Tuesday, February 21, 2012

#makesmesmilemondays breakfast out, little helping hands in the kitchen, and good friends

I missed my #makesmesmilemondays post yesterday, but here are three things that not only made me smile last week, but always make me smile: breakfast out, little helping hands in the kitchen, and good friends

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Friday, February 17, 2012

Follow Friday: Three Not-So-Ordinary-Mom Blogs I Follow

Here are three not-so-ordinary mom blogs that I like to follow:

No Longer Quivering http://nolongerquivering.com
Vyckie Garrison started her blog to share with readers her disillusionment and eventually, escape, from the Quiverful movement.

Big Mamma Hollers http://www.thebodiebunch.blogspot.com/
Cindy describes herself as a 57-year-old happily single mother of 39 young'uns. Yes - you read that correctly - she has 39 children.

Simply Bike http://simplybikeblog.com/ reminds me how much I love riding my bike!

Do you follow a not-so-ordinary mom blog?

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Monday, February 13, 2012

#makesmesmilemondays Happy Valentine's Day!

My daughter, Cupid for the Day
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That love is all there is, Is all we know of love.  ~Emily Dickinson

Monday, February 6, 2012


My kids at el circo cheapo on Saturday night
There is an 8 year age gap between my two kids. They have different fathers. My son's little sister arrived just as he was setting out on the tween years. I worried that because of those three factors, they wouldn't have bonded as much as siblings closer in age.
Instead, their loving brother sister relationship only warms my heart. They don't fight over toys; neither seeks the attention spotlight over the other. They enjoy spending time with one another and oh boy, can they make one another laugh! I think the high point of Chiara's day is when Daniel spins here around the room - she calls this "Di-do-do".

I always remind my son that when he's sixteen, she'll be 8, so he better be ready to take her on lots of car rides for ice cream cones when he gets his driver's license. And then, can you just imagine what a relief it would have been/be to have a brother 8 years older than you to call up for boy advice/college application assistance/moving help??? I know that Chiara will repay her brother too, someday, at least for all those "Di-do-do" spins around the living room.

Watching this brother/sister duo in action always makes me smile.
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Saturday, February 4, 2012

just let go

Reposted from July 2010

This past weekend, at a memorial service for my Aunt, the priest shared his experience witnessing the birth of a child. He noted that he hadn't imagined, until witnessing firsthand, the amount of pushing and pain that it takes to get a baby out into this world. It was, he explained, as if the child were protesting (as they all seem to do): I'm perfectly comfy in here and I have no idea what's out there, so I'm staying put! Ha! 

He likened this to death. That since none of us can know what's involved in the great beyond, all we can seem to muster is understandably fear and apprehension when it comes to even contemplating death. But that, like the baby, we must find within us that bridge of faith, someone who would stand by our side and see us through: who, in the baby's case would be all those that shower him with constant love, affection and care.For us adults, it would be the Universe, a higher power, God, God expressed through the words, gentle action and care of those who love us. 
Of course I thought of my own kids: both were reluctant about entering this crazy world.Fratellone, it seemed, wanted nothing more than to live inside me forever, enjoying the Tesco Swiss Rolls and the Hagen Daaz midnight dark chocolate ice cream. Even after a ride on the top of a rickety double-decker bus and several jerky Tube rides, sex (feeling like an elephant, I might add), curries, cups and cups of raspberry leaf tea, many, many walks around London - he just wouldn't budge - and he was two days late already. It reached the point that I finally just collapsed into a ball of tears, wondering, in my raging hormonally induced state, if this baby thing really would ever happen at all. 
The same with Pupa. With her, I tried all of the above, as well as swimming and "membrane stripping' - but not even that could get her to take even the slightest step in the birthday direction. She was due the 22nd but was instead born on the 24th. Whereas Fratellone made the snap decision, Oh well, may as well..., popped his water bag and came out fast and furious, Pupa had to be induced. A slow dripping pitocin began and for an hour, she seemed to say, No. You can't make me do it. No. No. No. You'll see! as both of our hearts beat steady and slow, until the pitocin was cranked up and she had no other choice. AlrightFine then! + excruciating pain + a few pushes on my part - and there she was, ready to live her life. 
Even babies when they let out that first piercing cry - with their smashed up faces and super pissed off expressions - they really do seem to be yowling, I didn't want to have to do that. Why did you evict meWhhyyyNo fair!!!. Until finally they recognize that indeed there are cozy arms to hold me here, gentle voices no longer so muffled, pleasant, familiar smells, something warm and sweet to drink, and well, they just must sense that everything is going to be okay, or at least we'll try our best! through the beaming smiles and wide-eyed joy, even if they can't see or exactly understand. 
I wish I had the faith to believe 100% that there is indeed a heaven. I hope (when I am a grey-haired centenarian, great-grandma to several) that I will indeed possess that bridge of faith that will carry me into whatever comes next with dignity and the sense of a life well lived. 
I do believe 100% that there is someone showing me the way - who I choose to call God. There have been times in life when I too was scared to let go and follow whatever it was that was laid out before me. How much easier it would have been had I just let go and taken a deep breath, Okay. Here I am. What's next?

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