Monday, October 6, 2014

What We’ve Been Up to Lately and Other Revelations

Happy October to ya! We have been on the go all month long already, so much so, that I kept skipping over the weekend of the 18th like it doesn’t even exist. I guess I really just want my friend’s party on the 25th to get here! I have been working diligently on my homemade costume and hubs is working on his too! As you recall Emma has fallen into the Elsa costume trap but I’m cool with whatever makes her happy and hey, it saves me from making another costume (although for the record I would make her whatever costume she wanted cause making fun costumes is kinda my thing.)  Anywho onto our Fall adventures:

We went apple picking! And then I went apple baking!
 




Soccer has been going well…for the first ten minutes of each practice anyway. See that playground in the background...apparently that is more appealing to half the kids on the "team" as they end up over there more often than not. Last Saturday 3 of the 6 kids at practice decided to make a break for it and there was no turning back. Guess who was one of the kids...


Emma met her little cousin for the first time! She went from curious to excited to unsure (while mommy (me) was holding the baby) but I think ultimately she decided her cousin is cool. I cannot wait to see these two grow up together and go to teenybopper concerts and the mall together!



We went to a Fall Festival in the next town over where Emma and daddy had a blast on all of the bouncy equipment. If you look closely it looks like Emma has a momentary look of panic on her face but let me assure you she was very upset when she found out her turn was over.


Finally, we went to my friend’s farm for her birthday where Emma spent probably 3 hours straight running around their big open yard with her new friend Evan and two yellow labs (she called them both Bella of course.) 


 Besides just getting out and about for some fun, I’ve been a lot more productive since swearing off letting things out of my control get me down. I have been cleaning and reorganizing the house. We’ve done several “purges” so far, but the “great purge” is yet to come…the attic… I’m not even sure I can bring myself to take before pictures of the space, but if I am feeling particularly vulnerable then I will share them. Here’s a quick look at Emma’s “playroom” (aka our old dining room – if you are wondering this is how the space previously looked before the onslaught of toys) reorg. 



I am really working hard to enjoy and care for the space I have to call home at this point in my life. At the same time, our family is working hard to move forward in the grand scheme of things. Literal blood, sweat, and tears are going into our small successes and you know, sometimes that makes crossing the finish line that much sweeter.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

A Halloween Costume Explanation

There she stood, on the crossroads of a decision that could ultimately decide a big chunk of her fate. The decision was either or, one or the other. An unmistakable line was drawn between one side and the other. One side sparkled, the other, held promise. It was her second time in this place. Confusion and desperation engulfed the time sensitive matter. Based on several factors, once the decision was made, there could be no going back. It was absolute. 

Have you found yourself in this situation? I sure have…it’s called the costume isle at the store.  You might recall from my earlier post that I have been enjoying gender neutral bliss with my child. The store however is designed to deconstruct my happily constructed gender neutrality. It’s a dangerous place.  Somewhere along the way, I realized that Emma is old enough to pick out her costume this year (after all she is certainly capable of voicing her opinion whenever she gets the chance.) So I  took her to the costume isle a few weeks back, picked up a few choice pieces, and “gently held them up for her to inspect” read: dislocated my shoulder from fist pumping colorful cloth around in the air like a fabric obsessed lunatic screaming “look at this one sweeeetie!” (This is how I roll through life so hopefully my kid can deal with it!) Emma was having none of it. In fact, she was more excited about not being strapped in her stroller which she celebrated by running off. The second time yielded similar results only instead of running off, she was more enamored with the Christmas displays (I knooooow). She grabbed a huge (expensive) fluffy white bear and was pretty pleased with herself for scoping out such a treasure. Thomas and I convinced her to put the bear “back with her family” on the shelf. So, a $40 impulse buy was diverted but we had no forward movement in the costume selection department. 

I kept asking Emma what she wanted to be but I didn’t get much of a tangible response. She would just kind of look at me sideways like I’m nuts (which, well duh) but still I needed some sort of answer! I finally came up with a costume theme for myself and Thomas this year so I racked my brain for something I thought Emma would enjoy wearing, like really enjoy. I want her to get that childhood skip in her step, that twinkle in her eye, that evil look of “if you dare think of taking this off me I will cut you” when she put son her costume. There were only two costumes I thought would meet all of those criteria. One was a dinosaur costume, one of her new favorite things, the other….an Elsa costume. Yes, yes I KNOW! the sparkliest dress ever. I seriously endured way more anxiety over the decision than was necessary. I knew if I chose the Elsa dress what I would be…an enabler….that before you know it I would be dressing Emma up for Toddlers in Tiaras, swigging go-go juice, and eventually shelling out 20 grand for a wedding dress like those crazy parents do on tv! <--this is how my anxieties play out in my mind if you were ever wondering. 

After much more debate and several hundred requests to watch Frozen over the past few weeks, I caved…my child will wear a Halloween costume this year with ZERO originality but I think she just might be ok with that.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Soccer Mom Part Deux



I know what you are thinking; you flipped through your mental rolodex to remember this little post. So what the heck am I doing back in soccer mom status? Well, all pushy type-A parenting aside, I actually just wanted a scheduled activity that made sure we got out of the house for something other than running errands on weekends. So far we’ve had 3 “practices” with varying results.

The first practice was a throw back to last year’s terrible experience. After about ten minutes, Emma made it clear that she was not happy. In fact, she threw a huge tantrum that lasted half of the day. I pulled her over to the sidelines for a few minutes after the start to see if she would calm down. I even promised ice cream…ICE CREAM people…nothing. When I realized this would not be short lived I packed up and thus started the week long dread for the following Saturday. This time around though Emma has a better understanding of things and I was able to talk with her over the course of the week to encourage her for the following Saturday. Well it turns out I came down with a cold and missed the next Saturday. Her dad took her and low and behold not only did they stay the whole time, she had fun and even followed directions! If you know any two year old that is huge. Now granted, daddy might have stretched the truth just a little bit but I knew I would find out when week 3 came around.

Last weekend finally came and what I saw was amazing and wonderful. Emma actually paid attention and had fun doing the activities. Granted she did lose interest a few times and we ended up leaving about ten minutes early but still, I was encouraged that she actually listen to the coach and kicked the ball around. I am hopeful that she will find at least one sport she enjoys since both her father and I were athletes. If she decides to be a book worm that is fine too but there is really something inclusive and fun about participating in sports (ok that’s it for my sports psa I promise). But I will be scouring the web for my soccer mom suv magnet so be warned :)

Here’s to hoping for a fun rest of the season and an equally successful round of gymnastics in the winter. I hope no matter what activities you have planned, that you and your family enjoy this fall season! I am making sure we get out as much as possible before dreaded winter takes over. 


Spectacular



I am doing this new thing where I throw all caution to the wind. You see I came to the realization that I was boxed in; or rather I had boxed myself in. After a long and difficult summer and generally living a life where I am always waiting for the other shoe to drop, I seem to have slowly started shutting off my ability to accept and even seek out happiness. I’m a hard person to crack a smile to begin with but nothing this summer was penetrating my foreboding existence. This summer delivered quite a blow and the devastation just keeps on coming. 

I wasn’t able to share this earlier, but a lot of what caused my summer gloom and doom was financial loss. Here we were, set to take on the world, ready to buy a house and even dive into the early stages of planning to expand our family and suddenly we were hit with a major financial blow. It is very complicated and I really don’t want to hash out all of the grim details here, not to mention the long, complicated process is not over. I potentially have months of waiting and fighting and misery ahead of me.

After a few months of embracing the lowest of lows, I am ready to soar the highest of highs! This is my life damn it! I will not sit idly by and let the universe crush my dreams. I’m not new to the whole “bust my ass to get what I deserve” thing. So, I’m taking on extra work where I can (hey if you’re looking for some of my Pearly Words I am available for hire as a part-time writer/ editor!) More importantly, my family will be moving forward with the plans we had before the devastating news. We are going to hopefully find a house and possibly even look to expand! Yes, the struggle will be super real, in fact we will have to work like we’re in our 20s again but those were some of my best times.


More importantly from all of this, I am embracing the smallest bits of happiness I find. Suddenly events and announcements that seemed totally lackluster are exciting and full of possibility! I’m even letting myself laugh at those dry jokes on tv and avidly seeking out any small form of joy I can. I am loving and laughing and living my life. I want my life lived to be spectacular. Thank you for the inspiration Robin.
If you would like me to sum this up in musical form, here you go.