Tuesday, November 27, 2012

For so much I am thankful

I all but completely dropped the ball on my 30 Days of Thanks posts due to one of the busiest weeks of my life since my wedding. With Thanksgiving and my parents' 50th wedding anniversary party only two days apart, there were tasks to be accomplished, projects to be completed, and out of town guests to visit. Needless to say I am beyond thankful for every last bit of it. My goal is to catch up on posts in the next couple of days but the truth is I am still in decompression mode.
p.s. Why is it that the older I get the harder it is to take a decent photo? Seriously, I can not remember the last time I looked even remotely decent in a picture. Sheesh. I try not to be overly critical of myself, but I can't help of think of that episode of Friends where Chandler and Monica are taking  photos and he looks like he is being poked by needles in every single one. I am Chandler. And I am off to practice angled chin poses right now.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

11.19 & 20.12

Today I am grateful my internet is working again.

Yesterday I was thankful all day that it was only a two day work week.

Such little things, both of them, but both brought much needed tranquility at the beginning of a very busy week.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Out with the tide

Last Monday, after a rough morning, we loaded the boys up and headed down the coast to get our minds off of things. After a nice lunch in Coron del Mar albeit a tad stressful as small restaurants with rambunctious boys can be we made our way to the tide pools in Laguna Beach. The chill in the air made for one of those great days where you go to the beach for less than an hour, kick off your shoes, and simply roll up your pants. In retrospect, maybe a towel or an extra pair of pants for the boys would have been nice. Though Anderson in his undies is still one of the cutest things I have ever seen so it really was no big deal.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

11.18 & 19.12

Yesterday I was so exhausted that although I really, truly did think about that for which I was grateful, I just didn't have it in me to actually get it written.

Yesterday I was grateful for the couple of hours of kid and husband-free time I had to actually tackle a couple of party projects. It's amazing how much I can accomplish in less than 3 hours when there is nobody around! Surely that makes me sound like a bad mom and wife, but I am totally OK with it. Because spray adhesive and little boys do not mix.

Today I am thankful for a couple of things: that sweet spot on my pillow this morning that was the perfect mix of cool crisp cotton and fluffy down where I felt I could hold my head forever (until a certain little boy knuckled me in the side of the head anyway); a very productive day in terms of party projects even with aforementioned little guy helping to spray paint and "gently apply the glitter" oh my gosh how does the lid just happen to fall off the bottle when in his little hands?!; and finally, I am forever thankful that my dad taught me how to make the best spaghetti sauce. Seriously, so easy and so good. Which also, I guess, makes me thankful that I don't have to be one of those people who buys pasta sauce in a jar. 

Friday, November 16, 2012


Today I am thankful for a sister that thinks like I do. Togther we dream big, chat too much, and accomplish too little.

Thursday, November 15, 2012


Today I am grateful for the little bit of free time I have between the time the boys go to bed and the time I do. It is never quite as much as I need, but surely it is more than I deserve.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The best and worst kind of day

Monday was such a dichotomy of days. A day off from work, gorgeous weather, and happy kids only served as a distraction from the heaviness that weighed upon me as I had to say goodbye to my sweet kitty. I am not ordinarily a very sentimental person when it comes to animals, but this was hard. I got Chachi at 3 weeks old, just a couple of weeks before my first teaching job. He lived with me in multiple houses and was around long before my husband. He was so like me in every way- loving when he wanted and stand-offish much of the time, more than content to be alone, and always around when you needed him. He gave of himself on his own terms. He was not the snuggly, in-your-face, lay-in-your-lap kind of cat I had always wanted, but he was so perfectly mine. When he fell sick a year ago I knew it was only a matter of time before things would progress. Lately he had simply been too weak and too sick to do anything. He was miserable. I know the decision we made was the right one and though we miss him I know that his quality of life was a punishment these last couple of weeks.

Situations like this are inevitable. I know that. Many will be the times that I will be faced with difficult decisions and the even more excruciating task of explaining such decisions to my kids. It's all a part of the deal. I can only hope that I will always be surrounded by the love of my family to ease the pain that I sometimes am not even aware exists just barely beneath the surface.


Today I am thankful for the amazing sunrise that started my day. Up until a week and a half ago I missed the sunrise every morning because I arrived at work before even the slightest hint of it could be seen. Since the time change, however, my mornings have been a little more inspired.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012


Today I am especially thankful for Rosa who takes such amazing care of the boys on Tuesdays. I will never understand how she can accomplish in one day what takes me a week in this house.

Monday, November 12, 2012


Today, though my heart is heavy, I am especially grateful for the 13+ years I had with my big orange kitty Chachi. What a tough morning.

Sunday, November 11, 2012


Today I am thankful for those who serve our country. No sacrifice is greater than that made by so many to protect our freedom and defend our country.

And, finally, Halloween

Halloween was pretty fabulous this year. There is something to be said for the first time your baby goes up to a house all by himself, knocks on the door, and says "trick or treat" that is overwhelmingly heart-melting. It was too cute for words, really. 
We were fortunate that the boys got to wear their costumes earlier in the week for a test run at Grandma's office trick-or-treating party before the big night as Beck clearly needed some time to warm up to the idea of sporting plumage. Once they were dressed, however, all was well and aside from Anderson's hot head and Beck's bothersome owl eyes, things went off without a hitch.
We spent our evening as we have every Halloween since having kids- walking the streets of simply the most fabulous Halloween neighborhood ever. This year's theme was Wizard of Oz and it did not disappoint, though my terrible pictures do it nothing close to justice. Somehow we began our journey in Oz and worked our way backward, though even in reverse it was pretty fantastic. With everything from flying monkeys on zip lines to numerous Dorothies acting out individual scenes, the whole story was brought to life from beginning to end or from end to beginning as it were, reminding me that it has been much too long since I have sat down and actually watched the movie. The night ended with much too much candy, sensory overload, and two very sleepy little guys.
 It's amazing how much I have grown to love this holiday over the last few years. To be able to experience such things through the ayes of your child is something remarkable. My heart swells and yet I become anxious as I think about the profound impact that the memories we are creating will one day have on my boys. With each passing year our actions have become traditions and we have created something all our own. Funny how that happens without even the smallest of intentions, really.  
Now that Halloween has passed and the decorations have been stashed away we are enjoying the little bit of rest and relaxation that exist in the couple of weeks between holidays. The weather is cool, the evenings much darker, and the anticipation of the next big day so great we can hardly contain ourselves. 

A little note so as to never forget: Anderson was the same thing last year. No amount of convincing would get him to change his mind. He had other options which he briefly entertained (a pirate, a turtle, a homemade robot), but in the end the nearly too small pincher bug won out. A creature of comfort, that boy is. I'm placing my bet now that Beck will be a bug next year as well. Thank goodness it's cute.


I am especially thankful for Saturday nights on the couch with my husband, Thai take-out and Mad Men. The most perfect kind of evening.

Friday, November 9, 2012


Today I am feeling thankful for the crisp fall air that has finally arrived! It is just the inspiration I need to get in the spirit around here.

Thursday, November 8, 2012


I am thankful for the drive-thru at Starbucks that allowed me to stay dry as I got my coffee on my way to work this morning.


Today I am thankful for the influence and control I still have over my young boys. Gabe and I were fortunate to go to a screening of the heart-wrenching documentary Bully tonight and were made painfully aware of the reality that exists when you send your kids out into the world.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

And so we walked

It was just over 2 years ago at the age of 4 when Sully was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes and life as he and the family knew it forever changed. He is one strong little boy, that nephew of mine. Though things have become more routine and many questions have been answered, I'm not sure that it will ever be much easier for Sully. I love that boy through and through and I could not have been more honored to join his tream and walk to raise money in support of a cure for this awful disease. Team Sully proudly raised over $2000 this year and together we showed one little boy just how much he is loved and supported.


Today I am thankful for my freedom, for my right to vote, and for my tiny voice being heard.

Monday, November 5, 2012


Today I am thankful for the public library. So much for all of us and all for free. On a related note: I am not overly thankful, however, that today Anderson insisted on checking out a book entitled  "Where is Grandpa?" about a boy who loses his grandpa. I am crossing everything I've got to keep him from asking questions about that one.

Pumpkin Cookies

I know it exists- that perfect combination of oatmeal, pumpkin, and chocolate chips all wrapped up in a sufficiently dense, perfectly puffed and slightly crunchy, yet not-too-sweet cookie; I just have yet to find it. So far I've tried two recipes and, while good, they just aren't it. As a matter of fact, I cannot remember the last time I actually threw a couple of cookies away because they didn't get eaten; not because they were bad, they just weren't good enough to justify the calories. The first was too moist and flat and the second (in the pictures), while better, was just not as dense as I had hoped for. Later this week I am going to take matters into my own hands and try modifying my own chocolate chip recipe to see if it yields better results. Because there is nothing wrong with trying out cookie recipes until you get right. Baby Beck clearly agrees.

Sunday, November 4, 2012


So very thankful for those who donated money and walked along side us this morning to support little Sully in his fight against type 1 diabetes.

Saturday, November 3, 2012


Thankful for date night, the babysitter, and a baby that stayed asleep the whole time we were away.

Friday, November 2, 2012


Today I am most thankful for a three-year-old who said, "Mommy, I love this place!" while in the waiting room at the doctor's office (I don't think I've ever met a kid who loves going to the doctor as much as he does!). I am even more thankful for stronger antibiotics and a positive diagnosis of improvement.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

For so much I am thankful

In so many ways I make it a point to avoid doing things that everyone else does simply because, well, everyone else does them. I suppose it is the loaner who still lives inside of me. Regardless, there are some things that supersede my silly idiosyncrasies for the sheer fact that they do, in fact, serve to make me a better person.

Being thankful is certainly not something I struggle with, but it is something that I so often do not take the time to contemplate on a daily basis. As a matter of fact I am fairly certain the last time I wrote in my gratitude journal was some time in 2009. And so I will join so many others and make the effort each and every day this November to express my gratitude. It's a little hokey and I'm not going to be posting on Facebook and bragging about my righteousness or anything, I simply want to take the opportunity to reflect a bit on how much good really does exist all around me.  Sure, I could sit down and make a list right this moment of 30+ things for which I am thankful, but I am making it my personal challenge to give thanks for something that occurs each and every day. Heck, some days I may find more than one thing and it goes without saying that there will be days where my gratitude will be expressed for something as pathetic as the fact that I got my teeth brushed because that, indeed, can be a feat on certain days. I will not make this fancy, I will not attempt to photograph everything nor will I create some sort of template in an effort to look good while being humble. I want to keep the focus as clear as possible without the distraction of meeting my own ridiculous expectations. So here is to finding the good, acknowledging life as it happens, and focusing on the positive. Today I am thankful.

Today I am thankful for a best friend who does not care that the house is a mess or that dinner is the same as it was the last time she was here; who is able to leave off and pick up a conversation without so much as a "where was I?" when the kids are up to no good (which is all.the.time.); and who doesn't need to be asked to carry on feeding Beck while I am spraying off the remains of Anderson's puked-up dinner not even 2 minutes into our meal. It truly was quite a night.

Daddy Day

A week ago Saturday was "Daddy Day" at Anderson's preschool - a morning set aside just so dads could go to school with their kids and experience preschool for an hour. No moms and no siblings allowed, it was all very top secret. I have no idea what they did but I know they painted and played and came home with shoes full of sand. So far I have heard nothing of a Mommy Day, but I am keeping my fingers crossed.