Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Christmas Week

Christmas week Monday, sonigram shows everything to be in normal "perfect" progression for Fiona's sibling. Recent scene in the kitchen, child on a stool in front of pregnant mama. She alternately pats, hugs, jiggles the obtrusive abdomen. "I want the baby out noooow, she says. Chuckling, "well, you've got to wait a bit longer. Babies come out when they're ready to." "But I want my baby nooow!" push-pulling on my stomach, gently enough and yet with that almost 4 urgency that she's demonstrated as I-wuv-you-so-much-I-want-to-eat-your-face-take-off-your-head intensity. We're working on new, creative, different ways to show love rather than tackling at full speed, love-wallops, or suffocating whole head hugs.

Tuesday, Wednesday, baking baking baking, shopping Toys for Tots, food, baking baking baking. I was volunteered by Gary to bake a bit for a straggler's Christmas. I enjoy baking and I really like to give things away---that way I get to taste'em but they're not in the house for weeks tempting us. So I baked up a few pies, double batch of cookies, pudding-filled cupcakes, brownies & gingerbread. Gary got his apple pie out of the deal so he was happy. Everything went over well I'm told, and I'm quite content.

Thursday...rest & illness??
There was an illness in the house. Fiona had an odd off and on fever for almost 4 days, but she wasn't especially cranky or otherwise affected. Then she threw up eve of Christmas eve, fever broke, the illness appeared to have passed. But then there was me, and I don't think I realized how out of it I was until I started to feel better post-Christmas. After obligations we attempted to get to Mile Hi for an afternoon Eve service. We were running later than expected and had an 'agent' working for us already there, he said after a certain point that there was just no way to get in, the sanctuary was at total capacity. And if you could see how big the place is, well, it's impressive. So we had to let that go, which was just as well as Gary had plans to hit the mall also. Although we planned to have Christmas Eve dinner, it was a bit late and we decided to flex it--plus Gary said he'd cook. I was pretty near cooked completely out. Made lite supper, reindeer food & left pie for the jolly man in red. Opened our Eve gifts, watched It's a Wonderful Life, and Santa was on his way as soon as Fiona's head hit the pillow. The tactic of keeping her awake all day worked like a charm.

Friday, oh, happy day!
WE were actually up before the child. It was Gary who eventually woke her. She seemed a little disappointed at first 'cause she didn't walk all the way around the tree and almost just went right back to her room. But when she did see the gift Santa left, she was agape for a few moments before diving right in, playing with & inspecting the jogging stroller-with-smashed-handles. Several other of the toys have been great hits, thank goodness. Oddly (we thought) she was definitely not into wearing the white coat that came with the Doctor dress-up set. The tools, yes. The coat, almost a fearful aversion. I feel fulfilled when I get to watch what Fiona does with a toy, to see her gaining enjoyment in simple play causes a sort of sublime contentment within.

Saturday...resting the rest of illness.
Whatever it was started to pass. It's been cold outside so there hasn't been much out-door play. I really miss chilly winter running. Fiona is enamored of her jogging stroller and decided that she needed to go out for a run. Ah, were it somewhat warmer I'd definitely be up for a long walk outside. For now, my workout wear is starting to, er, pull a bit around the middle. I'm not sure how much longer it'll last. I could rant here about maternity clothing options, quality, availability, but I'll save that for another post.

Sunday, lovely MAXIMIZE at Mile Hi. Finally! I was able to sit through almost an entire service without crying too much. Then home again, relaxing and ham-bake casserole.

All in all a lovely, sweet, simple Christmas. I wouldn't trade it for anything, and I hope we can repeat it in spirit. Much gratitude for a wonderfully blessed 2009, may the New Calendar Year be joyful and productive!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Tantrums---they're not just for kids!

I had a tantrum, a glitch as someone called it. It happened this weekend, in the midst of pregnant hormones hindering prep for departure to Christmas Party at a friendly home. I have been having a bit of a rough time adjusting to new circumstances. Circumstances, that, while offering opportunity can deliver a great deal of stress. Growth can be painful, and life is not promised to us without pain or loss. Emotional and spiritual growth effectively are loss in very particular ways. Leaving old behaviors behind and trying out newer healthier habits, well, it can be unsettling to say the least. My loving husband treated the situation with grace, and eventually I was able to relax and enjoy the rest of the evening. Fiona, a rarely seen level of CUTE all night, ate too much sugar, vomited some, and as finale to her all-evening dance, crawled under a coffee table looking at the action from an angle I well remember from childhood---we decided it was definitely time to call it a night.

Last week we did make a trip to see Santa Claus. A great Santa---I think we found the real one! When he made his appearance from his break, Fiona bounces up and down, piping "Saaantaa! Saanntaaa!" Now that the tree is in the house, and the decor has been spread about somewhat, I have to keep reminding her that Christmas isn't here yet, but it will be soon enough.

Friday, December 11, 2009


Well, the Turkey was yummy. There are still leftovers in the fridge that I'm supposed to make Turkey Pockets with---'cause pot-pie pans are silly-expensive, and we're on lock down.

We actually spent Thanksgiving at a friend's house, chatting and eating all afternoon. Fiona running about making the teenagers tired. The following day, at some ree-diculous hour of the morning Gary woke me with a spray of bubbles. He was so excited to be awake, I suggested he get some black Friday experience. So, brave soul, he ventured out in the frozen dark to vie for a few gifts for Fiona and returned triumphant. (Thank-the-Goodness for forethought of a Christmas jar.) Now that I understand the reasoning, maybe I'll take advantage next year. Our turkey-day friends related how they have a plan: she meets with sisters-in-law, sisters, & friends, he makes the breakfast burritos and gets the coffee. This year, I stayed in and got the oven going with breakfast and then the turkey. Turkey for us is somewhat a compulsion, we cannot go without leftovers on the holiday weekend. The turkey was particularly potent, and every time we ate it, we passed summarily out. Kinda makes me wonder if Butterball does something to their birds.

We enjoyed our holiday repeat-meal. Fiona likes to say prayers at the table when we're all sitting there, grateful that our needs are met today. She typically thanks god for Mama & Papa, Mercy & Jack, and sometimes even dinosaur bones & The Fishes.

Hopefully this weekend we'll get a tree and pull out the decorations. Which I'm positive will only further the Fiona-fervor about Christmas. She could barely contain herself when some gifts arrived from Gramma. She insisted on calling to say, "tell her what book this is" translated, "ask what the book was." Gramma was accommodating enough to give me the title as to avoid a duplication in our in house library. Little Girl decided she wanted to shop for a new book rather than donate the duplicate to the library, and later victoriously called Gramma to report what books she got in trade for the dupe-Where the Wild Things Are. Though I'm not sure that Gramma understood all that she said---"Berenstein Bears" is a mouthful, but "Dinosaurs" is rather easy.

The gestating sibling has been along for the ride of course, and I'm feeling well. We've a sonigram scheduled in a couple of weeks, looking forward to the added security that all is well in there. I'm shocked at how commonplace all this "peeking" has become. It seems, just 20 years ago, none of the technology was in standard use, women had only instinct to go on, and may have been lucky to listen to a simple heartbeat. Incidentally, we will not find out baby's gender. I prefer the surprise, it's a carrot for successful labor. Gary and I also believe that some things in life were meant to be a surprise.

Next post, Christmas decor & cocoa. Until then keeping warm and doing the next right thing.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Friday, November 6, 2009

This morning.

Fiona crabbin' out of bed, zombie-walks to the kitchen, "Mama?" I answer with a query about what she'd like for breakfast. Get my leg hug, then she takes me by the hand over to the couch, "You need a cuddle sweetheart?"

Even if I did have plans this morning, this was a better way to start the day than any other.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Two nights ago I "braved" the tail end of a recent storm to finish Fiona's Mermaid costume. The storm, while not a blizzard, dropped upwards of 18 inches of snow over two and a half days. Thursday last was Fiona's first sledding experience, woe to those who forget their cameras. It wasn't a very big hill, but it was a good sled with good friends and that's what really matters. Yesterday my little girl and I spent a solid hour smashing up the front yard snow building a snow-dinosaur-dragon & snow-fighting. I love the snow. Even though I shoveled 3 times in one day...I.Love.Snow.

Anyway, for a while before tonight with the costume in the works, Fiona has been chattering about "riding the dolphin at the zoo" and some mention of "a mermaid's saddle on the dolphin at the zoo." The first few times, I didn't get it. Then it finally dawned on me that she wanted to ride the dolphin at the zoo in her mermaid costume. OH! So that was our main mission today. Besides Boo at the Zoo, a definite bonus, we had to make it to the Carousel so Fiona could ride the dolphin as a mermaid. Mission accomplished.... ++candy.

Then we headed to Miss M's house for a small Halloween potluck. Always a pleasure to meet new people, and most definitely always fun to hang out with Miss M.


Saturday, October 24, 2009

Preggie Punkin Clothes

I shopped for maternity clothes today. A chore, but more fun this time around as I'm in totally different shape than when we started this whole family process 4 years ago. I know what is practical to wear, I know what I like to wear. I'm really getting more comfortable with a "love the belly" attitude. I might say that I'm enjoying being pregnant this time, but then it's pretty early on to make that call. When I feel well, much of the time surprisingly, I wonder if I'm really pregnant---it's that different.

Rock Creek Farm is awesome. It's where we went last year to get pumpkins and where I'm sure we'll return for years after, at least until we grow our own. It's a biiig place, the corn mazes aren't less than a mile long, and they won't let anyone into them after 4 pm. Totally a working farm, we saw the Collie out herding the goats on our way in. Today was gorgeous early on with clear views of the mountains & beautiful cloudscapes. "Happy little clouds," said Gary. By the time we got to the farm this afternoon the front had started moving in and chill winds whipped across the pumpkin fields. We didn't spend much time out there this year. The early frost had ruined a lot of the crop, even as novices we could tell. The farmers (or farmers' helpers) had gone ahead and removed most of the viable carving pumpkins and put them in crates for easier access. A really nice customer service touch. As it turns out, only the BIG, thick skinned, super-firm pumpkins survived. So this year our jack-o-lanterns are going to be about the same size---certainly not an issue for Fiona, who, insisted on a big pumpkin 'cause she's "a big girl". She was a champ trying to carry it to the car. Priceless.

Smilin' Monkey Girl

That is all. :)

Sunday, October 18, 2009


I can't express enough gratitude for the blessing of good friends. MJJ, hangin' out Friday night with Noodles was awesome. Fiona & I had a busy day Saturday, visiting pumpkin patch, then grocery shopping (always an adventure). Today I got a treat, a few hours of uninterrupted sewing at Miss M's. It's awesome. Here's what we got done so far...

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

There was a little girl who had
a little curl,
Right in the middle of her forehead.
When she was good she was very
very good,
And when she was bad she was

Minus the curl, this summarizes my day. *sigh*

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Hapai: Numero Dos

Yup, there's that word again, long time ago I sent out an email announcement with Hapai in the title. I still like "hapai" better than "pregnant". We visited Dr. Eastman-Gallo (here on referred to as Dr. E-G) yesterday, confirmed what I already knew. I heard a faint tiny heart beat; faint 'cause baby was probably hanging out in the back & 'cause as yet is small. In another month we'll hear more. Doc said I was "on target" for 10 weeks.

Fiona was worried about me, she thought that I needed to be fixed. She expressed over and over that she did NOT want to go to the doctor, to which I clarified, "YOU are only visiting the doctor, it's MOMMY that needs to go to the doctor." She said she'd be there "for the doctor to fix me", again clarification that sometimes "we go to the doctor when we just need to know that everything is okay...that's what this is, mommy's going to the doctor for a check-up to see if everything is okay." She handled herself pretty well, enjoyed telling me to lie down on the table & we sang "The Ants Go Marching". Gary was there, and the two of them went to go get chocolate milk while I finished up with the Doc. I was supposed to get blood-work done but the fire alarm went off. A real fire alarm, not a drill. So we sat outside a few minutes and watched the firemen arrive & dress, then go into the building. Exciting, especially for Little Girl! Maybe we'll hear about the alarm reason when I return for the blood-work in a couple of weeks.

So we're excited! Fiona's not exactly sure about what's happening 'cause there's no physical evidence (i.e. BELLY, yet). And it's a long way 'til sibling Thomas arrives. Not sure how much information really sinks in, and what is spouted back can be convoluted. Starting another kind of endurance "race", but when I think about it pregnancy is only the first leg of the race. Then comes baby-hood, toddler-hood, preschooler, so on and so forth. Person-building is a long term endurance challenge, I hope I'm up to the task. As Gary said, I'm getting a promotion.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Of carts & cocoa

First SNOW of the season, sticking & edible for small children. Hot Cocoa with marshmallow cream, which Little Girl refuses to take advice on how not to burn her mouth. Then maybe she just doesn't have the skill yet. My fault, it's too hot.

Yesterday a hard day, not without bright spots, but overall just difficult. Temper tantrums (mine & hers), whining, and budgeting, add hormones of a very special variety and we're jetisoned into no man's land. In the grocery store, the unwieldy (much motherly-despised) "Car-cart". You may have seen them, Deeper wider grocery cart with a big plastic car attached to the front, in single & double versions. Red for fire engine, blue for police car. I find myself hoping every grocery trip that we won't find one available, and that if there is one available I will only use the single version. The double is just ridiculous. These Car-Carts supposedly keep kids happy & entertained for the duration of shopping---maybe that works if the kids are doped one way or another, or still young enough to be fooled that they might actually be driving. Not so for my child. She'll sit still in it for about 15 minutes, until it really sinks in that she's not getting the chocolate milk/sugar/vending machine surprise that she so desires. Then all bets are off. She's popping her head out muppet-style, she's climbing on the car trying out all possible positions. Upside-down, inside-out, standing hanging out the window, lying across the seat feet hanging left-head hanging right. At one point we met up with another mom & child roughly similar age of Fiona. This mom was having a similar issue with her son. In passing, we both said, almost simultaneously, "Get back IN the car, please!" Her son was hanging out the 'windshield' with a foot apparently stuck between the dual steering wheels---she was unluckily saddled with the double wide Car-Cart. I can at least say that I've learned a new skill. Can I add "expert artful piloting/manipulation of giantous clumsy Fire-Engine Car-Cart fully laden with grocery & child"?

Right now, she's quirming in her seat, "Mama, I want some more, cocoa."

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Barbie Girl in her Barbie world...

But not really. The Jeep---is a hand-down from a good friend. Decals removed it's not really a Barbie Jeep anymore, but I can't resist the residual connection with the song. It's amazing how fast kiddos will pick up a skill that they want to learn. It was supposed to be a surprise on a random Saturday morning, and I almost succeeded in this. Except that Little Girl went out to the yard to play that morning, in a quiet moment I went to look for her. She answered me from the garage, "Mommy! I'm in my white car!!" That's a surprise fail. "Oh, um, Fiona, I'm not sure that's your car. We'll have to wait until Papa comes home, okay?" But she knew, they always know. So, until Gary got home I listened over and over again to "Is it MY car, Mama? It's MY car." To which I replied, "I don't know, we have to wait for Papa." A trip to Target for stickers, and a short tutorial, and she's off. Cruising around the back yard like she's always been driving.

And as a bonus, some video when Little Girl got the upper hand on Mama. I was incapacitated by little flutter-blasts + the insane cute.

It's a real October day, chilly, rainy, blustery...beautiful. We love the fall, it's a generative time for us. Fiona has decided she wants to be a purple mermaid for Halloween. And that "Mama's going to be a pink mermaid, and Papa will be a green mer[maid]." Gary hasn't exactly agreed to this, though he did say that if we procure a grey or white beard, trident, & crown, he would pose a formidable Poseidon. This will be the first time I've attempted sewing a costume, and the most complicated thing I've attempted to make sew far. Miss M & I already have a "playdate" set up for this project.

If you haven't been following football, Broncos beat the Cowboys (woo-hoo!) and are 4-0. Gary is reserving judgment until after they play the Patriots this weekend. I, however, am already on the bandwagon. Why? Because it's FUN. :)
Happy October!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Friday night, what?

This weekend, Friday, I fell asleep early after putting Little Girl to bed. Gary arrived home after some function with a buddy, he came down stairs, "Hey, what happened to Fiona's face?"
"What?" slightly alarmed & groggy, I sat up.
"What happened to her face?" he repeats. "Come up stairs and look."
I roll off the bed where I had been reading and follow him upstairs, racking my brain to remember if she hit anything, ran into anything, ate anything---anything out of ordinary.
Upon opening the door to her room I realize what he really means is what did she do to her face.

That's washable marker. All over her arms & legs & face. I let her sleep it off.
First thing Saturday morning, "Good morning, sweetheart, what did you draw on yourself?"
"Those are my race numbers mommy!"

Oh, right, silly me.

We didn't discover the rocks under her pillow until much later Saturday. Sometimes I'd really like film of what she does to occupy herself until she actually goes to sleep, it must be an impressive imaginative display what with all the random objects and stacks of books we find.

A great weekend with the beginning of football and some lovely fall-type weather. The Maple out back is already beginning to turn I think.

Go Broncos! and by default, Go Packers!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Party Animals

Little Girl has started partying, already, with Porter. In the middle of the night when she wakes, seemingly because she has to potty, the cat hears her and bounds upstairs. I know that he bounds up the stairs because the infernal you-won't-catch-a-bird-with-this-on bell makes a racket. I swear, somehow the Cowprint Killah sneaks about on occasion with the bell silent---why he won't give us some respectful quiet at 2 am as he's one his way to rile up The Child, I don't know. *snerk*

Fiona tells the story of Porter at night, "Kitty's at my door, an' he says, 'meow let me in meow' and so I let him in...."
Okay, great, but you know, Fiona, you can say, "No, kitty, I'm sleeping." To which she smiles. that angelic-small-child-smile. The partying has got to stop though, 'cause it takes a serious toll on my sleep, not to mention the bear of a child that results when sleep is unstable.

Yesterday afternoon, one moment the clamorous noise of a normal 3 year old, then nothing. When I went to search for the source of the brazen quietude, I found my daughter passed out on the floor. Now, I'm not foolish, I don't wake a sleeping baby or child. Mostly because running the risk of then having a cranky intolerant miniature tyrant on one's hands is unappealing. So, don't wake a sleeping child within reason. It is my job to ensure that she sleeps at night so I have to wake her, gently, such that she'll be manageable for the rest of the evening.
This week has been on this "schedule":
Fiona & Porter party from 2-5 give or take.
I go upstairs to chase Porter out of her room several times, ask her to stay in bed & go back to sleep.
I doze on couch listening to Fiona singing & reading---where at least twice The Cat has hung out where I could see him, waiting for me to fall asleep completely then he returns to The Party. B*stard.
Eventually books drop loudly to the floor one at a time---then she sleeps until 9 or 10 am. Which I admit can be nice in a way, definitely throws off whatever plans I had though. I may not sleep again until that night, but Fiona has passed out on the floor twice this week.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Summer Days

A beautiful, chill, late summer morning, just the hint that Autumn will be here soon enough.
But not yet!

Last Friday Fiona & I went out to find adventure. After some tribulation in finding the location we were after, we started Little Girl's first hike under her own power. The guide book had a misprint, mistake, who knows---but 20 odd miles off the mark is quite a typo. The hike is called Lily Mountain, right next to Lily Lake, a shortish distance from the infamous Long's Peak Area (a very popular 14-er overnight hike). At 8500' elevation, of moderate difficulty, just under 2 miles, I worried at first it might be too challenging. I really needn't have worried at all. I sometimes forget that it's Okay to turn around, it's Okay to call it off---this, like everything in life, doesn't have to be a struggle. IF the guidebook was accurate in it's description of the hike, we almost made it to the end. I decided that for Fiona to succeed in making it all the way back to the car on her own, that we should turn back "at that next big rock," just after the switchbacks started. She was compliant, which certainly meant she was tiring. Total distance was definitely a mile, though my pace gauge is off when there are fits & starts of the preschool-age kind, it may have been as much as 1.5 mi.

Everyone we met on the trail was more than gracious allowing Fiona to "say HI to the puppy dog!" My favorite dogs we saw were the Mini-Australian Sheperds, not too small, not too big, and smart! One day we'll have a dog, one day.

All in all we were on the trail for almost 2 hours, gone from the house all day, next time we head up there we plan to visit the lake which looked inviting. Fiona was belligerently tired, and after she issued her new tantrum trademark blood curdling scream we headed home. Aside: Yesterday after a long bike ride with Jack in the open space, car windows down, she screamed so loudly it echoed down the block---wow.

Other classic summertime activities, picnics at the playground with Friend Jack.

Sidewalk chalking.

And cool 'late' night visits to Bonnie Brae---if ever in Denver one should most definitely sample all of Bonnie Brae Ice Cream's home made flavors. The Butter Brickle is famous. Miss M treated us last night, and Fiona absolutely refused a napkin. Can ya blame the little person having a whiny tantrum when we finally got home? Way past bed time, coming down off a sugar high...I must be delusional if I thought it wouldn't happen.

So it goes, so it happily goes!

Thursday, August 13, 2009


It gets warm here. Rarely I would call it hot, but most certainly warm. While this past Sunday started out warm, it ended up downright HOT. I finished my Half Iron Man distance triathlon in 7:47:47. Plenty of time under my 8 hour goal! I'm proud. 5430 Long Course Race Report

Gary & Fiona didn't make it to the race unfortunately. Apparently Fiona's nap schedule was obliterated for the day, quite possibly due to my super early mornin' snuggle pre-departure for my race. She passed out around noon & though Gary even banged up against her bed with the vacuum, she didn't budge. I don't blame him for not wanting to drag her out of bed, cranky, and sleepless to hang out in hot sun for what would've been hours. So, instead he cleaned house & made bleu cheese bacon burgers on sweet chili bread, with mesclun greens, pickles & olives. Ginger ale too boot, and French Pot small batch ice cream. It was lovely. Miss M did make the trip to Boulder & got to see me cross the finish line, it was really great having someone there I knew that I could chat with & celebrate with. Thank you, M!

This week has been recovery, the first time the notion of going back to the gym occurred to me at all last night. A good sign. I figure this afternoon will be easy strength train & lite cardio, maybe some yoga too, if I'm lucky.

Fiona has spent numerous days at the pool with Mercy & Jack, as have I when not picking up hours at the bike shop. She's becoming so confident on her bike that I will probably have to start riding with her instead of walking. Last week she rode a solid 2 miles from our house to the Brunner Farm House, only managing to frighten me once the whole ride. Yesterday I surprised her with a water bottle cage, mounted to her handlebars. Reminding her that she wanted to ride her bike was the only catalyst strong enough to rouse her from napping last afternoon. Trying to make Autumn plans for some travel, I hope some camping, too. We shall see, we shall see.

Yes, yes, she has a little laptop. It's sooner than I would've liked, reminds me of a Speak n' Read. The thing is acceptable for now, and a while to come I think. Screen time is still limited, as is TV, and everything else electronic. Now if only I could hold the same rule for myself! :)

Is There Really A Human Race?

by Jaime Lee Curtis, illustrated by Laura Cornell

Is there really a human race?
Is it going on now all over the place?
When did it start?
Who said, "Ready, set, go?"
Did it start on my birthday?
I really must know.

Do I warm up and stretch? Do I practice and train?
Do I get my own coach? Do I get my own lane?
Do I race in the snow? Do I race in a twister?
Am I racing my friends? Am I racing my sister?
If the race is a relay, is Dad on my team?
And his dad and his dad? You know what I mean.

Is the race like a loop or an obstacle course?
Am I a jockey, or am I a horse?
Is there pushing and shoving to get to the lead?
If the race is unfair, will I succeed?

Do some of us win? Do some of us lose?
Is winning or losing something I choose?
Why am I racing? What am I winning?
Does all of my running keep the world spinning?
If I get off track when I take the wrong turn, do I make my way back from mistakes?
Do I learn?

Is it a sprint? A dash to the end?
Am I aware of the time that I spend?
And why do I do it, this zillion yard dash?
If we don't help each other, we're all going to...

Sometimes it's better not to go fast.
There are beautiful sights to be seen when you're last.
Shouldn't it be that you just try your best?
And that's more important than beating the rest?
Shouldn't it be looking back at the end that you judge your own race by the help that you lend?

So, takes what's inside you and make big, bold choices.
And for those who can't speak for themselves use bold voices.
And make friends, and love well, bring art to this place.
And make the world better for the whole human race.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Pie in the Sky July

Independence day (a while ago now, I know) was great. We walked to the County Commons to watch fireworks. Fiona had a ball twirling & playing frisbee with new friends. She got tired of the fireworks display after a little while though, and actually said she wanted to go to bed.

Then there's the PIES. I made a strawberry rhubarb pie that was beautiful & delicious. Then I made another one...it wasn't as good as the first one, still really tasty but not perfect. There is something I must be doing that's meditative during the first pie attempts, that I can't seem to duplicate with subsequent pies. More study is needed.

Then there's gymnastics.

Fiona got a leotard, then wore it for 2 days & nights.

And the beaching/swimming.

And Dragon Boat Festival---FLYING DRAGONS!!!
Our team holds the record for the 500m course (HOORAY), but we lost on a technicality to the Florida Chop Suey this year (BOO).

And that's how summer time is, lots of fun, busybusybusy.

My Olympic distance race, on the 12th, went SO much better than the Sprint (June). I took 40 minutes off my previous Oly time. WOW. Race Report here. I was so pleased and proud, felt fresh afterward too!

Last week we took an evening out to see Walking With Dinosaurs which was neato. Fiona was on the edge of her seat for real, just about the entire show. At intermission she was fairly concerned that it might be over with. After pointing out that it was just a potty break for everyone, she felt better, but still took some convincing before she decided it was okay to get up & go with me to the ladies.

Yesterday, funny things mothers end up saying:
"Stop using the dog on my hair, please!" (a wooden toy dog, while she was "making my hair")
"Honey, don't touch your face after you touch your bottom. STOP rubbing your eye---you just touched your anus!" (such an un-pretty word, but all the books say to call the parts what they are...)
Cheerily pluggin' along!
Next weekend, HIM!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Yogic Soundtrack

This morning as I was mid-practice of a short form Ashtanga, Fiona grabbed her tambourine, a mallet, and a maraca...my yoga soundtrack, direct feed from the universe special just for me. little moment.

Yesterday, a couple block walk to and from a pool in MJJ Crew neighborhood...someone (who shall remain nameless *ahem*) had the super-fantastic idea Little girl could use the scooter (a 3 wheel Radio Flyer) while friend-Jack used his bike. Fiona proceeded to make her way, slowly slowly slowly toward the pool...she banged her ankle...she banged her ankle again...Mercy dragged her a little while, I dragged her a little while---I say dragged because pull lends the notion that it was comfortable to bend partially over as a humpback might while handling the child-laden scooter. Anyway, we made it to the pool with little incident, thankfully. I was admittedly grumpy at the prospect of the scooter to begin with 'cause I could just see how it would play out....and I was already somewhat hungry.

The pool was great, I'm jealous that MJJ have a practical 25 yd lap pool + kiddie pool in their neighborhood, splendiferous with awnings, chaises, lifegaurds, showers, & lovely bathrooms. All it lacks is an ice cream and taco vendor---ooo, possible career opportunity for me?

So right as we've decide time is up, Fiona dumped a cup of water over a little girl's head, after which she had to apologize, ask if there was anything she could do---this mostly to the mother 'cause the one year old mainly was disturbed by the sudden-ness of it I bet. It was derned impossible to keep Fiona still long enough to attempt to teach her how to hold her breath & blow some face-in-the-water bubbles, let alone take pictures. After some tantrumming & potty breaks, we make it back to the bike/scooter parking area, donned PPE and began the journey back to MJJ house. What a journey it was.

After a decent headstart Fiona showed lots of promise on the scooter, pushing along with her right leg. Then the rest of the party quickly caught up and passed us, she again was somewhat frantic that we (read:she) would be left behind. Try as she might though she just couldn't scoot fast enough to catch up. It was really warm that day, and we were hungry. I'm proud of myself that I didn't lose my temper all the way back, remained encouraging and as positive as possible in the screaming face of Fiona's determination. She clipped her ankle several more times, each time she cried louder and longer. Eventually she just never stopped crying, pushing that scooter along CRYING, and knocking her ankle again, and CRYING, kept scooting...CRYING.

Mama: "Fiona you don't have to keep riding the scooter you can take a break."
Little Girl: "Noooo!" then the ankle again, and she's off scootin' and cryin'. Panic at being so far behind.
Mama: "Look they're waiting on us, they're just waaaay up there, it's okay."
Little Girl: crying.
Mama: at eye level "Fiona, you can stop if it hurts, it's OKAY. You learned how to scooter, that's awesome. You're really determined, that's great! Now you can stop if it hurts, okay?"
Little Girl: "Nooo, I wanna ride scooter!" sobbing.
and repeat dialogue, ALL THE WAY BACK TO PLACE OF ORIGIN.

Eventually, with about half a block to go, she did get off and walk a little ways while I carried the scooter, but immediately upon entering hearing/listening distance of Mercy & Jack & friends, she said she wanted to ride again and finished the trip in very tenacious style.
"My little endurance athlete," I said, "she wouldn't stop, she was totally determined to ride it all the way here...kept going even though it hurt."
To which my newest & dear friend Mercy replied, "GEE, Ada, I wonder where she gets that from?" *snerk*

Friday, June 26, 2009

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Fairy Dust

This morning, on the deck, with the bag of potting soil...
A big creative mess! Little Girl apparently enjoys tossing dirt in the air, so as to ensure total coverage. When she decided to come inside, I had to funnel her straight to the bathroom for an early shower (unhappy) to get the finer dust from her scalp & hair. She had dirt down her back as if she'd suddenly grown a strip of dark downy fur.
Preschooler's fairy dust.

Couple of evenings ago, on the guest room/office futon, it was extraordinarily important that she put me to bed. Fiona did it thoroughly, complete with kisses on the forehead, the tucking in, removal of the hairpin, and a lengthy fairy tale story resplendent with a prince, Peter Pan, the Princess, the little Mermaid, the king, and "somesing happens...but then somesing didn't happen"....and a dragon.

I complete my first race of the season this past weekend. It was harder than I figured, I messed up my hydration & fueling (water n' food) pretty bad, got some heat stress, and cried 'cause I didn't hit my goal of a sub 2-hour race. I did see improvement with my bike pacing & especially swim pacing compared to my first sprint. Race Report here. After an insanely busy couple of weeks just before the race things have calmed down somewhat this week, inasmuch as one might say my life with Little Girl is "calm" as busy as we have become somehow.

Fiona started gymnastics again, in her third week today. Was visibly trembling with excitement when I told her she was going to get to attend again, could barely contain herself. Little friend Jack is in the same class, and while he sits there with some solemnity following instructions, Fiona is off bouncing about testing the young teachers' boundaries & limits with them trying to keep her on task. I think she's just so excited it's hard for her to keep on task!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Fairies, again?

We read the My Very Own Fairy Tale book twice today, once at naptime then again at bed time. I almost have the entire book memorized, my recitation lacks accuracy. (The book is about a group of fairies that need to crown a princess, they each bring a letter with a descriptive word that eventually spells out Fiona's full name, a company called IseeMe.) Here's some Amazing: as soon as I'm really starting to get complacent with Fiona's development something new happens, and everything is refreshed. It's always been that way, when I got used to her sitting she started crawling, used to her crawling she started walking,etc. Well, the fairy story has really been getting on my nerves lately, just 'cause I'm so tired of reading it. But tonight, Little Girl, decided that she wanted to identify each letter of her name in the text, she did so very successfully on every page. Wow. Suddenly the book was new again, I found a new zest in its reading.

One of my favorite girl friends came to visit this weekend. It was hard for Fiona to accept that Carrie wasn't here for her. I have to note how comforting it was to have a long time friend around, especially one that knows how to deal with small children so well. Carrie is a bright star. After she flew away on Sunday I realized that we didn't take any pictures at all. Too sad.

We've been spending lots of time with the MJJ crew, if I can find a way to post it, to follow is a video, priceless 3 year old view of the world. Fiona wandering with the camera while it's taking video, ending with a would-be shot of Jack.

In other news, I'm in the hunt for my perfect wetsuit, though it's obvious at this point I will have to rent own for my first race this weekend---hopefully I can find a place that has one available. This race sort of snuck up on me, my head was buried in organization & cleaning last week such that I didn't even attempt to look ahead until today. Essentially this sprint is a training exercise though, probably for transitions, I know I'll make some new personal best 'cause my training times have improved so drastically this past few months. I'm excited!

p.s. there was a beautiful, full arch rainbow today when we left the gym, Fiona said she wanted to to "that way, to tha end". :)

Thursday, June 11, 2009

one of my days this week

house cleaning/organizing first thing this morning
to tiny person gymnastics & short run
to home for food, refreshment, carseat transfer to Truck
to Miss M's for The Blankie's Ribbon repair
to far away recycling place for leaves that The Man never took back in November
to home to pick up branches galore from landlord "gardening" extravaganza this past weekend
to B-field branch recycling
to home to reload truck with branches that had been sitting in yard since before we moved in (must trip back to branch recycle later I guess)
then re-claiming cars, clean out plus-numerous wrappers, cig-boxes, energy drink bottles from The Man's truck---'cause that's love ;)
INto house to assess what work remains
after brief explosion at Little Girl for not moving fast enough getting plethora of toys back to her room---realize I'm hungry, I should eat very soon, otherwise there'll be a melt down
to computer to lament that I haven't trained much this week 'cause of all personal agenda, remind myself that this is a hobby and it's okay
on phone to arrange Little Girl care early tomorrow morning for my looong ride & brick


next up, dinner, the real house clean, prep for tomorrow hopefully including a bike chain cleaning....
that's been the day

Thursday, May 21, 2009

The Cat Snores

Really, I mean he really snores. Some nights when Porter chooses to sleep at the foot of the bed, both Gary and I have been awakened by the soft persistent noise. Lay there awake a few moments, listening hard, discerning whether or not Little Girl is awake upstairs? oh, no, it's just the cat snoring.

Yesterday, a slightly stormy afternoon. Fiona wanted to sit outside, she took her crocheted throw and sat on the Tuffo on the deck out back. After a while I joined her, it drizzled a bit, pit-pats on the impermeable blanket backing. We brought up the big side huddling under the green stripes, listening for Tha 'Under. Once or twice thunder rumbled above us or nearby, Fiona, grey eyes wide, ears perked, "Tha 'Under! Tha 'Under, Mama!" she quiets again, listening with her whole being. She takes great care to ensure all my appendages under the blank-tent, asking me if I'm cozy. Little Moment.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Love leaves behind much more than Death can take. That's what the pastor said today. {fair warning this is an emotional post} I ventured out on this beautiful day to attend the funeral of a friend. A woman I have known since we moved to Denver, 2, seemingly short, years ago. She was beautiful, adventurous, possessing an eclectic sense of humor, an infectious laugh, a gorgeous smile, and a childlike ability to bring joy wherever she went. She had found wondrous love in the past year, she had recently discovered she was to be a mother, she had spent the recent weekends with many friends that love her dearly.
She shot herself last Wednesday evening.

When I heard the terrible news on Thursday, "Why??" echoed over and over in my head.

This is my first friend lost, not to old age, not to obvious disease, and not to fatal accident. This friend was lost to that terrible belief that no one would understand, nothing could get better, or what would come after would be unbearable.

No thing is unbearable with support of family, friends, and faith. None. We are fragile, and precious...and we do not have to go through anything alone unless we choose to. We are only as sick as our secrets, she chose to keep hers.

The service was lovely & fitting, though I've not much to compare it to. I viewed her body, sat, talked with friends & her family, cried and cried, and cried some more. I looked into searching eyes of lamenting relatives, practicing alternatives to the cliched "sorry for your loss". I followed the privileged hearse, running lights, stopping traffic, death parade showing everyone, this person was so loved. I watched the casket lowered into the ground, body in a box within a box, interred. I said good-bye to my friend. The entire process is fascinating to me, we insulate ourselves from death so vehemently, it's no wonder I know so little about death ceremonies. *SIGH* Be at peace SLJ.

Do not stand at my grave and weep;
I am not there, I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.
When you awaken in the morning's hush
I am the swift uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft stars that shine at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry;
I am not there; I did not die.
--- Mary Elizabeth Frye

Love leaves behind much more than Death can take.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Growing growing, gone & Bike-to-Playground

This week, it really sank in that Fiona is no longer in Toddler sizes. Each seasonal shopping trip it sinks in a little bit more, she's growing up, never a baby again. *sigh*
We were out and about & a sock purchase was in order, most of her socks are too small now. Looking at all the little person socks for sale, there's the gap between 4-6yr size and Little Girl size, 9 1/2 -4??? I'm still learning about children's shoe/sock sizing schemes, clothing is so much more self explanatory. So picking out polka-dot socks, they're so BIG---she used to have such tiny feet!

Mid-week we visited Miss M for a lengthy day in order to knock out that initial experimental period of creation for the Papa's Shirts Dresses. Gary has discarded several shirts, I got it in my head to make them into summer dresses for Fiona, and IT WORKED! Beautifully! Miss M is a seamstress-super-star, and her help was instrumental. It might've taken me a week or so to complete one dress---we pulled it together in a few hours. What a learning experience, I'm totally hooked. Buy a pattern, pick the material, voila! Clothes for entire summer! Bonus that the patterns cover size 4-6x and are reusable. Fiona adores it, she slept with it that night, and wore it the next day, all day, naptime, then riding her bike to the playground.

First bike ride: I was there at the handlebar the entire 3.5 block trip. She likes to coast. After getting a little speed though she seems to forget how to brake. So braking and stopping are the practice goals. She talked several times about how "we're a family...an' we all have bikes! we'll all bike ride together {one day}!" After a fall I was immensely proud to see her pop right up, and get right back on the bike without a prompt! I didn't have to say anything except, "Are you ok? (some assessment here)...wow! Great job getting back on the bike, Fiona!" She fell maybe 4 times, mostly due to curb'n'gutter combos, and all of which I caught her in some form or other. Again, another skill where the small details involved might be overlooked, like learning to walk off a high-centered wheel. Her first practice foray in the big world, I tried to show her the stop signs, the cars that were coming & going periodically, why it's important to move out of the street as soon as possible. Teaching her to pay attention to the world around her while at the same time focusing on the task underfoot. It's a challenge to find the right words, simplfied, and positive.

A gorgeous week, looking forward to long runs & bikes this weekend. NO MORE MISSED WORKOUTS, save for injury or illness (knocking on wood). Because I know truly, that I will feel it during HIM.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Birthday Buzz

It was quiet this weekend. My face was reacting severely to the mango encounter I wasn't really into going OUT. We shopped bikes for Fiona, Gary made a cake (his first attempt at a layer cake), hung out and watched movies for my day.
Then today Fiona was SO excited she asked for her cake first thing this morning. She played outside with her bike for most of the morning. Then we took her birthday money to Jillie Beans Toys to spend wisely, shared a burrito, went to playground, ate ice pops, & watched BOLT. Gary came home, there were chicken tacos, homemade salsa, the pink cake with purple icing, and of course, finally, some presents. Simple, sweet, and easy. Fiona was completely exhausted, having no nap today, went to bed early. Some photos and we'll call it a day. :)

Saturday, May 2, 2009


After 31 years (32 tomorrow) folks, I have had a real allergic reaction, unless you count poison ivy/oak, which I don't---or didn't until I found out that the effect is cumulative, the more a person is exposed over time, the more extreme the reaction. Tuesday, I peeled a mango, peeled it then ate it. Wednesday my ear itched something fierce, had bumps on it. Thursday my eye itched then my mouth, all on the left side of my face. Today my eye is more swollen than before, I feel like I'm deformed, just add a hump and I'm set to play Igore.

I know notta-damn-thing about allergies, only the very general information, and I've no idea how long this will last, or how it should be dealt with. After taking a Benadryl last night I passed out cold on the couch, slept all night, and woke up still puffy & red marked. Isn't there some way to make it stop right now? I don't wanna have a puffy face birthday!

Do. Not. Ever. PEEL. The Mango.

*post post, edit; apparently it's ill advised to excercise while having an allergic reaction...so my workouts wednesday & thursday, sticking to my training plan, most likely made the initial reaction worse, so, here I sit, waiting it out...unable to do much else. :(

Monday, April 27, 2009

All In Fun

Tonight, while tussling with Little Girl, I was told by the less-than-pint-sized person, to "lay down, you're a pwincess...an' I'm'a pwince...." I lay down on the floor, of course. She then asks me to close my eyes. It's important to note here, never completely close your eyes around a small child, especially when asked, even if it's the sweetest request in recorded history. Don't do it. I learned that lesson early on, having been head butted too many times to consider lidded blindness an option at all. I keep my eyes ever so slightly open, to ward off the possible onslaught of toy-foot-pillow-elbow-hand-boogery-fingers-knees-bum. Or what's better than those? Drool, oh, yeah, drool, spittle, saliva...drippy slimy goo. Zerburtz, thank-you-very-much Mr. Cosby, are the order of the evening. But only post "wrestling". I'm almost positive Fiona meant rescuing, but she kept insisting it was wrestling, so I went with it. Anyway, asked to lay down, I'm awaiting the "wrestling", she plonks little hands to each side of my face and proceeds to shake my head back and forth, while her little nose is less than an inch away. Giggling like a fiend! So she "wrestles" me a few more times, finger up my nose, then the zerburtz begin. I love a good zerburt, when done well there's very little mess. But little persons who yet have the fine motor skill to raspberry without dousing the party opposite with spit-spray, well, she's somewhat less skilled. So her zerburtzs are slobbery and wet. It's hard to resist wiping a cheek off after a sloppy kiss, I don't want to offend, but then that must be my issue, 'cause I'm positive she notices not at all. She got the biggest kick tonight from my {much exaggerated} reaction to her zerburtz, and her sudden ability to yank me over by my hood from sitting upright.
What a mix up it suddenly is, how fantastic & exciting to have control, even if in play, even if for a short time! Eventually we calmed down, and then it was bedtime.
A lovely day all in all!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Thank Goodness They're Washable

This past Saturday, I got up really early for volunteering at a health fair, Fiona of course when with me. She watched Wall-E on the laptop off to the side, then had a melt down when it was time to go---it was drizzling, chilly and therefore we couldn't visit the park. In a public situation, remembering to have understanding for a child's disappointment is difficult when she's caterwauling. After an eye-level inside-voice, explanation regarding the things we cannot change, and only can accept, we departed the church. Little one showed signs of tiredness, I was wasted from a late workout the night before + unusually early morning, upon arriving home I put her down for nap. Then I promptly passed out knowing that The Other Half was on his way home. Gary arrives and as it turns out Fiona didn't nap at all, she decided to color her extremities blue...arms, legs, & her face for good measure...

Notice how the dress somehow stayed pretty spotless? wow. Thank the Goodness markers are certainly washable---and so are children. If I had done this with markers as a kid I most likely would have spent a few days partially krishna-fied.
Later, I spent 3.5 hours on a spin bike in the gym---talk about mental toughness training. But I'm proud that I got it done. Minus a run last week when I think I was somewhat ill (Little One was ill previous weekend, as she goes, so do I) my volume for the week looks lovely. Spring is here, the birthdays are next week, I'm scrambling for something to treat Fiona to...we just don't know many people up this way yet, and her friend Jack will be out of town. Something will occur to me I'm sure.
A beautiful day for a run today!

Sunday, April 12, 2009


Hunt for Eggstra Eggsisting Eggs


Well, there's Easter morning. Basket full of candy and toys, chocolate for breakfast, then scrambled eggs, then more chocolate, then a Hunt, and boiled eggs snack....then more sugar, of the Peep variety.

I can feel it coursing through my veins. There will be a sugar hangover later today, tomorrow, no doubt. In Kids Club at The Gym, there's a trend toward a screaming fest the day after sugar-laden holidays, Halloween & Christmas, of course Easter. Mommies dropped the kiddos positive that a day-after-holiday workout is the thing, and the poor girls working the day care are faced with a couple dozen denizens of dessert caterwauling on the 'cane-crash. Sugar really is like crack for kids. Images of tots trying to score some 'cane on the playground come to mind. Fiona inevitably asks more please, just before the melt-down begins.

We dyed eggs at Miss M's house, The Easter Bunny had to do some late night shopping to flesh out the basket goodies, and now Mama is listening to the Non-Nap of the latent sugar high. The initial crash was pretty nasty. After a short discussion of how fun the day would still be if she made the choice to enjoy it, Fiona pulled it back together and it was out of doors on The Hunt. Only 15 minutes or so and it was all over, chilly and damp outside, does not a great egg-hunt-environ make.

A possible Re-Hunt this afternoon with a play-buddy, nothing much planned other than couch cuddling, play off basketball for Gary, and a long run for me. A lovely weekend all in all!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

As a Mamma

I learn to prioritize and multi-task as never before, this is all On The Job Training.

I will clean a morning poo-diaper before breakfast---before coffee, even!

Joining Big Bear & Mama Horse, I squeeze under table too small, into chair too short in order to be served Fairy Blue Tea on a checker table cloth.

I deal with goop of all kinds...poo-goop, poop, nose goop, food goo, play-doh boogers spread about, drool, paint-goop, glue-goo...

I've mentally transformed crumbs as Little Persons' pixie dust.

I decipher gibberish, I'm fully capable translating for gnomes at this point.

After almost 3 years I feel I've mastered Mom-speak, the voice, intonation, verbiage, semantics that only other mothers really understand why we talk like that.

I get more excited than ever before when gifts and surprises are in store.
I get to say things like "Don't eat snow off your boots!"
"Kitty doesn't like it when you push on his eyeball."
"Do you think the key looks comfortable to put in your ear?"
"Yes, sweetheart, everybody & everything poops."

What I give of myself and what I give up sometimes overwhelms if I'm not vigilant in caring for myself so that I may take the best care of my loved ones.

My life is not my own, by choice. Now I know what no one could really describe, what no one could convince me of---now I know why my life is not my own by choice. If I'm to truly wring every drop of human existence from this life, being a Mother, a parent, is an integral part. As a Mama I embrace the change (Choose Having A New Growth Experience), as painful and terrifying as it can be, I strive to always be a better person over all, so I can be a better example to my daughter.

I love my life as a Mama.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Sometimes life events cause wonder and awe. Sometimes, events are inexplicable, sorrowful, making us draw from that deep humanity within...and Be Present. Life is precious, remain grateful, treasure every single moment. I find it's difficult with the daily mendacity of repetitive chores to keep that presence at my mind's forefront, but I do try.

My mind & heart is with my cousins today. All my love.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Blizz Buzz

It was a blizzard, an actual blizzard...which I now understand is defined by winds mostly. Looked like any other snow we've had, but it wasn't letting up at all. Then the wind kicked up somethin' fierce---40+mph, I'm told. When it first started, we talked about going outside to play, we almost made it before the gusts started. Fiona was disappointed, but then she hadn't shown much interest in donning anything more than her new fave attire, The Pink Tulle Dress. She's been wearing it practically every day since I purchased it. Only removed to be washed, then it's on again. The tulle has already taken a beating what with the cat, the car seat Velcro, rock climbing, sand sitting---the condition of the dress simply does not matter to her. She loves it intensely, cannot bear to be parted from it much longer than it takes to wash. Yesterday, after arriving home, she made a trip to the potty, I discovered her moments later stripped out of her warm clothes in order to put on The Dress.

Anyway, we talked about the severe weather outside, sitting on the couch looking out the big front window, horizontal snow, garbage cans trekking mid-street, street sign shaking steadily, "See, sweetheart? It wouldn't be much fun to go out in that right now." She said, "A whizzard momma! It's a whizzard!" Too bad she picked up the BL- part of the word very quickly, I wouldn't mind much if she'd wandered about referring to the impressive weather as a "whizzard". We found lots of things to do, it was the first time we'd been home all day, in-doors in a while. Little One actually suggested Hide-and-Seek, to my utter surprise. I was stunned for an instant because it's a completely new game to us, not sure where she picked it up. "Sure! Let's play!" I commenced counting, she went to hide. Wandering about the house, saying all the requisite phrases to enhance anticipation of being found, "Oh, where is Fiona? Where could she be?" And of course, "Where's my little girl?" She hid well, behind some long items hanging from a shelf in the down stair bathroom. Then it was my turn to hide, which I had only a moment to do 'cause Little Girl doesn't count much. I took off away from the bathroom and crouched behind one louvered door of the laundry area. To an adult it was a ridiculous "hiding" place, with a child it's perfect. Fiona, however, did not see me as I thought she might, her attention focused instead on the stairs, and as she ascended them, she's calling out, "Where's my biiiig woman? Where's my big wooooman?" I only barely succeeded in stifling my giggles at that. After Gary came home early (highways were closing) we made blizzard cookies, thoroughly enjoying the spontaneous mini -holiday.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Trading Underpants

I have a friend, a friend I met at the "Turtle Park" playground. We knew immediately that we'd get along 'cause we let our kids pee outside as needed. Today, a long lounging hang out, from R.E.I grand opening to the mall 'round about. R.E.I is expensive folks, even with all the "discounts" and membership stuff. Miss Fiona picked out a fabulous new sun hat. Sadly she's outgrown her much adored strawberry hat. Would that I could magically make it bigger, it's the hat from Maui, the hat she wore for every beaching trip, the hat that smells like that lovely baby sunscreen. *sigh* The New Hat has whales on it, blue and green, with orange tiny fishes and the occasional quadropus. When she spied it---even though I put all the available hats on the floor in a row, to be sure---the Blue Whale Hat won out over them all. My friend and her son picked a new hat, also, making a cute little shopping trip. The New Hat Crew rode the kids motor train together, by themselves---so exciting and special!

Last summer, we visited the zoo with Miss M and her son. Fiona had an accident, silly of me not to have enough extra clothes on hand, so we borrowed underpants from them. We got to repay the favor today, 'cause Little Mister had an accident. Apparently he was unnerved at first 'cause he thought it was Cinderella underpants he borrowed, but never fear it's Curious George instead...never-you-mind the ruffle 'round the waist.
I ask you, how great is life when we have friends to trade underpants? Great indeed!


Last night, nothing special to start. Homemade pizza, Fiona put an entire ball of raw dough in her mouth, spit it out, bit it again, back in the mouth, then out again. Ew.
She asked to hold hand with Us for a moment, then prayed. "Thank you god, thank you mama, thank you papa." Oh my beating heart...never had I dreamt to be so moved by such a small person with so much love!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Fish Stickers, too

It's 07:20, god bless coffee, I just removed a sticker from the nape of my neck. A fish sticker...which isn't surprising considering the first thing she did yesterday upon opening the package was attach all the stickers to her her knees. If you're new to parenting, here's a tip: stickers migrate. The bike trailer interior has been partly papered with sparkly Power Puff Girls.

Lately it's all about the fish, sharks, whales, octopus, and divers. Most especially purple diver, pink diver, blue diver, and green diver. Diver is around a lot, as is Peter Pan---who by the way, cannot seem to figure out how to buckle himself in while we're driving in the car. One day Peter Pan was flying outside the car, following us apparently. I opened the window to let him in, and then of course, Fiona made sure that I buckled him in properly---lucky it was before the light changed. The make believe play is amazing, unending, with limitless possibilities. Need to get to the grocery store, the salon, or the bike shop? Have biddy-pink stroller, will travel. Don't have any money? "Here's some purple money, mom!" Need a cake? She bakes one of colored agates and old Mardi Gras beads. Another tip: for stirring-pouring-baking in the play kitchen, cheap bead strands make for great cooking accessories, plus they're colorful which makes awesome cupcakes.

Newly considering Homeschooling and part time work. Although, eyeballing the next Training Plan, it seems that I'll need to magic some new hours into the day, I think if I could just get an extra 4 hours, make a 16 hour day/night instead of 12, that would just be peachy. With the time change this weekend maybe there'll me more time as well as daylight? Hmm.

Friday, February 27, 2009

The Day She Ate Cake...

...for breakfast. Well it was Valentine's Day weekend, I purchased these lovely heart shaped cakes to celebrate. One would have fed at least 3 people, 2 chocolate, 2 vanilla, moist single-layer, covered with an fondant-like icing...so I bought 4. We love our sweets in this house, Gary and I both awoke with sugar hangovers the following morning. Of course though there was cake left over for breakfast, what better way to start the day than with cake and coffee? None, I say! Little Girl proceeded to tear her way through about 1/4 cake, "Be Mine" smeared on her face.

Then we decided a visit to the Nature & Science Museum would be fun. Delusions abound with any kind of hangover. Under-slept Toddleator + cake breakfast + public arena + random small children = disaster. How appropriate that we visited the "Nature Unleashed" exhibit. Technically the adventure started in the Gem & Minerals when I witnessed the child acting rather territorial around another toddler, we evacuated the area and moved on. Now it's fair to note that we didn't take the normal course of action, explaining the where, the how, what's expected of Fiona before we venture anywhere. This mistake just set up the rest of the morning. While spiriting through Earthquakes Fiona is unruly, upon reaching Tsunamis she's pushing the limits, when we hit the Hurricanes she's entirely outta control. This culminated in shoving another little girl into a structure. I didn't actually see what happened. I turned in time to see the smaller girl bump/bounce off the exhibit post and fall. I don't think she was hurt, as she didn't cry, I'm apologetic to the mother. Fiona stood tall, I knelt and asked Fiona if she had indeed pushed the other little person, "Yesss" was the reply. Immediately, calmly, I said, "We're leaving," picked up my offspring and with Gary trailing slightly behind, we walked swiftly from the area. Once, at The Man's askance we tried to stop and get some snack into her, but there was no going back. The flailing had begun, the "NOoooo, I dooon't waaant (you-name-it)", hitting at what Gary offered, yelling at top of lungs....and we're done. She fought the car-seat, hollered all the way back to the house, eventually in her bed she slept, and post-nap it was as if nothing happened. Talk about natural disaster!

Funny thing the weekend prior we had a nice time at the museum, and when we were waiting for Little Girl to say bye-bye to the bronze wolves out front, we witnessed a tantruming toddler tossed over the shoulder of an exasperated---yet smiling---father. We return smiles with empathy and acknowledgment, you are not alone.
She had been pretty cranky in the last few weeks, waking at weird hours, just generally on edge. I noticed some new molars while brushing teeth the other night---teething! Which makes total sense, now that I think about it. Her behavior is right in line with how she 'handled' teething as an infant---except she's bigger, stronger, talks, and is much more expressive.

I'm still triathlon training, getting the volumes up proper before starting the Half Iron Man plan in March. My races are June, July, & August. I'm excited already!

So Sad! :(

Friday, February 6, 2009

this is the inferno...

Welcome to Planet Tantrum. Please refrain from speaking to the Toddleator under ANY circumstances, other than to say "I love you, so sad you're having a tough time." Any other interaction is ill advised as it could result in a random foot/arm/hand/leg-to-face contact. Be aware, also, that screaming is perfectly normal---in fact, expected---at this stage of meltdown. It will sound as if someone is injuring the toddler, it will sound as if she hates you and everything you've ever said, done, implied, attempted, cared for, wanted, loved, or eaten. If the phrenetic line of thought seems psycotic, that's because it IS. Items, situations, food, that are loooong past in the toddler timeline will be resurrected in order to continue the hellacious harangue. Remember too, that not everyone surrounding the scene has children, not everyone will understand that it is in fact a normal growing pain for small children. People with children will offer sympathetic smiles, people without children will move away in horror. This is not personal, it is simply that childless persons generally don't carry that innate parental compassion.

There will come a time on Planet Tantrum where you will see 2 choices, as I have:
1) allow frustration to overwhelm the normally tolerant parental instinct, in which the only road leads to violence in some form or other
2) LAUGH, chuckle, flex the jaw, breathe very deeply, and repeat " 'This too shall pass'...please, god-the-universe, Oh, please-please-please...'This too shall pass.' "
I think it's kind of silly to become SO frustrated, she is so small, everything is SO new, the emotions are SO intense....what would happen if someone treated me badly just because I happen to have a bad day?

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

When Grandparents Visit

The Grandparents Bowman Unit visited early this month, and it was really nice. Fiona was SO excited she could hardly eat with them around. Added bonus that when grandparents visit, they bring PRESENTS! Ever since there have been tea parties and lots of galloping-snorting-whinnying around the house. Fiona & I enjoyed the Aquarium & sight-seeing with Gramma & Granpa. Then the bonus of the authentic British Tea House & Restaurant at Hilltop Inn---my first time for true Yorkshire Pudding! A gem of a place!

Thank you to my parents for the gifts and taking the effort to bring ALL the remainder of my possessions up to Colorado. It's bizarre having previous lives collide in the current time continuum. I really can't explain it, it's traumatic in a healthy, healing way. I completed the initial reorganization & perusal. Must've thought somehow that I would return to unpack in a relative short time, based on some things I kept, but that's not what happened. Now I need to get most of it put in storage properly again, catalogued mentally, rid myself of what is rotten or of no real use anymore. Most of it was packed exactly as I left it, only one box casualty of a Texas rodent.
What an enlightening experience to see what I thought was important as a child, as a college student/first marriage, as a young professional & single person. Now, other than historical record, I'm trying to redefine its use. It seems I was searching for my relevance to the universe, keeping strict records in lots of journals. Now that I have found relevance in life to date, the rest is ancient history, impotent information. Since all is impermanent , no Thing lasts, I'll purge a majority of this 'stuff' and keep only poignant keepsakes, possibly interesting to our offspring should they ever be curious. A men tal "house" cleaning, how appropriate at this New Year time, how amazing that it all culminates exactly when it should....god-the-universe is watching.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Early year doldrums

Ho-Hum the dol-drumms. This is the time of year when the post holiday doldrums set in. I feel somewhat restless, want to travel, probably just suffering some withdrawals from all the holiday treats. Not much to do other than plug along day to day. Traditionally the slowest time of the year for retail and restaurant industries ('cause I used to work for them). Maybe that's why Valentine's Day has become such a commercialized "holiday"? Desperate retailers trying to inject a little more cash post holiday, pre-memorial day?

Every now and then I think about getting a part time job, but mostly what I want to do would involve a certification, or more education, so it's all sort of in limbo. I've attempted to get a couple part time jobs, but so far no one is interested in my long past service industry experience, or my more recent over-/under-qualifications. Now I am in that gray area, too experienced for this one, not mastered enough for the other one. Give it up to god-the-universe, it must have something else planned for me.

Fiona has a fever today, 101.5 topped out when the medication has worn off, I'm still considering taking her to the doc. Fevers don't bode well for social interaction, so we're house-bound for the most part, no gym-time for me until Gary is home from work. I've a looong workout today, and I hate to miss 'em since I've signed up for the 5430 Series. I tend to give myself a hard time missing workouts, it's early yet though---I have to remember that. Maybe I'll get some housework done? *snerk* No really, I do need to get some housework done, and I will....soon. Plus there's the other pork-ham-roast-thing from The Colossal Christmas Shank I plan to roast today. Fiona's not too bad off, her behavior is next to normal, she's a bit listless with the fever, but certainly hasn't lost the knack for tantrum-ing in proper form, her appetite is fine, and fluid intake appears normal. Hence, my being on the fence regarding trekking to the doc---it's just a fever. (knock on wood)

The other day we put Bark Butter on the trees out back (Thank You Miss M!). ONE fat squirrel ate ALL of it I think---very possibly the same squirrel that munched on the dinosaur (see archive). The birds hardly got any it seemed. Little Girl got a kick outta spreading it on the tree, and hung around the back door for a while watching the critters attempt to sneak some tasties from The Fat One. There's a bit more, maybe butter the trees again today.
So it goes. :D