Wednesday, August 31, 2011


Today was one of those days when I wanted my best foot forward.
Elsa had a vision teacher for the blind coming from Denver's Anchor Center,
 a preschool developed for the visually impaired.
I guess I am always a little nervous for these visits...
It may have started when I toured the facility
 and this same lady said there was a kid that attended and at the age of four
had no idea there were shelves in the refrigerator. 
That little note stuck with me and since then I have this fear
that I am gonna forget something really important with Elsa.

So anyways, I spent the day yesterday picking up stray socks and snotty abandoned Kleenexes.
And after hours of straightening and mopping and folding and washing...
our house was tip top.

Fast forward to this morning.
My day started off serving a new recipe I am calling cinnamon steaks.
You just pretend that you know how to make cinnamon rolls except you kill off all of the yeast by putting it in reeeeally hot milk. 
Then you let it sit around for hours and imagine that it might raise just a smidge. 
Next you smother it with butter and sugar and tons of cinnamon,
 just knowing that once you stick it in the hot oven,
it will awaken and rise into fluffy perfection. 
 After baking for 30 minutes you pull it out of the oven and gaze at a half-a-dozen flat gooey pastries. 
 Slop some icing over the top and there you have it. 
Cinnamon Steaks.

After Elsa was dressed by her adoring sister and doused spritzed with some perfume,
 she managed to venture into the laundry room and consume a bit of dryer lint.
  I'm not exactly sure how much,
 I just saw remnants stuck to her nose and some scattered across the floor.

After a  little rolling of the eyes, bawling over a missing hat, and an empty Folgers can when I usually stumble for that first pot of coffee...

let me repeat that

the big kids were off to school
(yep Milo included!)
and I did a victory dance for conquering
the first few hours of the morning.

Then the teacher came,
and the entourage.
And Elsa was magnificent,
doing all her best tricks and charming the whole audience.

And I felt good about the visit.

Sometimes the "Services" can catch me in a vulnerable mood.
Sometimes I feel like my parenting is under scrutiny.
Usually it is just my pride
or maybe my insecurities
because I am really grateful for all of the insight the teachers provide.
But today was good.

Tomorrow's lesson: Fridge dynamics.

Friday, August 19, 2011

a beautiful belly

It was one of those moments.
You know the ones
where your emotional collapse
takes you
(and often an unlucky someone else)
by surprise??

I pulled up to the gas station
and my cell phone rang.
My buddy Sara on the other end.
What started out as
"hey howya doin?"
Quickly digressed into a
bumbling slobbering mess.

Right there at the gas pump.

Somehow amidst school starting,
Milo's birthday, Elsa's surgery,
and some jr. high drama...

My train derailed and I fell apart.

We had planned on taking Sara's preggo pics. 
I said we could wait until next week.
But she saw right through it
and like a great friend
sent me a text.

"I will be at your house @ 7
and we can go take pics."

Just the escape I needed.
A night to take pictures
of a wonderful person waiting
for the most wonderful gift.

So we enjoyed an hour of fresh air.
And thanks to a lovely neighbor
with a lovely yard,
and a beautiful belly
on a beautiful girl...
we got some great pics!!

mama waiting

on a bicycle built for two

her pot of gold


farm girl

Monday, August 15, 2011

Binder Blues

So my camera has taken a bit of a hiatus. 
I guess somewhere along the lines it got the message that it was summer vacation. 
Maybe now that the vacation is ending it will "snap" out of it.
OK that was real cheesy!

And as vacation drifts away,
We are ready for school to start.
I should say that I am personally ready for school to start.

It always feels victorious to have survived the traumatising event of school supply shopping.

Really it shouldn't
have been so hard.
Larry took Levi,
and Milo only needed
 a handful of things.

So it was just Josi and me.
We hit Target for a little variety.

I had the list handy.
Which is an improvement from most years

I had only 1/4 of my children.

It was set into the plans and budget to do the dirty deed.

So I am not exactly sure when or why things went downhill.

Am I the only one in the Universe that has sticker shock when it comes to 3 ring binders????

Does anyone else have a coronary over the price of
 plastic pencil bags?

Am I the only mother who feels the urge to grab her children by the arm and run frantically away from the brightly colored school supply section????

Maybe that is why it is tucked back into the far corner of the store!!
It is the only time of year I see mothers having the department store meltdown.

Instead of toddlers throwing tantrums,
there are middle aged women crying and kicking amongst the big bins of glue sticks.

Or maybe that was only me!?!

I knew things were going downhill when I refused to buy a $6 dry erase marker board.

It is actually one of the most important of school supplies for a seventh grade girl with a locker.

I tried the deep breathing techniques,
tried positive thinking,
threw out a few prayers.

I did finally get control of myself,
 but made her swear to get the cheapest one out there.

I asked the nice girl at the checkout counter if they provide post supply shopping counseling.

She just looked at me funny.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

"Time for the odd to get even"

The teenagers are home.

They sent out some mental vibes
or maybe a couple of texts

and out of the woodwork came other teenagers.

They went downstairs and watched
Revenge of the Nerds.

Remember that movie???

I watched it on HBO
a billion years ago.

It's probably still on HBO!

There was lots of imitation nerdy laughter
and such drifting up the stairs.

Milo and Elsa and I hid
behind the baby gate!!

Lambda Lambda Lambda!!!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Some amazing kids with amazing families

When Elsa was first born and we found out about her vision, the Internet became a really important tool to learn about her diagnosis.
 There were complicated genetic research websites that overwhelmed me with long explanations. 
There were medical websites and blind education websites that provided a handle on the new terminology that was flooding our conversations. 
There were resources all over the world wide web that related to our baby's conditions. 
But the websites that have given me more  hope than anything are blogs by
people in similar situations telling their stories.

Because a diagnosis feels heavy.

It is scary.

It makes you feel like you are separate from the normal world.

It gives you a unique view and sometimes that different outlook feels lonely.

So it has been really encouraging to meet  some lovely families traveling the same road.

Here are just a few that I follow:


All amazing kids with amazing families!!

Monday, August 1, 2011


Right now.
milo is in his jammies.
it's 4:39.
he has been a dog for the past few days.
elsa is playing with the shopvac.
the 15th chocolate chip cookie of the day smeared across her specs.
i should be cleaning my mama's house
or weeding her overgrown yard
or cooking up some yummilicious treat for the homecoming party tomorrow.
but i'm busy.
digesting the other half of the box of cookies.
i tried to replace the tank-top-with-jeans-and flip-flops tan lines
by laying in the tanning bed and cremated myself.
i have consumed too much allergy medicine.
too much sugar.
too much caffeine.
plus i'm just realizing that what used to be procrastination
has morphed into paralysis.
it's like i'm waiting until the last minute
but then i just decide it's too much hassle in the end.
it might be because i am at that awkward stage of parenting
when your baby gets to be a year
and you realize you do still exist
but forgot a bit of who you are between diapers
and bottles and repositioning baby socks.
i'm sure i will come back around
as soon as public school takes over as boss.
summer vacation will disappear
and ballgames and bedtimes will rule.
my baby will stroll into toddlerhood
my preschooler will waltz into the halls of the elementary school
my girl will paint her eyes and my boy will start to shave
and i will be reminded of how quickly my littles grow up.
i guess for now it's good enough just to be Mom.