Miles Right Now. #nablopomo

Fearless.  Stubborn.  Social.

This is how I would describe my son as he’s gearing up to turn one.

He is growing up so very fast and as his personality comes out more and more when is apparent is that he is a bundle of contradictions.  He is fearless, regularly receiving accident reports at school for attempting feats outside of his skill level.  At the same time, he has been taking steps for a whole month now, but shows very little interest in making walking a full-time thing.  He walks mostly when he’s distracted or when he thinks no one is watching.  He’s tentative and brash at the same time.

He eats anything, preferring big flavors.  No thank you on plain pasta but put a little balsamic vinegar on it, and he will eat it with both hands.  Last week he surprised me me chomping down on some red bell pepper and yesterday he wanted to try the prosciutto I was preparing for his birthday party and he loved it.   He goes bananas for ice cream but will eat beets every day for lunch.

Yesterday I came into the front room to find Miles standing on the landing of our 2nd floor apartment.  My heart stopped as I imagined him trying to “walk” down those stairs (Luckily I got to him in time!).  We thought my father-in-law had accidentally left the the door a little open, and Miles took advantage of the opportunity.  Then that night Miles goes over to the front door and opens the door.  Like it was no big deal.  I’m horrified.  My husband is proud.  Our door is now forever deadbolted.  

He laughs when other people are laughing.  He is easier to deal with during the “witching hour” before bedtime if a guest comes over.  If he’s fussy, I’ll take him to Target because he loves looking at people and flirting with them in the aisles.

His hair is turning course and curly like his Dad’s, with my auburn color.  He takes of his socks every single morning on the way to school, no matter how cold it is.

On Friday’s coffee dates are a family affair.  Miles and I share an almond croissant.  Mike and I chat while Miles tries to stare at people until the give-in and start paying attention to him.  

I can’t believe he’s almost a year old.  A year ago tomorrow I woke up in labor.  Best thing that’s ever happened to me.

A house, a house, a house. #NaBloPoMo

Day 2: If you could live anywhere, where would it be?

We live in an apartment.  A 2 bedroom, 1 bath apartment with a tiny kitchen and stained carpets.  We stay because it fits us (in terms of size, not in terms of the stained carpets) and because the location cannot be beat.  We’re in our town’s towntown, where we can stroll to parks, restaurants, coffee, and even the library.  

Whenever there is a holiday event or street fair, we can simply walk there.  The neighborhood I live in is called “Old Town” and besides our complex, the area is full of cute houses with amazing old trees lining the streets.

If I could, I’d live here forever, but in a house.  Where everyone can walk to school and the neighborhoods shut down for block parties.  It feels like a movie, or something I hear happening in the mid-west.  Here in California, the suburbs can be a little more on the bland side.  There is character here.

I’d love to be in the house we could make our “forever” home.  Paint and a backyard.  Storage enough for tubs of seasonal decorations.

Day 1: Favorite Quote #NaBloPoMo

(I’m going to quietly come back to this space as if I haven’t been gone for six months.  Babies, amiright?  Time sinks.  I’ll let you know all about everything in the world in the next couple of weeks.  I’ve missed this little space so much lately.)

Day 1: Tell us your favorite quotation and why.

Love one another, but make not a bond of love:
Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.
Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.
Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf
Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone,
Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.

Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
And stand together yet not too near together:
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.

Khalil Gibran

 If I could I’d have this whole poem tattoo’d on my person.  It was incredibly powerful as I started my relationship with my Hubs, a reminder that I didn’t have to give up myself to be in love.  Mike was the first person I ever dated that I felt like myself throughout the “falling in love” process.  I didn’t mold into the person I was dating; and he loved me for it.  I knew I was, he like who I was, I liked him as he was.  Pretty fantastic place to begin.

Then came baby.  (A new tagline for my blog perhaps )  Lately, with an almost one year old, I find myself coming out of a daze.  It’s not that I’m not happy, that’s far from the truth.  What I can say is that I’m not quite “myself”.  At the end of the day, after giving all of me to a job, a baby, and a marriage…. I don’t have much left for me.  My job, baby, and marriage have thrived under this model, but I’ve become a little less sparkly.  I miss being sparkly.  Sigh.  Tell me that’s totally normal for a first time mom.

My life is full of so much amazing things, but to be the strongest pillar I can be, I need to carve some more time out my day for my self.  I think that writing again could be the first step.  (Followed by some bubble baths and regular baby-free friend time.)family photo

 

Thanksgiving Love.

Wow.Who knew NaBloPoMo would kill any desire I had to write for a week? Anyone else feel that way?

Alright, hello, good morning, Happy Monday. This “vacation” was way not long enough. It was full of running around, family obligations, and friendly visits… and just enough sleeping in I guess. So that’s good.

Thanksgiving was nice this year. Now that I am here, I didn’t have to travel to be with family, which is a nice change. I got up and leisurely made apple-sausage stuffing– and realized I didn’t have a spice. So, I called my Grams and ran over in my pajama’s to borrow sage. As I was driving over I was struck by how freaking amazing it is that I can just run over to my grandparents house in my pajamas. I love it. I love that I do not have to get on an airplane to visit my family.

Thanksgiving was wonderful. As displayed here by our turkey, that was cooked on a rotisserie and tasted like heaven.
The day after Thanksgiving I made my mom come over to decorate for Christmas. I have been kind of nervous about Christmas here, waking up Christmas morning seems very adult and weird… especially after three years of waking up at Ryan’s parent’s house. It’s not that I think this Christmas is going to be bad, it’s just going to be different. And sometimes I am not so great with change.

My strategy is to hype up Christmas so much, that eventually I will believe it. So, Friday was spend blasting Christmas tunes, drinking a gingerbread latte, and decorating my apartment.




I still need a tree topper, the one that I had purchased last year is WAY to heavy for my little tree… so let’s vote, shall we?


19. Breaking the No-Cooking Streak

I have talked about how I have really not cooked since moving here. I have really maxed out with a grilled cheese sandwich. I couldn’t justify cooking for “just me” after 2 years of cooking so many meals for “us”. Not just us, my repertoire of recipes is a reflection of who I was cooking for… I learned his favorite recipes, learned to make things the way his mom did.. that sort of thing.

Anyways. Last night I cooked. I cooked a casserole from my Aunt for the lunch club today and I made an apple pie for a potluck dinner tonight. I know I need to get over the not-cooking-for-myself thing… and I will. But it is nice to cook for people again.

The chili-cornbread casserole is insanely easy. Probably should even count as cooking.. there are ways to make it more complicated… by, you know, making the chili or cornbread batter from scratch. I however used Trader Joe’s turkey chili, and Trader Joe’s cornbread mix…. you put the chili on the bottom, put the cornbread batter on top. Bake at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes… done.

The crumb apple pie was an actual baking experience… and if I could chose between putting my energy into cooking or baking, I would pick baking every time.

Caramel Apple Crumb Pie

Filling:
1 tablespoon butter or stick margarine
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
9 cups sliced peeled Granny Smith apple (about 2 3/4 pounds)
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons lemon juice

Topping:
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons chilled butter or stick margarine, cut into small pieces
2 1/2 tablespoons caramel sundae syrup

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To prepare filling, melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Combine 1/2 cup brown sugar and cinnamon. Add sugar mixture and apples to skillet; cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Remove from heat; stir in 3 tablespoons flour and lemon juice. Spoon into prepared crust.

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To prepare topping, lightly spoon 1/4 cup flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife.

Combine flour and 1/4 cup brown sugar in a bowl; cut in 2 tablespoons butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal.

Drizzle syrup over apple mixture; sprinkle topping over syrup.

Bake at 375° for 30 minutes or until apples are tender. Cool on a wire rack.

The next step is to impress my new friend with my baking prowess. :)

17. The one with some Angelou wisdom.

So Nora posted a Maya Angelou quote on her blog today.. and it got me weeding through some of my favorite ones. And I wanted to share:

When people show you who they are, believe them.

—Maya Angelou

Let me tell you why this speaks to me. When I was in college, I went to a church where the pastor gave us some homework. He said to go ask our best friend, the person who knows us the best, to honestly tell us what our three biggest faults are. I still remember verbatim what Erin told me.

  1. I am too trusting. I don’t protect my heart as well as I should. I am not as careful when believing people and give too much of my self and effort before people really deserve it.
  2. I don’t stand up for myself. I don’t like confrontation, and can mostly rationalize anything to be partly my fault.
  3. I struggle with low confidence, sometimes being WAY worse than others.

So the believing other people when they tell me who they are is a very important lesson to learn. And not just to say that when people are jerks… sometime that’s really what they are… but I have been known to BLATANTLY ignore what people tell me about them… convinced I see something or know something that they don’t. For example, Ryan. When we started dating, we broke up twice in three months because he repeatedly told me that he was not ready for a serious girlfriend. He told me he wasn’t ready to even meet the girl he would marry… but I was convinced that I knew better.

When people are jerks. When people are selfish and unkind… than maybe they’re just selfish and unkind.. and luckily there are enough selfless and kind people in the world to make up for it.

14. Beauty….

Have you been over to this site? Live inspired. Such a great message and I love every single thing available… here are a few of my favorites… I just love the idea of surrounding myself with positive words. I have things on the walls… fortune cookie fortunes taped to my speakers…. every where, a positive affirmation.


13. Ode to my Latte

Coffee never tasted so good.

Went out last night with a massive group of people in downtown Palo Alto.

We had dinner at Paxti’s, which is AMAZING Chicago style pizza.

Then we hit up The Rose and Crown (which was a really cool pub with all imported beers)

Then, The Old Pro: Complete with electric bull
Finally we ended up at another place where we all dance and laughed a whole lot until 1am.

It was so much fun. Totally worth the sleep deprivation today.

11/11 11:11 I wish……

I wish….
  • that I never forget what it is like to lose everything.
  • that over the next 6 months, I really figure out who I am, what I want, and where I want to be… so that I can find someone who fits into that.
  • that everyone gets a time in their lives where they are broken and are force to rebuild– but come out so much better, stronger, and happier than they ever thought possible.
  • that people loved a little more, and judged a little less.
  • that no one would be allergic to cats.
  • the Modern Family goes on for 18 more seasons.
  • that people educated themselves before speaking so assuredly.
  • that people accepted differences. We’re not made that same, we’re not designed to be the same.
  • that Nora would get her butt out here so we can do amazing things like Union Square, Naan & Curry, and the Golden Gate Bridge. Oh, and that she feels all the love in the world. Cause that’s important, especially for those who life others… they should never feel alone, abandoned, or isolated.
  • that there were an extra hour in the day that I could use to sleep.
  • that everyone finds a path they are happy with. A job, a passion, a love. Things that matter.
  • we all laughed more. It’s so easy to be bogged down by the day-to-day. The to-do list. The obligation. But their is beauty everywhere. If we are spending a day not realizing that, we’re wasting it. Go find something that moves you, every day. Fill a file with pictures that calm you soul, a journal with words that speak to you… be fulfilled. It’s your job to do it. No one is going to come and complete you. Complete yourself. Love yourself. Find joy, for yourself.
  • that cookie dough didn’t have calories. Just saying.
  • that salad things didn’t go bad so quickly… if I had a dollar for every produce item that went bad on me? I’d have, like, at least $12.
  • that people shrived to see the silver-lining of situations instead of taking the victim-position or relishing in the cynical like it was original and amazing.
  • we all realized the only thing we can control, is ourselves. Our attitudes, our reaction, the power we give others. I am done being a victim.

Do you want me to tell you something really subversive? Love is everything it’s cracked up to be. That’s why people are so cynical about it. It really is worth fighting for, being brave for, risking everything for. And the trouble is, if you don’t risk anything, you risk even more.
–Erica Jong