Monday, May 30, 2011

It may be time to go shopping...

Buying myself new clothes is always pretty low on my financial priority list, and doubly so when I'm not exactly shopping for a number that makes me feel "MILFish" (totally coining a new word). On top of all that, I'm still trying to figure out how to dress cute but still be age appropriate. I DO NOT want to be that grandma wearing the "JUICY" sweatsuit. So all that to say, I have a limited number of cute outfits.

Today we had a birthday party to go to with some of the kids from daycare. Those moms are cute. They all work out, "They run and it shows..." (name that quote), their clothes are cute, and I've never seen one with snot "oh no, that's banana!" on their shoulder. So I wore one of my cute outfits. Skinny jeans that are too long, so I roll them to capri length. A drop-waist shirt that hides the pooch but shows the girls. Funky gladiator type sandals. So imagine my joy when, while at Target for the last-minute gift bag run, a woman stops me to tell me how cute I look. *Grin* + Sisterhood = Happy me. Then she tells me "I have that exact same blouse! I love it!" Yep. She said "blouse." Because she was 85. So that's a fail on "MILFish" and a fail on age appropriateness. Though I looked pretty cute for a geriatric.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

These two

One of the coolest things these days is seeing Eli and Sydney playing together. It's an unexpected perk of having two kids, and seeing them together makes my heart swell.
Walking together
Negotiating potholes

Giant fish
Birthday kisses
First step, ever!

Thursday, May 26, 2011


I'm sitting here feeling a bit homesick, which as I thought about it got a little muddier. Where exactly was I sick for?

Colorado? I was born and raised in the mountains, and there are moments when we go back that I feel so completely and utterly at ease that I'm tempted to pack us up and build a yurt in the middle of nowhere. The mountains, the sky, deer and cougars and bears and skunks...The near-perfect weather. I miss snow and 300+ days of sunshine. I miss skiing and hiking ten minutes from home. I miss "Colorado time" where "7:00" meant anywhere between 6:30 and 8:00. I miss seeing more pick-ups than minivans and knowing that every truck was a 4WD. I miss family.

Portland? I was meant to live in Portland. I want to put a bird on everything I own. In Portland I walked down the street like I owned the place. The best way I can describe it is that I knew how to be in Portland. I felt like we fit in, I knew where to find my village. I love the art, the weirdness, the family that we created and imported in Oregon. I miss the shared misery in March at yet another rainy day and the joy that fills the air when the sun breaks through. I miss the expectation that you recycle, reuse, and "reduce your footprint." I miss restaurants that advertise gluten-free, octo-vegan, pescatarian, locavore... I miss coffee shops and people watching and public transportation.

Minnesota? I miss our friends. I miss the down-home, basic values. I miss the expectation that of course you are a mom. I miss the malls (weird as that sounds). I miss cheese curds and state fairs and ren faires. I miss Minnesota Nice, Viking nation, and the feeling of accomplishment after you survive another sub-zero day.

We are home. We intend to be here awhile, and it's really starting to grow on me, but I'm having a hard time finding the little things I would miss. I've tried talking to people who've lived here awhile, but I'm not even sure I know what I'm looking for. There's a huge market that I like, and I love that we're so close to amazing forests and beautiful coast towns, but I haven't really found my niche here. I know it's somewhere, but for the life of me it continues to be elusive. I don't want to sound pouty, but rather I'm just noticing what an unusual feeling it is to not feel like I'm "clicking" here. It'll happen. I'm sure of it. I just can't picture where or what it'll be. And I can't really figure out what's missing. Our friends are awesome, the school is great, I love my job and C is working on getting into school. But I don't have a place where I have that settled feeling, a place I want to go to every weekend. A place that calls me when I start to feel disconnected. A place where I feel like I get it. Though I have this, and this works too. I guess these crazy people will have to do.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Sleep schedules

7:00 Me: "Eli! Fifteen minutes before bed!"

7:15 Me: Totally distracted by something shiny or colorful

7:45 Me: "Eli! Ten minutes!"

8:00 Reading Eli's story

8:02 Tuck Eli in

8:05 Send Eli back to bed

8:11 Send Eli back to bed

8:12 C is asleep on the couch

8:15, 8:17, 8:26 Send Eli back to bed

8:35 I and a strangely wired Syd clean out the car and install the FORWARD FACING carseat (OMG MY BABY MY BABY!). At some point C gets in bed with Eli

9:20 Rock Syd to sleep

9:35 Got distracted by God-knows what on TV. Put Syd down in her crib.

9:36 Come back from the bathroom to find Syd in bed with C.

9:37 Give up. Facebook.

10:35 Go to bed

2:25 Wake up to Eli confessing that he had an accident

2:27 Realize he meant, in your bed

2:28 Discover that you are soaking wet, and there's a spot on the bed bigger than he is

2:40 After changing you both and warning C about Lake Pissedonivus, climb into Eli's bed.

2:50 Try unsuccessfully to convince Eli this isn't a "Super Awesome Slumber Party and for the love of God please go back to sleep."

3:12 C wakes me up to tell me Syd is "looking for me." Take both kids back to the big bed. C settles into the guest bed.

3:15 Debate whether you can sleep with Syd banging on your face. Decide to try.

5:00 Alarm goes off. Get C, to play human bedrail, and get ready for work. Calculate that you've already been up for eleventy million hours.

6:00 Coffee

6:30 Coffee

7:00 Coffee

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Birthday. Part 2.

Though Syd's birthday was on Tuesday, we threw a little party for her today. I am of the opinion that the first birthday is more for the parents, so it was mostly adults drinking beer (and jello shots) and appreciating Syd's over-the-top adorableness. The kids who did come were equally adorable, so the entire day was sugary sweet.

She held court in her highchair for nearly the entire party. While up there, she ate almost this entire bowl of watermelon slices. Plus 4 cupcakes.
Crazy monkeys indeed.

I had a brief moment of freak out about how much time and money we put into this party, but we're only doing parties for the kids "milestone" birthdays (1st, 5th, 10th, etc.), so it all evens out. I'll admit, it was a bit over-the-top. I channeled Martha and made homemade garlands (to be featured soon). The cupcakes were from a box but had the icing piped on. No smearing for my little girl! And thanks to my totally irrational fear of running out, we ended up with a fridge full of food, a lot of extra beer, and a living room full of balloons. Afterwards it felt like the time flew and I regretted not having more time to spend with each person, who I realized have become our village here. There were lots of different people, all mixed together, blowing bubbles and attempting to hula hoop. It was a perfect celebration of our little girl, our family, and our new life here.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Birthday Girl

She has a party for this weekend, but I took her to get a celebratory cupcake today. Which she inhaled. And then ate the wrapper too. Her teachers wrote her a very sweet card that reinforced my nearly unrestrainable love for her daycare. And C and I have a date tonight for our anniversary. What a wonderful day!

On this day in history

1875: The first Kentucky Derby is run.

1954: Brown v. Board of Education ends racial segregation in schools

2000: The final episode of Beverly Hills 90210 airs

2003: This happened

2010: Then this happened

May 17th. The best day of my life twice over (though I still miss 90210). To C, whose stubbornness and tenacity is admirable and who loves his family fiercely and to Sydney, who is becoming a very mischievous little girl with a beaming smile, infectious laugh, and a demanding scream.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


It turned out to be a great Saturday. I took the kids and a friend to the Pirate Festival, and it was much cooler than I expected.

We didn't commit to full costumes, but like I told C, our outfits were "pirate inspired." Eli rocked his ninja costume, Syd wore matey stripes (and barrettes OMG so cute) and I phoned it in with a billowy white t-shirt and clam digger jeans. Next year we're totally dressing up. Eli was nervous about all the "real pirates" at first (of course he was) but he warmed up to them eventually
Not sure what kind of pirates these are

This was on a real pirate ship. He told me all about the gun and I pretended to know what he was talking about. Take away? The gun was a BIG DEAL. Also, the ship had a little room in the bow that he let kids go in one at a time, which Eli thought was awesome. I thought it was a terrible idea. But I wasn't consulted (also a terrible idea). Luckily "The Captain" turned out to be a seven-year-old. Eli said he was allowed to ask any question he wanted so he asked the captain if he could show him his ninja costume.
He love love loved the archery. He hit this knee pose all on his own.
There may be hay bales in our future.
Syd's favorite part was the cannon show. She clapped and screamed after every "BOOM."
The actors loved her.

At home Syd and I fell asleep in the rocking chair. I must not take naps very often, because Eli woke me up about twenty minutes later because he thought I was dead.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mother's Day

There wasn't any breakfast in bed. No sentimental jewelry or even handmade gifts (though I did get some amazing cards). But I spent the whole day with these two, and it was perfect. This being a mom thing is pretty awesome.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


Dude. A whole week? It's not that things haven't been happening. It's just that they haven't really merited their own post. Life is good, work is good, everything's good. There's been massive drama at work because apparently we're doing our job "too well." It's the right kind of problem to have, in my opinion. I sort of fell off of the gym wagon, but jumped on the dairy-free (except for frozen yogurt) wagon. The kids are crazy, as usual, but in the best way. I'm planning Syd's party and simultaneously freaking out about "MY BAAAABY!!!" which of course leads to the "three? We could totally handle three!" thoughts. Moving on...

Eli had his first "ER possible" injury in a really long time this weekend. Turns out those are a lot more complicated with two kids. I stood there for a second unsure of who to pick up first. Sydney, who if left unattended had a high likelihood of sampling garden chemicals or Eli, who was screaming and bleeding? It turned into sort of a hot-lava game, picking up each one and moving them about 5 feet at a time. I would've carried both, but my kids are a lot bigger than they look. He's fine now, and we didn't go to the ER. The advice nurse I called several hours later said "It sounds like it'll be fine, as long as you don't mind that he's a little disfigured." It's just his toe, so we saved a trip. MOTY.

The kids and I took a quickie trip to the coast this weekend. Some days I feel like I should feel guiltier about working, but I think one of the upsides is that I'm forced to make the most of the days we spend together. These kids are so cool.

Syd climbed up here herself to channel Whale Rider

"Mama, can I just go lay over there and watch the people go by?" *swoon*

She was all about this rocking horse. She nearly rocked herself right over the front.

How cute is this?! Love my little reader.

This week my goal is to get back to the gym and get my eating habits under control. I started trying to minimize dairy, but it's not really having as big an impact as I'd like so I've got to try something new. Any suggestions? I think the biggest problem is that as soon as I limit something, I rebel against the limit, so I'm thinking about doing a "free day," as in six days of controlled eating with one day where I eat whatever I want. We'll see how it goes. I'd also like to finish our big family project, which is in a constant state of finishing right now. Pictures soon, I hope.