THE.BEST to slumber party with!
Perhaps in June....

Thank you Tracy for being the amazing hostess you ALWAYS are!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Love is ALL You Need

{Remember how I mentioned my hus was out of town? The midge ended up coming down with bronchitis & I've been out of work + home without internet. I've been writing in the wee hours as I wake to care for my lil' one. Here's what I would have posted on Monday night.}

This morning started as a mothering disaster. Perhaps disaster is too strong a word but you couldn’t tell my heart that I was being irrational.

Mothering, parenting, selflessness--none of that has come easily to me. I didn’t find pregnancy to be this beautiful process and the miracle of life. I found it daunting, all consuming, and discouraging. While I believed having the excuse to “get fat” would be nice, finding my face reflection most often in the porcelain that was my various apartment toilets was not. While some people choose pregnancy, I was surprised by it. I of course know how it happened, I was just not sure why.

During the first year of my son’s life, I was in a war that I will always remember. I battled this ideal scenario I had in my head, but the problem was, the scenario constantly varied. One day, my ideal could be being a stay at home mom and the next I was glad I worked. I spent the first 365 days of motherhood in an infinite state of self division and I hated how I felt in it.

It was never about my son. My son has always been amazing. It has always been about ME. I look at some women in my life who have raised their children and are now in their next phase of life and I fear becoming them. For these reasons, and so many other deep rooted ones, I am determined to both love my son obsessively and release him willingly. I am determined to raise my son but maintain who I am. I am determined to nourish my son’s make-up with encouragement but return to my marriage and it’s freedom when he is grown. This seems to be task that requires daunting amounts of balance and relatively constant confusion.

Today, I dropped my son off at day care and as I listened to another little girl his age speak so clearly to her Mom, my heart broke as I rendered myself incapable of raising an advanced, intelligent, capable child. I walked away feeling--less than, parentally impotent, & crushed in my spirit of mothering. I asked myself, what have I done wrong? And the comparison game began: he doesn’t eat like so and so, he doesn’t know how to work an iphone like so and so, he doesn’t speak like so and so.

Tonight, I came home from work to a little boy who ran at me with open arms. He grabbed my hand and told me to “deh-dow” (get down). He put his little hands on my face and kissed me on the lips and just looked in my eyes and then began to giggle. And then I stopped. I stopped questioning if I was good enough. I stopped wondering if I let him watch too many movies. I stopped telling myself that I have done him wrong. I knew above all else that I can teach him, he needs to know that he is loved and my little boys KNOWS he is loved.

In the past several weeks my bond with my baby boy has changed infinitely. I know the reasons why. I know that every moment I learn to balance both setting myself aside and making room for who I am, that my baby boy receives the best of me. I know that I make mistakes that cause me to constantly evaluate how I can be a better mom. I know that while once I could handle the “cry it out” method there is something deep seeded in me that chooses to have him kick me off of my side of the bed just so I can hold him a little longer. One day I will have to let go, but that day is not today.

While today started like a dagger through the chest (and I mean that quite literally) it has ended by proving, not to be trite, that Love is, in fact, all you need.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Man Munch

Happy Monday, Friendlies!
I have to say--I am a wee bit frantic today.
I have been a single parent for 24 hours now.
My hottie hus left for a big photography conference in Vegas with some of his local photographer buddies until tomorrow evening!

I have been e.x.t.r.e.m.e.l.y nervous about being alone with my midge and working and getting him to school and picking him up and feeding him and functioning...
I depend on my husband so much. He's my teammate!
Anyway, to refocus some of my pent up anxiety, I made him and his buddies some snack bags.
Excessively sweet snack bags actually.
And to make them sound more manly they're actually called Man Munch bags ;)
Did you do anything craftalicious this weekend?

{Man Munch Supplies}
Paper Lunch Bags from the Dollar Tree
Green Bar Code Tape from Michael's Dollar Bins
Snacks from Trader Joe's
Raffle tickets from Etsy & hand stamped at home, tied on with some baker's twine

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Marriage vs. Motherhood

{a look back in time}
I stumbled across a blog the other day that has had me thinking ever since. The entry was centered around the question, "Is being a wife or a mother harder?" The writer expressed her opinion that marriage was harder. She exposed her truth and it saddened me as she expressed that marriage is something she feels she can walk away from while children are not a being that you can divorce.

I have been reeling in the brief moments of silence I have over her answer and over what my answer would be. My answer goes something like this...

Marriage is work. There are days that it is easier to wear than others. Marriage can feel like the confidence of wearing a new shirt or it can resemble a freshly washed pair of jeans that one can't squeeze themselves into some days. On the "tight jeans" days thought it just means I have to work a little bit harder--I have to stretch the pants out until they loosen little, make them fit the way they did before putting them through the washer. At the end of the day though, when I've put in the work to wear them in again though, they feel good, comfortable, and irreplaceable. In the grand scheme of things, a good
pair of jeans is just as good as a brand new shirt.

I realize I am comparing the most sacred union between man and woman to clothes but I can't quite find another way to say what I am feeling. If marriage were easy, we wouldn't see so much failure. If
marriage were easy, counselors would be out of jobs. If marriage were easy, making light of the disagreement the night before with your friends wouldn't be as funny.

For me- marriage is easier than motherhood if we're creating the notion that these two roles are jobs. I ultimately chose to be married. My husband dropped down to one knee and held out a diamond ring and asked me, "Will you marry me?" and I said "Yes." I said yes to the days we'd look at each other with the eyes of new lovers and to the days where we'd wonder if our emotional bank account would make it. I say yes to him and to us every single day. In marriage, I have a partner and a friend who tackles the have-to's with me. I have a friend who knows me better than I do. I have a friend who holds my hand when we are walking freely from worldly stresses and when the going gets tough. In marriage I have a true love and an eternal friend.

In motherhood, I have a being who is in constant need of me. Sometimes the sheer weight of motherhood feels like it could
break me. The voices of women who have all of the answers, the lives of women who have different arrangements, the pressures to prepare and to be everything at every moment. I can hold my son and be both in awe and exhaustion simultaneously. If anything, motherhood makes marriage harder. Now I have two people who need me with one significant difference: one is independent the other is entirely dependent. Mothering within marriage calls for an extra cup of alertness--to be alert enough that I don't put my child above my husband for according to what I believe, it is God first, Husband second, and Son third (however, that priority list often gets skewed.) It's easy though to forget the independent person in my life and focus on the dependent one who cries or giggles with all that he is at any given moment.

In the end, I realize that any one could look at me and tell me what I'm doing wrong or how I need to be more grateful but what they don't know is how grateful I am. I am grateful beyond words for the life I have, for all that I have been given and do not deserve. In my humanity, however, I struggle. I struggle with who I am, who I am not, and who I want to be. Motherhood and marriage are amazing blessings, and like anything in life, they have their trying moments.

Monday, March 1, 2010

a prayer...

About four years ago our old church released a worship CD with songs my friends (the worship team) had written. I found that CD the other day and it's been playing in my car on my drives.

Today, one of the songs written by my friend Katy came on and it had a whole new meaning.
It felt like the Holy Spirit had reached in my heart and pulled out exactly what I was trying to pray but couldn't put into words.The song put me in line with Him, and with the song on repeat, I let it be my prayer.
I let it be what I couldn't find the words to say, I let it be my plea and my reminder that He is always with me.

These lyrics are a reminder that when I am desperate to come to Him and hear Him, he will find a way into my heart, renew me with love, and restore my strength regardless of how closed to understanding my heart can feel.

You are the friend that I need and the Father who holds me.
You love me just as I am and the way You'll make me to be.
And when I, I fall apart still it's You who holds my heart.

Here I am before you now and
I cry out for more of You
I am broken and you are Healer
and I cry out for more of You.

You are the rock that I stand on and all I'll ever need
I'm lost you call out my name and come and rescue me.
And when I fall apart sill its You who holds my heart.

And it's Your love that brings me new life
And it's Your love that I see in your eyes
And Your love is how I survive.

Here I am before you now
And I cry out for more of you.
I am so broken but you are Healer and I cry out for more of You.