Thursday, April 28, 2011

time spent here

heart dancing wild
soul set to fly
this freedom i feel
reaches up to the sky

my lungs breathe easy
feet love to move
released onto this journey
im finding my groove

life moving forward
sunrise and sunset
still simply just me
are you feeling it yet

whole self on the grow
plant my seed in the ground
compass in your hand
yet lost and spinning round

scattered and searching
deep in the forest of your brain
one day to find
roots always remain the same

I spend a great amount of my time with my nose stuck to my journal and pen glued in hand these days. Our lives have been shifted and while at times it's hard for our littles {mostly our boys} to understand we continue to move forward, faces filled mostly with smiles. The change has been immense and the littles are now getting used to sharing two homes without their mama and papa sharing in one. Mama and Papa are however finding our balance within our new roles in one anothers lives and I'm proud to say that this start to our co-parenting journey has been filled with nothing but ease. We remain great friends because at the root of everything there was this awesome friendship and while being in love didn't or couldn't last, love did. We've shared and loved through some of the most life altering experiences together.. The memories and friendship always to hopefully remain.

Our littles continue to amaze me on a daily basis. The biggest being so filled with wisdom at the age of six that I have constantly have to step back and ask "He's six?" It seems that we've been in each other lives as long as I can remember. Growing up with one another, six years hardly seems long as the life we've shared together. I feel his struggles and he is continually effected by what's going on and out of his control. Sometimes he, often actually, he has moments filled with rage and confusion. The thing is that the kid is so bright he's bound to feel everything and share everything, he's been raised on this journey knowing that his feelings matter most and he should feel/speak/show as he pleases but to always try to be mindful of kindness. With what he's going through the kindness has been lacking, but I see his wheels turning and know that his actions even on his cloudy days are intertwined with love. Times are hard but communication is the key and with that we will ride this thing out into the sunset, mama and her first little. And to quote him, while taking a time out for himself and deep in discussion with a friend about growth, actions and reactions he said "I could trace my steps today for tomorrow." and my heart melted. The kids got soul.

Our midlittle has had a case of the gunk this past week. He is slowly on the mend and as always very go with the flow. Growing day by day physically and mentally he's bound and determined to figure things out on his own. He's been working on tieing his shoes but doesn't want to know how to tie them because he already knows, he's brilliant you know, a boy of his own words and his own funky lace tying do-ups. He fills my heart.

Our wee little gal is doing fabulous! Nearly crawling, definitely getting around one way or another already. Filled with waves, and claps. She is growing before my eyes into this little person. This great little person, in fact. One that I look forward to spending my time with. It really is amazing how quickly they grow, each day brings something new. Life is always interesting as a mama.. and I am forever grateful for these little loves of mine.

deep in thought, a quiet rest in her favorite spot.

Monday, April 18, 2011

celebrate this place in this beautiful time and space

to bend and bow but never break
grow and give yet never take

roots running deep like secrets beneath the ground
for hundreds of years to never be found

one with the soil while reaching for the sky
safety and home place to lives that fly

limbs set free to shake, dance and sway
continually connected along the way

one by one your leaves will fall
bright colors gone you still stand tall

wisdom is great and time here is long
to look to you is to keep me strong

you're beauty is one to appreciate
a generous life we must celebrate

when you're all gone who will we be
for we can live a life unknown by a tree


Happy Earth Day week wonderful folks! Hope life finds you well.. I've missed this space!

Monday, March 7, 2011

A Little Masterpiece

Our biggest little is very into writing and drawing and most often when he shows me one of his masterpiece's my heart swells, and this one was no different. Except maybe that this time I was wondering if my heart was going to jump up out of my throat and wrap it's ventricles around him like arms. Nah, but seriously, this one melted me. I am blessed to have such a cool little man to share my time with. This little is wise beyond his years.

Love is when I get together with my family and animals. It makes me feel like love.
                                                           -Dominic Isaiah

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Real Love

Eight years ago today I walked into a busy cafeteria and handed a love note to one of my dearest guy pals. We'd been really connecting, and after a long walk with our pups {and other friends} out on the river I knew there was something real there. I could no longer go on ignoring it, and I knew he was feeling it too, he had been in fact since the first time we dated when I was maybe thirteen. He claims he knew I was the one way back then--only that time I broke his young heart. But this time I wanted to give it another go. I was so nervous walking in and handing him that letter that I stayed up all night pouring my heart and soul into the night before.

I am happy to say that the letter was well received. Just as I knew he was feeling the same energy and our relationship went wild and crazy from there. He came over on the night of March 6th, 2003 and the rest was history. We fell madly in love. We were crazy over each other. But, we were young. And not only were we crazy over each other but we were mostly plain crazy. Crazy teenagers.There were a lot of ups and downs in the first seven months of our relationship. It was so new and exciting but we both had pasts that we were trying to move away from which proved harder than we'd both thought. However we made it through and in the seventh month of our dating relationship we found out we were pregnant with our first blessing. A huge surprise for both of us but an exciting wonderful one at that.

We got our first place together about a month before I graduated high school. He moved in right away while my ma made me wait until either I had my first little or turned eighteen. {they were due to happen within days of each other} Graduation happened and I waited patiently for our blessing to come earth side. After he arrived we all moved in together and family life as we knew it had begun. There were a lot of struggles that first year living together but we pulled through like we always do. He proposed to me in that old house when our biggest little was six months old. So many memories.

We decided to get married about a year and a half after he proposed with our second little already on the way. Our wedding day was nice and relaxed. Just the way I'd hoped it would be.Shortly after the nuptials we headed to the hospital to find out the gender of our second little. Such a special day. We found that we were indeed having a second son and then we headed home to pack our car to head out for our honeymoon filled with live music, family, togetherness, and last but not least, love.

We welcomed our very last little in July of last year. We tried so hard to bring her into our lives and now that she is here our family is complete. We still have our struggles, what relationship doesn't? This new year has proved harder than ever before in our relationship, but we always continue to look towards the future. And in the future we see one another. We feel that we were meant to be, that this love we have is more powerful than anything. Our two Gemini souls were meant for one another and if you look at the compatibility between two Gemini's you will find that we happen to be very in tune, and together are the most interesting couple one might know. Interesting indeed.

So today, as I sit here and reflect on our eight years together I am grateful. Grateful for all that we've shared and will continue to share in the future. Grateful for all that we have overcome. Grateful for the things we will overcome together in the future. Lots of gratitude. I know that our paths were meant to cross and I thank the universe for the many lessons we have learned together as one. I hope our littles can see that love is worth it. It is worth fighting for. I hope that one day when they are in love, from the highest to the lowest moments, that they will feel how real and deep it really is. That they will be able to be real with their loved ones always, that they will always remember to protect their love, to water it like a flower so that it only continues to bloom. But mostly I hope that they will find their soulmate, the one that even when they'd rather not connect with them something is there drawing them back, and proving it's worth. That it's meant to be. I hope that they find a connection like their papa and I have. A safe connection. One that, in marriage or not, will last a lifetime. Because to me marriage is a document--a vow to stick together forever. But real love, love that's not found on paper, love that's found the way we found it eight years ago as two friends out on the banks of the Green River feeling high on each other and freedom without any jotting down of John Hancock's because anyone can sign their name, but it's what they feel in their heart and soul that counts most. I've known ever since that night in March of 2003 our relationship was extraordinary, and no matter where life takes us we will always share this connection. This love we have is real. And on our anniversary I am feeling it set me free.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Good Enough

I often have a bad case of the good enoughs. I worry that I am not good enough for this and that. That I don't look good enough. That my clothes aren't good enough. That my thoughts aren't good enough for certain people. That my love isn't good enough. And with all of the struggles I've been dealt lately I am struggling with the good enoughs more than ever.

The thing is that I have these three wonderfully amazing littles. I want them to feel good enough. I don't want them to see mama struggling with herself but I do want them to see that this case of the good enoughs is very real. And that throughout life they will feel the weight of these good enoughs that everyone feels. However I want them to be able to accept the good enoughs, to be real with them. I want them to embrace them, to feel them, to move through these feelings and truly feel them knowing that they are not alone. Everyone has these feelings the key is to be able to accept these good enoughs, I don't want them to hide these feelings. They are very real. They should be talked about. This society we live in is a scary place. I think it's time to communicate with one another. Instead of trying to compete or catch up over and over again lets talk about our differences, lets share our good enoughs, and as Single Dad Laughing says here: lets be real.

I want my littles to know that they are good enough. They are one person, the one person, in fact, that they were put here on this beautiful planet to be. I don't want to see them struggling with the good enoughs, but I know they will. I have already seen my boys start to feel it. The pressure of the good enoughs that is. And I know that now, well now, we have a daughter. A daughter who is going to feel the good enoughs maybe even more so than her brothers have or will. I want her to feel beautiful inside and out. I don't want her to compare herself with the women around her with hair died three different colors, jeans squeezing their butt cheeks, and make-up on their faces thicker than mud on pigs feet. I want her to feel good enough. I want her to know that her natural beauty IS good enough. I want her and my boys to know that everything they do in their life is good enough. Everything happens for a reason. You are exactly who you are for a reason. Everyone has faults and everyone has beauty and we need to accept both within ourselves and others. These feelings need to be talked about openly and honestly. They need to be validated. We all need to be accepted for who we are. And most of all we need to be real. Real with ourselves and those around us.

I hope I can help to inspire my children to share these good enoughs with myself, Papa Bear, and whomever else they feel could benefit. I hope that I can help to teach them to be real. I hope that they will grow not only to be compassionate towards others but also towards themselves because before we can love others we must first love ourselves. Our real selves.

And in the spirit of being real I must end with a good enough. Because through writing this blog post I am feeling this feeling that is very real and very good enough.

::I hope I am a good enough mama to teach my littles to accept and validate these feelings inside themselves and others. And to help them to know and feel within and without that they are in fact good enough and exactly the person that they were put here to be.::

"A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty." - Albert Einstein

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Bedtime Boogie

Bedtime for the boys is always a huge drawn out process.

It looks something like books, kisses and hugs, drink, snack, music, tucked in. Except the tucked in only lasts until I hit the lower level of our home. Almost as soon as my foot hits the last stair I hear one of them jump out of bed up there.

I'm currently sitting in the rocker with a sleeping baby in my lap, boob still hanging out even though she's been detached for a good ten minutes now, and a New Castle in hand listening to Tennessee Jed which just so happens to be blaring from the upstairs now with feet hitting the floor in what seems to be a dancing frenzy and I just sit here and smile. They are crazy littles with a ton of spunk and I sure love having them in my life.

And even if I'd planned on some quiet time tonight just myself, my beer, and my blog I have to admit I'm enjoying the {even more loud than before when I called it blaring!} music which now happens to have been changed to Lawyers, Guns and Money how's that for a lullaby? And with the Widespread Panic being played I now know that our biggest little is the DJ, caught red handed with the tunes he picked.

Soon enough they will lay down and I will go up, re-tuck, and turn the music on low. But for now they are free to party because this mama fondly remembers late night boogieing with her sister when she was younger and knows that moments like this are the ones that last a lifetime.

And speaking of sisters-this little one's 7 months old already!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Sun Kissed Mind

Today the sun is shining and spring thoughts are jumping around in my head like rabbits on a pogo sticks. I've got so many things in store for this years warmer months. Things like expanding my herb garden, lots of working in the veggie garden, swimming, fishing, hiking, camping, camping, camping. {Did I mention I can't wait for camping?}

As our smallest little is laying on the bed next to me making a mess in her diaper I can't help but be excited over thoughts of her running around {or crawling} showing off her diapered booty and not having to cover up. I am so ready to be done with all the layering of clothing. No more sweaters, long undies, socks, snow pants, boots, mittens, hats.. Off with it all I say. I'm ready for tank tops and feeling my hair gently swish against my back with the soft summer breeze. I'm ready for barefoot trips out to the clothesline and feeling the blades of fresh green grass poking up between my toes. {and Ell's diapers are needing the sunshine almost as bad as myself!} I look forward to cooking out and calling muddy worn out boys in just in time for dinner. I look forward to the Gemini birthdays {am I really going to be 25 this year?!} and the celebrations of our little Cancer's first birthday as well.

February has always been my least favorite month. And this year it's proved itself to be just that and then some. I am so ready for this month to come to a close. It's time to move forward, shine like the sun, and live the life I love. In just five short days March will be here, the green grass will start to slowly appear again, and this mama will be feeling rejuvenated. I am ready for this new month. A new start to an old life.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

On the Other Side

Yesterday we were feeling the need for some freedom. I think we all needed some fresh air and I know that Papa Bear and I, being the Gemini's we are, were defiantly in need.{Did I mention that our biggest little is also a Gemini. Lots of good twins and bad twins running around our homestead.}We had the windows open in the house all day but it just wasn't enough so we decided to step out into the woods for bit with our littles.

We left the house at about 4:30 expecting a couple of hours of solid hiking/wandering time out among the snow covered trees. We always take the same country roads out to our nearest state park. Those roads are filled with memories from Matt's childhood, times we spent together as crazy teens, and now the many of times we have driven them with our van full of littles. There is a tree high up on a hill on a little piece of land that Matt's Grandfather used to farm that is marked with the names of a Native American and a soldier who both fought and died on the hill. Each time we drive by the boys start to talk about the battle.. and my mind instantly wanders to the time that we {before we were a couple} drove up that hill in our friends little truck. I was always the only gal along for the ride and it was always interesting to see what kind of mischief the boys would cause and just how much a lot of it scared the shit out of me.. And then just as we turn the bend there is a little well that Papa Bear and his Grandpa once got water from. I've heard the story a million times over and now when we reach the well we both look at each other and start to tell it--me usually putting a funky twist on it that leads to us both cracking up.

Yesterday as we were passing the well we stopped to watch a few white tailed deer running around the lake across the road. We were blessed with the presence of of many critters yesterday, big and small, and the boys thrived off of them. As we pulled away from watching the deer, turning the bend, and shortly after climbing our hill that we usually fly over to lose our stomachs this time we flew over to find that there was still two feet of snow sitting on the road. We decided to take the risk and see if we could push our way through in our minivan, and ummm, we couldn't. But it wasn't that same horrible oh no we're stuck kind of situation. This was more like we were pretty sure we were going to get stuck now lets make the best of it. And best of it we did. Papa Bear and I laughed as we were out trying to kick snow out of our path. We were in and out of the van 8 times, our two smallest littles passed out, and Dom looked at us so seriously as said "Okay, so if we can't make it the 9th time are we going to call someone?" But we were determined. Papa Bear put the pedal to the metal and practiced his race car driving skills and we pushed our way out of the drift. We'd made it out on the other side. Seems like we've been all over that making it out on the other side stuff lately. We make one helluva team.

By the time we got to the park the pines were slowly being swallowed by fog and darkness was creeping in. Even though we were walking along in the grayness it felt good. I felt free. I was at ease and could feel a huge weight lifted off my chest. {even if I had our smallest little attached in the front carry position} I need mother nature in all of her beauty more than I'd known. The boys ran ahead rolling around in the snow and getting wetter than wet in all of the slush while Papa Bear, and I {plus one} followed behind in their little footprints. We studied animal tracks and listened to the coyotes howling across the lake. It was a beautiful evening with my family. My family that I am so blessed to be a part of. This love that we share is big. We've had our share of struggles dating back to 2003 when our story started with two young {and crazy} teenage friends being drawn to one another like magnets but we always pull through. We've created and lived so much since then with many ups and downs. And it always seems as if the other side is brighter and more love filled than before. There are so many more good times around the bend and I look forward sharing them with my family. My big love.

Please excuse the pictureless post-I am in need of new camera batteries and I'm sooooo missing the capturing and creating! Soon!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Piece Of My Heart

Our home has been covered by a big storm cloud these past few days. Truths were told and lies pulled from the deep to be dissected over and over and over again. To be honest my last post makes me sick to my stomach. The last two actually. Or maybe everything dating back to January seventh.

While I want to write, I'm struggling. And this isn't the place where I can or should write right now. I have decided to take a break from the blog. A break for healing my soul. I will write in my small journal that rests under the head of my bed. The journal I haven't had to write in since July of 2009 when we lost our pregnancy and my grandpa all at once. It really should be black instead of yellow. It's filled with hurt. And with the way I'm feeling now it may just literally be filled by the time I'm finished with it.

I will be back. When is hard to say, but I do enjoy having this little space in the world to share our joys and plan to continue in the future when the joys aren't overshadowed by hurt. And most importantly when I can pull myself out of bed and be the mama that I should be {and hope to be again soon!} to my littles. I hate being so broken, so burned, and I wont be forever. But right now I am here in the now and what's going on here in the now is defiantly not blog worthy. It's not even fucking life worthy. So it will be tucked away in my journal and that will be that. 

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Slow and Be

Chilly winds are blowing today. The two pines in my backyard are fiercely whipping around with a blur of crisp white snow being tangled through the branches. I can hear the wind gusting into the walls of our house, and the house ever so softly moaning with each blow. The temperature outside is well below freezing, and while I might be exaggerating the inside isn't feeling much warmer.  

We're forcasted to be hit with a big winter storm today into tomorrow. They are calling for anywhere between 14-18 inches for our area. And while I haven't always been a fan of winter, each year I find myself more at ease with the cold, white, blustery weather that is our home place during these long hard months. It's safe to say that I am excited for this winter storm heading our way. And I'm hoping that mother nature finds the relief she needs after dropping a fresh, deep, white blanket over our home towns.

Today we have our woolens on. Our smallest little is sitting in the rocker, wooden spoon in hand or mouth, buried underneath our heavy quilt, waiting for her mama to preheat the oven for cookie baking.

This mama is hoping that by doing some baking the inside of our home will warm up just a tad. I'm also hoping that Papa Bear can find some wood for us on his way home from work, and that he gets off early enough to travel slowly in the light hours and make his way here safely.

I just received a call from a dear friend letting me know that the boys will be dismissed early from school today, and our Cub Scouts pack meeting has been canceled for tonight. Sounds like it will be a nice night for cozying up fireside with the ones we love. What a perfect excuse to slow down and just be. And to that I say: Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.  

Just a smackerel will do for my little honey pooh.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Needs Be Met

Yesterday was the first day that I'd left the house without my smallest little in quite some time.

I needed to get groceries and I needed a time out. While I was preparing to leave I was in panic mode. I was in the middle of explaining the list of how to's to Papa Bear when he looked at me and said "Honey, this is our third child, I think I know what I'm doing." and then he followed that with "I will just put her upstairs and leave her to cry." You see, sometimes he can be quite the turd. And I might have been worried if it were any other man, or any other baby, but I know these two share a special connection. One that would not allow Papa Bear's heart to leave his gal crying anywhere. Especially on a different level of our home. And for that I am thankful.

I am grateful that I have this wonderful husband who knows that when our baby cries she has a need that needs be met. Weather she's hungry, poopy, sleepy, or just feeling the need for some closeness they are all valid. She can fully trust her mama and papa bear because she's never been left alone to cry it out and for that I believe our connection runs even deeper with out smallest little. We know her. We know what she needs by her different cries, and we pay attention to her demands because her happiness and security means the world to us. She's our little gal, and she deserves to be showered with nothing but love and kindness. {just the same as her brothers were before her.}

I am a bit embarrassed to admit that there were tears in my eyes when I left the house yesterday. Tears because I have only left my gal a few short times.. but also tears because I know that her papa bear is totally capable of loving and caring for her and we are so blessed to have him. Papa's who can recognize both the needs of his partner and his baby are few and far between, I think. We really lucked out. I am married to a wonderfully caring man. He's my best friend and the best papa that our littles could ask for.

And yesterday while I was driving I cranked my music and danced {as hard as one can dance while keeping their vehicle between the lines} because I was feeling free, the sun was shining bright, and for once I was alone. It felt nice, and I celebrated it to the fullest extent. And by the time I was pulling back into the driveway I was feeling excited to be one with my family again.. All it took was a little breather and I was rejuvenated. I walked into the house with two boys playing peacefully on the steps and one wee gal up in Papa's arms all lit up with smiles because mama was home and she was ready to nurse. And as I settled in the rocking chair, covering my gal with our quilt to cozy in for our nursing session, everything felt right in our world. I am blessed to be married to this wonderful papa of ours, and to be a mama to such amazing little littles. Life is so good.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Crunchify Three: Family Cloth

I have this terribly horrible issue of not wanting to feel like I have to do something. Having to do things that I may not feel up to doing at any particular time triggers me to rebel against whatever that thing may be. Part of me wants to say that it's my Gemini nature. But another fairly large part of me wants to say that it is because I attended public schooling.

Needless to say, that is why this third crunchify post has taken this poster so long to, um post.

{and now I've just opened a whole new can of worms for myself to digest. See: public schooling statement above.}
~ ~ ~
Family Cloth {almost}

When I told Papa Bear that I was writing these crunchify posts his first response was something along the lines of "Don't write about the wipes {insert crazy/nervous laugh here}" And so today, while trying to think of what crunchy thing I'd like to share, I kept thinking of said wipes, because well, it made it seem easy that I didn't even have to come up with the idea myself. So to that I say: Thanks honey for inspiring me. Please don't be too embarrassed. Love you. 

I googled family cloth looking for a simple definition to plug in here but didn't come up with much. I was also hoping to find some really cool stats on just how many trees are saved by using cloth wipes, and couldn't find any useful information for that either. So it looks like you'll be getting my full take on family cloth. Now the question is: Do you trust me? {insert crazy laughter here}

Really the idea isn't crazy. It's actually a very simple concept. Instead of wiping your lower region with toilet paper after using the restroom, you wipe with cloths. Easy huh? And then when you're cloths are running low you wash them, and reuse them. Again, and again, and again, and again. Reuse, reuse, reuse, reuse, and waalaa just like that there are no trees harmed for the wiping of your butt. Nice huh? I thought so too. Especially considering that about 27,000 trees are cut down daily for the use of sanitary products. Twenty-seven thousand in ONE day, wowza. Not only that, but many of these big tree plantations are using manufactured pesticides and fertilizers to grow these trees. And a ton of water on top of that. All that for fluffy white toilet paper. {that will shortly be, well um, stained brown and pitched} It is said that if each American family were to use one roll of recycled toilet paper annually it would save nearly 400,000 trees. But I imagine it is still quite the process to make recycled toilet papers, and that there is still a ton of water, etc, used in the process of doing so. Much more than the amount of water used for a family to launder their own wipes, I'm sure.

Now, let me describe my set up for you.

I have a cute little basket that sits on the shelf above my toilet for folded, clean wipes. The wipes that I use currently are just simple washcloths that I picked up at the Dollar General until we can afford to invest in some nice organic wipes. However, we are only wiping our bums with these wipes so really I could have just created them from old t-shirts and socks to save the extra $10 spent on the washcloths. I keep a trashcan under my bathroom sink {which is in reach from my toilet} for the dirty wipes. And when the can is full or the wipes are low, I wash. Usually with the diapers to save on an extra load.

The first time I heard of cloth wipes I was kind of taken back like whoa are people really doing this?? And then I thought that maybe it wouldn't be so bad if just I did it, and only for when I went number one, or the artist formally known as pee. So I made the switch. And then our midlittle made the switch because well, he often accompanies me in the bathroom, and often wants to do whatever it is that I am doing. And then his bigger brother followed suit because it just kind of became normal after that. So I started using them full time, since the boys were brave enough. Three months after we made the switch our smallest little was born and she too mostly uses cloth wipes. The only one in the family who hasn't completely made the switch yet is Papa Bear. He actually only makes the switch when he is out of toilet paper. {yes, he is still buying the junk!} However with him being the only one using the toilet paper, when it's out it's out for a while, because what kind of man is going to remember that he needs toilet paper before he actually needs toilet paper? Catch my drift?

I am happy to say that I have been mostly toilet paper free for 9 months. I say mostly because sometimes when you're out and about the moment arises that you need to wipe with something, right? And you can be sure that now when that moment does arise, and I complete my duties, I almost always throw my used toilet paper into someones trash can. Which sometimes leads to me having to pick used toilet paper back out of someones trash can too. Yucky. Because who wants to walk out of a restroom with their poopy toilet paper on display and most people might wonder why one would opt out of flushing toilet paper and may be a bit grossed out to find it while emptying their trash can, I'd think.

And with trying not to leak too much information here, you know tmi, or did I already cross that line with all my talk of poopy toilet paper? I want to add how much softer it is to wipe with cloth and how it doesn't ever tear and leave little remnants stuck to your skin. And, if you can have your set up near a sink I highly recommend it. It's so nice to have a dampened wipe should the moment arise when you may need one, just sayin'. 

Happy wiping!  

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

A Little Cooking

Today I awoke to a sweet gal who had one eye stuck shut. A brief moment of panic ensued until I returned with a wet wash rag. We got the gunk all cleaned out only to discover that her eye is indeed tinted with an all to familiar pinkish red color. And upon my midlittle stumbling into the bathroom for his usual morning potty session I noticed his eyes looked about the same, red and icky. So our only clear eyed little made his way onto the bus for school, while we spent a very mellow day here around the homestead.

A day that involved good spirits even if eyes were pink.
And resting those pink little eyes too.
Tonight my boys made their first ever meatloaf. Meatloaf because well, lets face it, you can basically add any amount of anything and it's going to turn out. And I wanted to leave it mostly up to them. After an afternoon of reading umteenmillion books, creating play dough cookie after play dough cookie, and making valentine hearts with arrows through them that turned into swords, umteenmillion swords to be exact I was feeling like being hands off. And my littles very much enjoyed being hands on, in, and gooed up while preparing their dinner. So we flowed.

I got out the ingredients they would need for the process and they got right down to business. It was so nice to see them so eager to create a dinner for our family. I watched as they carefully cracked each egg. Smiles stretching widely across their faces when they felt the sweet victory of having the complete shell in their hands, rather than bits and pieces in the bowl. They measured, they mixed and they packed the loaf into the pan. And while they waited for it to bake they helped me to make cornbread muffins. And to my surprise they were very skilled little batter pourers.

Tongues are for concentrating.

Papa Bear arrived home to one Delicious smelling house and two boys very eager to share their dinner creation. We gathered around our small table for our feast prepared by our two biggest littles and I couldn't help but smile.. Surely moments like this-a family of five gathered around a too small table, eating a meal prepared with love by two small littles-are what life is all about.

And right before we headed up to rest our heads upon our pillows for the night I snapped this picture. And it's just so telling..

Our biggest little with reading material in hand.
Our midlittle always rowdy and on the move.
Our smallest little with her big blue eyes planted on her big brothers.
And one mama filled with love while watching them from a distance.
Each one unique and each one mine.
Love. Love. Love. 

Sunday, January 23, 2011


I was very close with my grandma as a child. She was a kind hearted soul always so full of love. She was a mother to eight children, including my ma. And those eight children went on to enrich her life with many grandchildren. One being me, of course.

We lost my grandma when I was fourteen. At that point in my life I was detached from most of my family. My parents were newly divorced and I was struggling to make it out on the other side. I stopped frequent visits with my Grandma favoring hanging out with friends and causing trouble instead. In that short time my Grandma was diagnosed with ovarian cancer and began to slip away. I remember visiting her house once during her sickness bringing along a short-term high school boyfriend. She had already changed so much and her once strong body was growing weak and frail. It hurt me to see her that way. I didn't visit again until she was in the hospital and unable to communicate with me. I sat by the bed and held her hand thinking about nothing but the ache in my heart and the loss I was feeling. After she passed I slipped quickly from her visitation and funeral. The extreme loss I had felt during that time was too much, and I wanted out. Not only had I lost my family as one, living under the same roof, but now I'd lost my Grandma who I cared for so deeply. I was crushed.

I'd like to say that if I could go back and do it all over differently I would. But the past is the past and I believe that everything truly does happen for a reason. I believe that my Grandma understood and saw my troubles even if I never had the chance to explain myself to her.

Today when I think of Grandma my thoughts are only happy. Don't get me wrong, I'd love to be able to visit her out on the farm, bring Papa Bear to meet her, and to have my littles know their Great Grandma. But instead she will live on through me and the memories I hold in my heart. And you can be sure that my boys know of their Great Grandma they never got to meet and just how wonderful a woman she was. And my sweet gal shares the same middle name as Grandma, Mae. She too will know of her greatness. They will know of all the walks we took to the creek. All of the Eggs we colored each Easter. The way Grandma sang such sweet lullabies. How she almost always allowed us to play taste test even if we were making a disaster of her kitchen in the process, and even making each other sick at times. All of it, I want to share it with them.

I often like to think of how I would spend my time with Grandma now, as a mother myself.  Like I said before, she had eight children. Eight children with mostly a year or two in between each, and even less than a year between a couple, talk about a supermama! I would love to hear her take on motherhood. The birth stories of my ma, aunts, and uncles. What her life was like with her littles.. The love story between her and my grandpa. I'd love to go out and spend time with her in the garden and learn from her. Or to wander around the antique shops swapping stories about motherhood and life. I'd love to hear stories of my great-grandparents that I never met, and what they did in raising Grandma, that made her just so special.

Today though, I am happy knowing that if my Grandma were here she would be happy. Today I am wearing my Grandma's old sweatshirt, a Green Bay Packer's shirt to be exact. You see my grandma was born and raised on a dairy farm in Wisconsin. She and Grandpa started a family there. They were Packers fans. And today, while they rest in peace with one another, their headstone reads "Green Bay Packer Backers." And I sit here in Grandma's shirt smiling because I know that she and Grandpa are together again looking down on their earth-side family and celebrating the days big win.

She's my grandma and she was a grand grandma at that. My Grandma Ronnie.

..and this little gal looks just as good in green and gold as her great grandma once did.
She's my little Green Bay Packer Backer.  

Friday, January 21, 2011

Informed Decisions

Today I want to write about what's on my mind.

This blog post may be a controversial one. And I'm not writing it to heat things up or start a debate. I am writing it for parents out there who may want to become more informed. And mostly, I am writing it for my children. So that one day, when and if they read this blog, they will understand how and why they were vaccinated.

I have close friends who choose to fully vaccinate their children. I have friends who selectively vaccinate. And then I also have friends that choose to forgo all vaccinations. I do not judge. Each parent has a reason for the decision they make and I support those decisions. What's best for one fellow might not be best for the next. Everyone is different. It's time to start fully embracing these differences.

~ ~ ~

The other day a dear friend wrote in her blog about mother circles. You can find the article here. I would love to put something like this together in our area with all of the wonderful mamas I know.. but for the time being I am sharing because the term Mamaste hasn't been far from my thoughts since I read the article. I LOVE LOVE LOVE it.

Mamaste-- "the mother in me recognizes and honors the mother in you.”  There are so many *mother wars* going on out there. Natural Birth vs. medicated. Breast fed vs. bottle fed. Vaccinating vs. not vaccinating. It's just silly and I think it's time we all start loving one another and supporting each others journeys no matter how they differ. Like I said before, this mamahood is a crazy wild ride. So lets love one another through the struggles and the triumphs on this journey. Grab another mama by the hand and let her know how wonderful a job you think she's doing because as mothers we all know that our duties often go unappreciated or unnoticed, and well, lets help to lift one anothers spirits. Shine your light on another mama in hopes that she may shine brighter. I think we'd be amazed at how fast the love would spread.

~ ~ ~

I want to share parts of our vaccinating journey. Because for the informed the decisions can be extremely nerve wracking. And well, maybe just maybe by sharing our journey it will help a fellow mama (or papa) to further investigate, or to feel better about the decision they are making.

Let me start by saying that we delay and selectively vaccinate. Our biggest little was delayed and selectively vaccinated due to a reaction he had to his first set of vaccinations at two months old-the Prevnar vaccine to be exact. Our midlittle has been fully vaccinated up to this point because ignorance was bliss. And now, I've decided that we will selectively vaccinate our smallest little.

Yesterday she was vaccinated for Diphtheria, Tetanus, and Pertussis with the DTaP vaccine. This is the vaccine that scares me most, but I feel strongly that she receive it for the protection it may or may not provide against Pertussis. (I say may or may not because it seems that many vaccinated children are coming down with this disease as well as the unvaxed. I am aware of this fact.) If it were possible I would have opted out of the Diphtheria and Tetanus because Diphtheria is waaaaay uncommon and Tetanus isn't even a concern in infants, but as it turns out they don't manufacture a vaccine for Pertussis alone. They do have single Diphtheria vaccines and same goes for Tetanus but without the two together you wont find a Pertussis vaccine.

There are three brands of  the DTaP vaccine used today. The Dapatacel brand by Sanofi Pasteur, the Tripedia also by Sanofi, and the Infanrix brand by GlaxoSmithKline. The ingredients in each of these three brands differ. For instance the Daptacel brand contains more aluminum than the Tripedia brand, but the Tripedia contains mercury where the Daptacel doesn't. And the Infanrix contains higher levels of aluminum than the other two put together. (and that's not the only nasty ingredient in these vaccines!) Two of the three (T & I) use cow tissue extract in the making and culturing of the vaccine. The Daptacel also contains less than half the quantity of the Pertussis than the other two options, which is thought to be safer, because the Pertussis is thought to have been linked to the most side effects. Side effects that can range from diabetes, seizures, heart inflammation, Guillain-Barre syndrome, brain damage, and many many more.

There are also vaccine cocktails out there to reduce the amount of injections ones baby or child would undergo by combining the DTaP, Hep B, and Polio into one vaccine. If this is the route you should choose due to concerns over the amount of injections your child will receive then you should know that there are two options for the DTaP vaccine out there that combine these other two vaccines. One being the Pediarix (GlaxoSmithKline) and the other being Pentacel (Sanofi Pasteur) In the Pediarix the steps in creating the vaccine are very similar as if they were created separately but the Pentacel is a bit more controversial and was only approved for use in the Untied States within the past seven or so years. The product inserts don't offer any information as to how the vaccine for the Pentacel is created, and the DTaP and Polio components in this brand come from another combo vaccine called Quadracel that hasn't yet been approved for use within the States. I've found, from speaking with the local health departments, and our family doctor that one of these two vaccines is what is likely to be administered to your child unless you request otherwise.

With all that being said our smallest little received the Daptacel yesterday.(we've decided to delay the Polio and Hep B until we feel she is ready) I am also always sure to get the lot number and the expiration date for each and every vaccine she receives. I want to know what's going into my gals body. And you can be sure that even through all of this research and edumacting I've done myself that when I was rocking her to sleep I would check every few minutes to make sure that she was still breathing, and um yeah, I didn't sleep much last night. Call me a worry wart if you will, but the bliss from the ignorance is forever gone. And while I am happier for knowing what I know, it does make it much more real and scary being over on the informed side of things.

I am thankful for my knowledge though because if I hadn't been informed our smallest little would have received the Haemophilus Influenzae Type B, Pneumococcal, DTaP, Rotavirus, flu and Polio all in one day. Wowza, doesn't that seem like a lot for a little body to handle? I think, until we can get some better options for safer vaccines out there, that we as parents, grandparents, caregivers, nurses, and doctors need to become better informed when it comes to the health of our children. We need to make sure that our children are only receiving the best of these vaccine options out there. Because even if we choose to follow the strict vaccine schedule set by the American Academy of Pediatrics we should be using the best of the best (or should I say worst?) to do so. And we need to realize just how much this schedule has changed through out the years. I've run across parents who will often say "Well I got all these vaccines as a child and I turned out okay." And the truth of the matter is that you actually didn't receive these same vaccines and you didn't nearly receive the quantity that they are recommending today. Find the time to enlighten yourself, and you may be surprised at the things you will learn. And, if you're anything like me you may even feel some guilt over the vaccines/schedules you've used in the past but the past is just that and we can only go forward from here.

The main thing that I want to point out is that we have choices. If you are uncomfortable with any and/or all of the vaccines but want your children to attend public schooling there ARE choices. If you wish for your child to receive all of the vaccines but don't like the time line in which they are given YOU have choices. If you wish to only give certain vaccines at certain times you can do that to. YOU are the parent. This is YOUR child. Become informed and do the best for them that you can. I was often worried about the reactions I'd get because of my choices, but I've gotten nothing from the ones who matter most but positive feedback. Our Doctor was so happy that I decided to quiz him and get a feel for just exactly how he feels about vaccines. He was happy that I cared so deeply for my children that I would do this research and follow my heart when it comes to the choices I make for them. The nurses at the health department were more than happy to follow along with my wishes and treated me with nothing but kindness. More kindness actually than I was treated with back when ignorance was my bliss. So, if you feel the same way I feel, or are at all unsure about vaccines today don't be afraid to dig deeper, become informed, and share that information with the ones who matter most when it comes to your child's health. 


Helpful books on my journey to becoming informed:
Vaccinations A Thoughtful Parents Guide by Aviva Jill Romm
Childhood Vaccinations by Lauren Feder
The Vaccine Book by Robert W. Sears

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

To the Moon and Back

We are here. Half a year old. The past six months have slipped by quicker than quick. I've tucked so many memories from this sweet time that we've shared together in my heart for safe keeping.

Her grand entrance into the world was already six months ago. I remember every bit and piece of that day like it was yesterday. It was filled with magic. I've never connected so strongly with my body, Papa Bear, the universe, and of course our sweet babe. We are family, we are one, and our gal completes us.

And speaking of being one. She's half way there.

It sounds so cliche to say that they grow too quickly. But really, they do. I've had two littles reach the six month mark before, and before I knew it came one year, two years, three years, four years, five years, and six. This mamahood thing is a wild ride. A fast one at that. And I'm hanging on tight.

At six months old our smallest little has one little tooth and is working on a second. You'll often find her perched on my left hip, it's her favorite place to be. She is a huge fan of her big brothers, and lights up when they come near. She enjoys blowing raspberries and splashing in the bathtub. She loves sleeping, but only if mama is too, she's no napper. Her favorite toys are her Haba teething toy and her crinkle book. She loves animals and you can be sure if there's one in the room her eyes are glued to it's every move, especially Banjo. And it's hard to say who's more excited when Papa Bear walks in the door, her or the dog. Most of all though she loves to cuddle and nurse with her mama, and that certain mama happily obliges, because as it turns out I love to cuddle and nurse her too.

Happy six months, baby! We love you to the moon and back.

A special message from your brothers on your 6 month day.
"You're the best baby and I love you 'cause you're cute." -Dominic
"I love you like a sweetie" -Owyn


Monday, January 17, 2011

Taste Test

Our gal ate!

Well sort of anyways. Papa Bear and I were discussing when the best time to start solids would be, and well, we both got a wild hair up our butts and the moment just felt right so we went for it. We smashed up a little bit of avocado on our smallest littles highchair tray and set a spoon next to it. We figured if she could get the avocado to her mouth with or without the spoon it would be her first solid food and that would be that.

At first she rubbed her hands around in green goo and got a feel for it's texture. Then she did some finger lickin'. And finally she picked up her spoon and did a bit of drumming before she decided to rub it around in the tasty green goo. And to her surprise it stuck.

She licked her spoon and played mostly. She did get a good taste and feel for the avocado but I'm not sure how much actually made it's way into her honey pot. {honey pot being the other name for her belly thanks to Papa} But that's okay, actually just how we expected it to go. Our gals learning.

She tasted and played. And then when she was done she put her spoon down and let us know. Which made me feel even more sure that the way we started solids was just right for her. She tasted as much as she wanted and then she knew when she was ready to be done and she quit. It was all on her terms and we liked letting her have a say so.

Say so she did. Pretty loudly too actually. Then she waited patiently while mama got a rag to wash her face up. That she did not enjoy. The first of many face washes to come. Her big brothers still don't like having their faces washed up, so I figured she'd be the same.

So we took the big leap into solid foods. Even if we don't get them in every day we will continue to go with her flow and introduce her to new tastes and textures as she's ready. And in the meantime the girl is still crazy over her milks. So crazy in fact that today she actually signed for them when Papa was holding her. {we swear we saw it. And if not it sure as heck looked like it!} At nearly a half a year the gal knows what she wants and I swell with pride.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Ants and Kitties

Have I ever mentioned how much I love nap time? I do. But I especially love nap time on weekdays before the bus arrives with my midlittle.

It's my me time. I get a nice break all to myself. It's a time that even when I know there are things to be done.. I sit. And I don't do them. And it feels good. 

Today will be a busy one. I have lots on the agenda. We are out of laundry soap and the pile is heaping. Beds need to be made. The bathroom needs a scrubbing. Dishes are sitting in the sink. And here I am sitting in this chair. The chores will wait, while this mama is on break.

Tomorrow is Friday. The last day waking up in a Papa Bear-less house. Today when our midlittle woke up he stumbled into the bathroom, looked at me, and said "I wanted to give daddy a hug and a kiss." Little does he know--Papa Bear smooches us all before he leaves. I always stir and wake, open one eye, and whisper "Goodbye, love you" The boys however probably didn't even know that he did this until I explained it this morning. So our midlittle got ready with ease, knowing that he did in fact get a kiss from dad before he left. And our biggest little got ready with ease because he knew that there were ants on a log in his lunch pail and that's his favorite. Even when I put the ants on the log for him. Because he really enjoys being the ant placer here at home.

Our smallest little is just a wee bit adorable today. You see, on the first day of the new year we took a trip to the Salvation Army to browse all of the fine junk and I found the cutest pair of red kitty overalls I have ever seen. And, they are even cuter now that they are on my gal. Who woulda' thunk that a eighty cent pair of circa 1980 red kitty bibs could be so adorable, but they are and here's the proof.

Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


I've been kind of mia these past few days. Not only on the blog, but also in life. I'm here but my mind is elsewhere.

Matt's been working a lot lately and I feel like I haven't seen him for weeks. I have, but only long enough to fill his belly and see him off to bed. It's not enough, I often find myself wishing that he were home with us. And even though it's only hump-day, I'm already looking forward to the weekend, and spending time with Papa Bear.

I'm also feeling a bit overwhelmed with all of the growing our smallest little has been doing. She's nearly half a year, and it just seems like there is so much that I should be doing. I'm feeling the heat from society, I suppose. A few days ago I bought a box of oatmeal. And it's just been sitting on my counter glaring at me. Every time I walk by that box, I feel pressured. Luckily, with my research, and per Ell's new awesome Doctors advice, I know that it is okay not to start solids, at all, until she is one year old. Breastmilk is all she needs. Everything else is just for practice. I have been hardwired though, to start cereal at four to six months old. And feel the heat from nearly everyone around me, including Papa Bear. And I sit here wondering if she would be okay without the practice? Some studies even show that grains can actually do harm to the body before nine months old. What if I just gave her a bit of steamed broccoli to gnaw on, would that be better? After all, she's not going to be eating purees her whole life. Don't get me wrong I'm excited to start her on solids. I just want to make sure it's the right stuff at the right time..You see, this is what my head looks like inside right now. This and her third vaccine that she'll be receiving next week. How did this half a year mark sneak up on us so quickly?
Five and a half months inside mama.

Five and a half months outside mama.
It's gone by in the blink of an eye too. Not sure why I'm so surprised over it. It's happened twice before. The boys grew just as quickly. I think it has to do with something, that I'm sure must be called Last Baby Syndrome, or something like that.

My mind is busy with other things too. Like cooking, cleaning, getting the boys off of the video games they received for Christmas. I swear I get headaches from them playing them. All of the music and sound from the games is enough to drive someone nuts. Especially when they are both going at the same time. So, we are going to set up a system that works for us. Video games on certain days. I was thinking two days of the week would be okay, but what days? And then Papa Bear was thinking three days a week, so we'll have to work that out too. Of course the hours will be limited on said days. Because 48 or more hours of video games a week would be enough to turn you into one yourself, I'd think.

And lastly, I have been super excited for all of the mamas to be around me. I have four, yup four, ladies in my circle of family and friends who are expecting all within a month of each other and I am giddy over it. I can't wait to meet all of these new little earthlings when they arrive. Our littlest gal will have some new pals to romp around with in the future. There aren't too many around her age, and only one other little gal. So she will get some new friends, and maybe even a gal friend or two, or four. Each new life is such a blessing. And now there are four blessings on the way. Excited much? You bet I am.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Crunchify Two: Laundry Detergent

In 2008 we made the switch to cloth diapers with Owyn. I needed a new laundry detergent for washing his diapers in, but wasn't up for buying two different kinds of detergent for our family. We were already spending enough on just one jug at a time.

I decided to look into making my own detergent. And to my surprise it's actually really easy. So I set out to make my first batch and after that I never looked back.

Not only are we saving our clothing and skin from harsh chemicals but we are also saving our landfills from being piled with more plastic bottles. Annnnd we are saving money. I think we figured it to be somewhere around $250.00 a year, figuring that we were buying two jugs of detergent a month. And we have a lot of laundry with all of the family cloth so we may have even been using more than that. And since it saves us funds Matt likes to help with the making of it. He loves saving money. And I like that he helps because after grating a few bars of soap this mamas hands/wrists/arms get worn out.

When I first started making my detergent I was making a liquid. Which was the recipe I'd found online. While searching I found a ton of woman who would claim that they just did their own thing and no longer followed recipes, but they would say that they had started out with something similar to what I was planning on using and that it worked well .They'd just found their own niche. Soooooo yeah, I started with this liquid recipe, and saved my old detergent jugs and reused them over and over again.

Here is that recipe:

1/2 cup Arm and Hammer Washing Soda
1/2 cup Borax
1/3 bar soap grated. (I use Fells Naptha or Ivory)

-In a large pot heat 3 pints water. Add grated soap and stir until melted. Add in washing soda and Borax and stir until fully dissolved. Remove from heat.

-In clean pail pour 1 quart hot water and add heated soap mixture. Top pail with cold water and stir well. (It never clarified the exact amount of cold water and I usually just used 2-3 cups.)

- Use 1/2 cup per load. Shake well before each use as it will harden a bit. (I always left a bit of space in the jugs for shake room to start off.)

I have simplified my recipe now. And am making a powdered detergent rather than a liquid. I decided that I would like to use even less Borax in the mixture and I kind of just went with what felt right and it works just fine. It only takes me about 30 minutes to make three months worth. And with two busy boys and a five month old, it works much better!

I'd say my recipe looks something like this

1 cup washing soda
1/4 cup Borax
1/3 bar soap grated

Mix it all together. Shake up, and you're done. It's that easy. I use about 2 tablespoons per load and it seems to get the job done. I always double, triple, etc. to make how ever much I feel I need or am in the mood to make at that time. It just works.

We are saving money, the planet, and our health. Does it get better than that?

Friday, January 7, 2011

Big Enough for Love

The first house I can remember living in was a little white two bedroom on Congress street.

There were three of us kids and two parents living in the tiny house. I have so many fond memories of that house before the ripe age of seven.

We knew most all of our neighbors, even Earl, the elderly man living in the shack across the street. I can remember just how snugly my blue paint-splashed bike fit while ridding between the garage and the house.
My Ma had a beauty shop in the basement and we'd spend hours spinning around in her beauty chair. I remember singing into pencils and dancing on my bed with my sister. My parents had a water bed. There was a little rhubarb patch in the yard and I will never forget the day my mom accidentally pulled a snake out while harvesting the rhubarb for jam. On the back porch there was a table where Dad did his studying and mom did her sewing. I remember Mom sewing my red farm animal blanket for me on that porch. I had a sandbox out in the backyard. My neighbors had a dog named Bingo. And I had a crush on a boy named Beau that lived just down the street in the apartments across from my school. He stuck baseball cards in the spokes of his bike tires and I thought he was the coolest kid on the planet.

When I look back at all of my time there I don't see the small house. In fact I don't remember the house as being small at all. My mom however remembers differently and I bet my dad would too if I asked him. When I think of where we are at now, our small house, the one we bought when I was eighteen, the house with our three children, and us two parents, I think of all of the love and life that goes on in between these walls. And I wonder what my children will remember most from their years here. What memories will they take from this home of theirs? Because it is also the first one that they will remember. This is the house we brought our two smallest littles home from the hospital to. The one that our biggest little moved into at a little ten months old.

People ask how we do it all the time. Most act like it's unbelievable. That our house is too small. Truth is, it's hard to live in such a small house with three small children.There's a lot more organization needed in a small home. And it helps us to decipher our needs from our wants with ease. Less is more. The less bedrooms we have the more family time we spend together. We don't have space for five TVs, three computers, and a different video game system in every bedroom and I believe that we are closer because of it. We all sleep close by one another, crowd around a smaller table to eat our meals, and we all cuddle up on the living room rug to play games, read books, and have family movie nights together. I am thankful for all of the togetherness that we share here because when I look at the big picture, I know we wont be here forever. And I know that we may never be this close again. These days are ones to remember. These days in our first tiny home.

As the picture from my grandmother that hangs on the wall in my kitchen reads:
Dear House
You are really very small
Just big enough for love
that's all.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

It's Through

Our girls got a tooth!

It's not all the way in yet but I can feel the sharp little edges poking through her gums. I was able to feel that it had come through on Tuesday, and today it still looks about the same. But with her attitude I can tell that it's still working hard to make it's way above the surface.

The boys both got their first tooth in their fifth month too. Looks like Ell is following in their footsteps. It amazes me that we are already teething. It just doesn't seem possible that all this time has passed since she's come into the world. She's nearly half a year old. Yikes. Slow down baby, and be my baby forever, please?

It looks like she's saying "No mama, I want this many teeth."

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

High On Quilts

Yesterday my two smallest littles and I took a trip to the antique shop with my Ma.

I was raised in a family of antiquers. (is that a word?) My maternal and paternal Grandparents both sold, owned, and loved antiques. And the ones who are still here with us today are still loving antiques. I will forever remember my Grandma's basement as it was when I was a child, it was like sunken ship full of treasure. I can still remember the smell of it. 

I can also remember the days when I would go antiquing with my Grandmother. She would always be spiffying up her booth while I'd wander and browse all of the fine junk for sale. Each and every item has a story, and I wanted to know them all. I'd let my imagination run free. And, grandma usually would let me pick out a treasure before we'd leave. As a kid I was really into old Life magazines, I have quite a few from the 50's and 60's in storage somewhere.

Even though Grandma's passed, and the Life magazines are tucked in boxes I still love antiquing. The magic is still there. Each item still has a story, and my imagination still runs just a wildly as it always did. I stop at every wooden highchair to oooooh and ahhhh over it and try to think of someway that I could justify purchasing it. (even if I already have two that are really special) My biggest weakness however is vintage quilts. I love each and every one I see, weather it's tattered and torn or stitched perfectly at every seam. Each one has a story. A life of it's own. Each one was handmade. Each piece of fabric was gathered from somewhere for that quilt. Each quilt helped to warm a body. Was it a baby? A child? A mother and father? Grandmother or Grandfather? Who was it that loved and wrapped themselves in the warmth of these quilts? Where did they live. What's their story? Can they see their quilts keeping my littles and I warm on these chilly winter nights?

Ellie likes quilts too.
 It truly is endless. They are beautiful. I love them. And yesterday, I bought five. Yup, five. I couldn't resist. Okay, I guess I did resist two, but only because I already had five and I had to leave some for the next quilt lover, right? I've been high on quilts since yesterday afternoon. I fold and unfold them, lay them out just to stare at them, think about their pasts, and wonder what stories we will create in their futures. What sickness' will they cuddle my littles through, will they go with us on family picnics, which one will last long enough for my littles to have in their own homes one day, will my grandlittles snuggle warm and cozily down in them wondering about their past? Only time will tell, I suppose. For now though, I am am just happy that they are mine and that I get to add a little love to their stories.

I feel like the richest woman in the world. Yup, I'm really that high, on quilts.