Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Story of the Day...

Storypeople posts a random story every day on Facebook.  Today was one of my favorites.  We printed this story on the wedding invitations I handmade.


he followed the sun & she followed the stars & in dreams they listened closely for the beginning of all things, for that was where they knew they'd find each other

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

new projects

For my birthday… my best friend Vicki gave me a gift card to Purl Soho.  I was so excited to order some fun things.  They arrived just the other day…

Inside this cute little package...

This yarn is amazing!  I posted about wanting to make a blanket out of it here.  I think first, I will tackle a scarf.  Going to start this weekend.  I cannot wait!

Closer look...

Also tucked in the package was one yard of liberty of london fabric...

I have been drooling over this fabric forever.  I am going to use part of it to cover a magnet board for my office.  Now that I know I’m staying (after almost 4 years) I think I’ll decorate my office J

I wish I knew how to sew clothes… it would make a beautiful something-to-wear.  The fabric is sooooo soft.  A skirt maybe?  I can do the basics, but I think clothing is beyond my skill level.

Anyway… I love it.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Rationalizing with the Irrational

Toddlers make no sense.

Lily has been great with Gracie.  I would even say wonderful.  She loves her sister and up until Friday night, there have been no issues of jealousy.

Then it happened.  It was post-bath, everyone get on their pjs in Lily’s room, time.  I grabbed a pair for Gracie that was one of my favorites that Lily used to wear.  They had mermaids on them.  I made a comment about how cute the mermaids were and Lily lost it.  Completely lost it.  She wanted to wear the mermaid pjs.  I didn’t even know that she knew what mermaids were. 

Jeff and I switched and he took over dressing Gracie while I calmly tried to rationalize with Lily.  

I started with empathizing: I understand you are upset and that you really want to wear the mermaid pjs but…

I explained in simple terms: those pjs are way too small for you…

I tried to use a visual: here are the same pjs in a different print – try to put them on – see? You can’t even get your arm in there!

It didn’t matter.  She cried and threw a fit.  She refused to put on any other pjs.  Finally she got cold and wore herself out and we got dressed in frogs and went to bed crashed.

Fits are new too.  Up until maybe a few weeks ago, Lily never really threw fits.  She cried like all kids do, but never for very long.  Now she has begun to throw fits.  She cries.  Hard.  And becomes even more irrational to the point where you just have to let her sit by herself and get it out.  When she calms down, we usually move on and do whatever it was she didn’t want to do in the first place with no issue… like eat dinner.  

She has also stopped napping during the days when she isn’t home with us.  She has figured out that Grandma can’t stand to hear her cry, so if she cries enough, she doesn’t have to nap.  Awesome.  I believe the fits are related to the lack of naps.  I’m not a genius, but I feel pretty good about that assumption.

I’m working on letting it go.  On not trying to constantly rationalize with someone who is irrational.  Wish me luck.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The end of the internet

Do you ever hop on to the internet to “just check one quick thing” only to look up several hours later and realize you absolutely have to stop and get back to work whatever you are supposed to be doing… after you just look at one more…

You see where this is going.  

I love the internet and I hate the internet.  I am so easily distracted sometimes that I find myself with 15 open pages and 95 more that I want to open and read.  I find projects I want to do, recipes I want to make, hairstyles I want to have, clothes I want to buy, blogs I want to read.  There are great new tools to help you organize all this… pinterest, evernote, etc. that I LOVE.  But while I love them, they make it worse.  These days, I think it’s even easier to get pulled in a million directions at once by things I “just have to look at real quick.”  I have just started using Pinterest and have gotten so distracted just opening the site that I've given up each time before I even pin anything!

This causes me anxiety, sometimes a lot of anxiety.  I completely admit that the prior statement sounds ridiculous.  But am I alone?  Does anyone else feel easily overwhelmed by the possibilities vs. lack of time?  By all the amazing and inspirational blogs?  By endless ideas and creativity?  I love it and I hate it.

Once upon a time I had a job where I was really busy in spurts.  The rest of the time I had nothing to do.  This was a long time ago.  I was not on Facebook… Facebook didn’t exist (technically it did, but no one was using it yet).  I remember I had the same habit of starting in one place on the internet and ending up somewhere completely off track.  However, there was one day, after a really long spurt of down time, where I honestly couldn’t think of one more thing to look up/read about.  I declared to my office mates (one of which is now my husband…) that I had officially found the end of the internet.  We all had a good laugh.

What I wouldn’t give for a day like that now.  Nothing to do but get lost on the internet?  Sign me up!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012


So clearly, it has been some time since I’ve written here on this blog.  I have heard myself say many times in the past ten years… “life just gets in the way.”  I’ve used those words as an excuse for a number of things… not keeping up with friends and family, not taking care of myself, not taking time to do the things I’d like to do most.  But the past 6 months (has it really been that long??) have given an all new meaning to life gets in the way.

At the risk of boring everyone who reads to tears… I will give a short and condensed version of the events of the past few months:

  • Jeff’s dad needed major heart surgery to replace one valve and repair another at the beginning of September – he was in the hospital till mid October with many complications
  • My dad needed surgery to open his severely blocked carotid artery in September as well (the day I was supposed to fly to California for a conference – thank you Delta for accommodating my flight changes)
  • I went to San Francisco for that conference and it was hot and I walked too much and I learned travelling at 32 weeks pregnant it just too much
  • I found out my job was being restructured and I would have to reapply for my position in December – while I was on maternity leave
  • Jeff’s dad finally came home from the hospital
  • Lily turned 2 on October 11th and I threw a party for her – 9 months pregnant – I fell asleep in the middle of it
  • Jeff found out through some xrays that led to MRIs that he has severe spinal stenosis and that we would need to consult a neurosurgeon about options
  • We met with a neurosurgeon only to be told there is nothing we can do to fix it and please avoid any and all trauma to your back – we were referred to U of M for a second opinion (still waiting on that)
  • Two days later I had a csection (instead of the normal labor I had planned) and delivered our beautiful, healthy little Gracie Belle
  • Three days after Christmas, we were told Jeff’s white and red blood counts were low and that we would need to consult with an oncologist
  • January 9th, we met with an oncologist who gave us peace of mind that we need not worry about Jeff’s levels and to have them tested again in a year
  • I found out I get to keep my job

Throughout all of this, I have been wanting to blog about it, wanting to get it all out there.  But where do you start when things just keep piling up?  Where do you begin to talk about all of this?  It felt overwhelming.  For the longest time it felt like a little black storm cloud had just settled itself over our home. So I just kept procrastinating… it’s what I do.  But I’m done.  Things are turning around.  Jeff’s dad is doing much better.  It’s been a long road, but he is feeling better and they are watching the girls again.  My dad is doing great.  Much more energy since the surgery and is getting around a bit better.  Gracie has been the easiest, most wonderful baby ever.  I had a short maternity leave and on the night before I went back to work she decided to start sleeping through the night.  We haven’t been up with her once during the night since.  She sleeps for 8 hours straight.  I love her.  Lily is an obstinate toddler… but she surprised me with Gracie.  She isn’t jealous and she loves her sister.  And – it took two days to potty train her.  Yes, I said 2 days.  I couldn’t believe it either.

As for Jeff, we are waiting to get our appointment with U of M.  But whatever we have to do, we will and we will get through it.  There are few things that scare you more than being told you (or your spouse) need to meet with an oncologist… and oh, by the way, wait two weeks to see him.  Your mind goes to a million horrible places.  You try to be strong and you try go on with your day to day tasks and work without getting distracted by the “what ifs.”  Sometimes you do a really good job of not thinking about it and other times it hits you like a brick wall.  But when you walk out of that oncologist’s office after being told you don’t need to come back any time soon if not ever again, you look around.  You see all the people who don’t get to hear those words.  You say a prayer for them and you say a quiet thank you.  And you go have a martini to celebrate. 

Over the past couple of weeks, I feel like that cloud has started to dissipate.  There may even be some sunlight starting to shine.  The past six months have challenged me to keep perspective.  To remember that even through all this stress, things are not that bad.  They are not more than I can handle and they will get better.  They are getting better.  The irony of my last blog post does not escape me.  There is exactly enough time for the important things in life.  Now to catch up on all those blogs I meant to write…

ps – Thank you to those that have listened and been there with a hug or a glass bottle of wine.  It means more than you know and I am so very grateful.