Sunday, July 31, 2005

Dear Piper Jolie

I can hardly believe that you are 2 1/2 years old. You amaze me on a daily basis and bring such joy to my life.

I remember that night 2.5 years ago that I met you for the first time. It was like I had this feeling that I had someone to fight for and protect and that we were in this together. I had never felt something so heavy and so deep for anything or anyone. I was overflowing with love for you, a new link of love and I understood what "unconditional" meant.

You are so smart and clever. One of my favorite things is to watch you figure something out or discover something new. You pick things up very quickly and to our dismay that includes some of bad habits as well, so now we are more careful and deliberate in our words and actions. The other day we were in the car and you kept saying, "Mama, I see a stop sign. And another one. Look! there's another one." I thought , well, here is a learning experience and I asked you, "Piper, what shape is a stop sign?" We had gone over this before but only casually so I didn't think that you would remember. "Octagon."

You are a loving and sweet child. I had this fear in the back of my mind, well actually I talked about it with your father all the time, that you would fell abandoned when Finley arrived, pushed aside for this new thin that you wouldn't understand. I thought this would translate into you being angry and acting out against your sister and that I would have to constantly "police" you and watch what you were doing. How wrong I was to think those things. You love your baby sister so much and she loves you so much. None of us provoke a smile and laugh and excitement from Finley like you do just by entering the room. You are beginning to play together and you are so good about "using your words" to let Finn know what is ok and what is not ok. You take turns and you don't hold a grudge...not for very long anyway.

You are very affectionate and will offer a hug or a pat on the back and it melts my heart. I kiss you every chance I get for fear of the day when you will be embarrassed, but I think I'll still do it anyway. We have kisses and nose rubs and butterfly kisses. There are times when I think I could just squeeze you until you pop because I can't get enough.

You are a happy child. You sing when no one is listening and I love to hear your made up songs. I will always listen. You dance and jump and run and show us your muscles. You have the obnoxious smile and the smile I try to take a picture of when you aren't paying attention. There are times when you don't get your way and you make it known that you ARE NOT HAPPY. These times are few and we can usually get you to talk it through.

You LOVE to read and paint and draw. We sing together and dance together. You favorite thing to do at the park is to swing. You have mastered the potty (yea!) and you have a good sense of pride about your accomplishments. I love it when you say, "I did it!"

There are so many things that make you, "you." You know how to win me over and you know how to ask you daddy after I say no. You are my definition of joy. I am so happy that your sister has you to look up to as you both grow. You are a friend and a sister and a daughter and the poopinator. I love you, my bug.


one of my favorite images from our vacation. who is having the better time?

we're back

so we have returned from vacation and let's just say that it wasn't exactly how we had pictured it to be.

I will post more later including pictures but for now I am busy with the house and laundry and groceries and jason not being here because he left this morning to go to NYC. Yes, we returned last night and he left this morning and I'm sure it was to avoid certain house hold chores...not really. I feel so sorry for him...he has to go to boring NYC and eat at terrible restaurants and not have any fun at all...yeah, right.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

copy cats

jason and I were looking at some pictures I took yesterday and when we saw this

we decided to do our own stellar rendition of "The Piper Smile." Funny thing is that when i showed Piper the picture that I took of her she said to me: "Mama, that is not a happy face."

And here is Finn very excited, so excited in fact that right after this picture was taken she spontaneously combusted. Not really, but she was really excited.

I'm not the only one

So, around the time of my birthday, I registered for some gifts, as a joke, and people actually purchased gifts from this list, which was a little bit embarassing but also very thoughtful.

Jason made fun of me endlessly for making this list, but oh how the tables have turned. As i was browsing through someone's baby registry on Amazon, I came across a link for "Jason's Amazon Wishlist" and his Froogle Wishlist.

Yes, Jason has a registry.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Favorite Things

It's time for another Favorite Things post:

It's been a rough month but we leave for vacation in 3 days so that more than makes up for the difficult times.

1. ANTIBIOTICS! for me! for Jason! for the girls! Come on - everybody's doing it!

2. Flylady : she is changing my life one "zone" at a time.

3. Our coffeemaker: I did not become a grown up until I started needing coffee every morning.

4. Strep throat: although it has not been pleasant each of the 3 times I've gotten it, it has done wonders for my's the new fad diet!

5. Dinner and lunch with 2 different great couples that we actually think we could be friends with because they are not weird.

6. Reality TV: Brat Camp, Property Ladder, Miami Ink, Million Dollar Agents, What Not To Wear

7. DVR: Digital Video Recorder...without this, these reality shows would not be on the list of favorite things

8. These onesies for twins since they are in my near future ( a niece and nephew)

9. The Wootini from Outback goodness

10. This website

Thursday, July 14, 2005

They Say It's Your Birthday

Today is my brother, Matt's, birthday. He's my little brother, the one I endlessly bossed around, but hey he did what I told him...good boy!

Matt and I were both adopted and I remember the story my mom always tells that a few days after Matt came home I said to everyone, "Ok, can we give him back now because someone else needs a turn." Hey, at least I was willing to share...quite an accomplishment for a 2 year old.

We were referred to as "the little kids" in our family because our two older brothers were at lest 7 years older and they were "the big kids." Matt and I did not always get along but then again I don't seem to play well with others who try to take the spotlight from me so that about sums that up.

When Matt was born he was like 3 months premature and had all kinds of problems, they didn't think he would live. My dad was his pediatrician in the hospital before they air-lifted him to a major medical center. My dad didn't know then that Matt would become his son.

Matt had open heart surgery on his tiny little body. He suffered a stroke and was not supposed to live, but God had other plans for that baby. Who would have thought that he would graduate from high school and then graduate from college and then become a sports reporter for a newspaper (I found him the job, thank you very much)? Matt has had his fair share of struggles and I am so very proud of him for persevering through the difficult times to continue searching for the prize that God has for his life. He is the definition of a miracle.

All that's left is finding him the right girl, and I'm working on that but if you know anybody let me know, but remember they will be scrutinized by me because not just anyone is good enough for my baby brother.

Piper adores her uncle Matt and always wants to play with him and sort of bosses him around just like I used to do...good thing he had all that practice. I'm glad he has stuck around where we live because I know that if I ever needed anything I could call him and he would help, no matter what.


Happy Birthday to You
Happy Birthday to You
Happy Birthday dear Matt
Happy Birthday to You!

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

3 strikes




Why are these dates significant? These are the th
ree, yes three, times that I have tested positive for strep throat. I have been on now three different antibiotics and if this next round doesn’t work, I may have to have my tonsils removed which I am told is not the pleasant experience of all ice cream that it is when you are a child.

So I will be taking these pills three times a day
for ten days and then another antibiotic once a day for 30 days which means I will be on meds for 40 DAYS!


On a brighter note…we leave for our family vacat
ion in 10 days. We are staying in a lake house in North Carolina with all of my family for a week.

We will be boating and fishing and wakeboarding and maybe get to go white water rafting which is one of my favorite things to do in the whole wide web, I mean world.

More fun will be the time we spend with each other playing cards, telling stories and making dinner. We will be separated from the stresses of work and deadlines and be able to relax and breathe.

Which one

which one would you rather use for the rest of your life?

the same towel


the same toothbrush


Tuesday, July 12, 2005

We are roses in the garden

Today I was on my way to the doctor's office when a flower delivery van passed in front of me as I waited at a red light. I started to think about who was going to be on the receiving end of those beautiful blooms. Maybe it was a new mom that just got home from the hospital with her bundle of fingers and toes. Or maybe it was a husband sending flowers for an anniversary, maybe it was someone's birthday, maybe someone's funeral.

I just kept imagining the look on the face of the person as they opened the door to find their special surprise waiting to fill their home with beauty. Ready to be a reminder for something happy or sad, an "I'm sorry" or an "I love you."

The last time Jason sent me flowers was right before we went on vacation to Curacao. It was such an act of thoughtfulness on his part it made me cry. He had been working a serious amount of hours at work (don't I remember them saying they were a family-oriented company? RIGHT) and we were at each other's throats, but this simple gesture made a big difference in me realizing that he understood the stress that was our life at the time.

be thoughtful every once in a while and send somebody a bouquet of "I'm thinking about you." I think it almost feels better to be the giver than the recipient.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

My girls

Sometimes it gets really crazy in our house in the afternoons. Some people call it "the witching hour" and for good reason. It's in times like these that I am trying to pick up the day's mess and get dinner started and amuse my children at the same time. The only solution? Music. Very. Loud. MUSIC.

I don't know if it shocks them that it is so loud, or that they think I am some crazy woman because I'm dancing all over the place, but it is probably one of my favorite times of the day with them because we laugh and dance and all of the whining stops because, well, its music.

We listen to everything from U2 to Motown to Kelly Clarkson to The Cure to The Beach Boys to The Beastie Boys. Something you probably won't hear, though, is country unless it's The Dixie Chicks. Currently, Piper's favorite song is Hollaback Girl and she loves the "bananas, B-A-N-A-N-A-S!" She always says, "play the bamana song, mama."

It makes a difference not only in them, but in me as well. It adds a light-heartedness that is not always so easy to accomplish when it has been a crazy day. I can't describe the joy I see in their faces, the energy that flows through our home, the imagination that creates before my eyes. These times, they make my heart overflow.

Date Night

Last night Jason and I actually had a "date night." The "date night" is an endangered species around here so it was definitely an advance in a species surviving for us to be able to go out to dinner without worrying about babies.

It's funny though, because by the time the kids were fed, bathed, and ready for bed...and then we were showered and I was prettied with face and hair, we were all but too exhausted to even want to go anywhere. Then the rain started pouring down and then sideways due to the hurricane that was looming off of the other coast of Florida blowing is "feeder bands" over to our side of the state. Not the ideal romantic evening that I had imagined. Nevertheless, we persevered and went to dinner.

While we were waiting for our table we happened upon some old friends that we hadn't seen or spoken with since Finley was born 8 months ago. We had fallen into that black hole that is parenting and it was like we had all but vanished. I think it's very difficult, unless you make an extreme effort, to keep up with friends that are just not in the same place in their life as your family.

They spend their time working, advancing their careers, traveling, going to concerts, sleeping, working out...everything that basically we don't do anymore. Our time is spent fitting things in between nap times, making sure there are enough diapers, wiping hands, mouths, and little bottoms, cleaning up when "mama, I made a mess," and doing all this while still be as animated as a cartoon character.

Not only is it difficult to relate to their lifestyle, but I am so sure that they absolutely love hearing about all the mess that is our children. I am not saying that there is anything wrong with either one of these lifestyles, I am just saying that it is too much work to worry about not boring people when you are always talking about your kids. If you are a chef I'm sure that food is one of your main topics, and so being a mom, my kids are my main topic. That is not all there is of me, but it is a main dish.

Anyway...this new FlyLady thing is kicking my butt, in a good way. I have so much more pride in what I accomplish, even if it is just a babystep. I did slack off a bit last night, though, because it 's kind of difficult to shine a sink after 3 martinis, you know? But my oh my were they goood martinis!

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

reality blogging

this just happened:

I bribed Piper with chocolate to let me pick a humongous booger out of her nose.

Now her nose is booger free and she has melted chocolate all over her face and hands.

Beautiful Girls

We went to the park this morning before it got too hot and I took some pictures you can check them out here. Piper had fun on the swings and the jungle gym, it amazes me how each time we go to the park she seems to be able to do more and more, climb higher and higher, swing faster and faster.

Finn is still a little small for anything except the baby swing which she does not really enjoy so she hangs out in the stroller in the shade with some toys.

I love taking them to the park and seeing them thinking about things, figuring them out, running around, learning how to move their bodies and manipulate their space. Piper is jumping all the time now and dances whenever the idea of music is in the air. Finley just this morning started to dance as I sang the "clean-up" song of all things. She was swaying back and forth in her highchair and smiling and squealing. These are times that I want to remember and think about and savor. There are always the "big" moments in our life but is the ordinary times that define us and mold us into who we are.

On a different note, I have started a new system to get this house under control and I really like it; it has already started to make a difference. My sink is shiny!

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Who's afraid of the Big Bad Wolf?

Did you have any childhood fears? Things that kept you up at night with their anxious thoughts? When I was a little girl, my bedroom was very small. It actually was very cozy and always messy as I admit that I am a messy person. My bed was this built in that was high up off the ground surrounded by walls on three sides with a small window on one wall. I never, never, NEVER, looked out that window...the shade was always drawn and I made sure that I could not see anything through the sides and nothing could see me.

That was one of my childhood fears. You see, there was this scary, weird neighbor we had that never came out of his house. His name, Mr. McCurly and I believe he had a wife but I never saw either of them. My fear revolved around the idea that this man would somehow climb up on top of the roof and pear at me through this window. It was a fear I had every night when I went to bed and everytime I would wake up in the middle of the night I would do my best to make it look like there was no one sleeping in my bed, but just a pile of covers in the event that he would look through the window, there would be no reason to try to sneak in through that window...not that he ever could because the window had been painted shut about a thousand years ago.

Looking back I do see how irrational this fear was, but I think that if I were to sleep in that bed again I would have the same fear.

We have been dealing with fears in our home lately, and not just the ones about the monster under the bed. Piper has been waking at least once a night and I think it is due to nightmares. She has been saying things like, "do you see that monster/dinosaur mommy? It's scary" And we went to a puppet show of The 3 Little Pigs and she was introduced to the "Big Bad Wolf" and now makes remarks about that.

Jason and I have had our own fears as well. Grown up fears. About two months ago Jason was "terminated" from his position at the company that I am not allowed to talk about on my blog. It has been extremely stressful and we have been afraid of our life. I wish that I could go into more detail but it is out of my hands at this point. And last night Jason said something about loving each other but not being in-love with each other like we were when we were dating...oh so afraid of where that was going and where it came from.

Yesterday was the 4th of July. We spent the weekend at the beach playing in the sand, swimming in the ocean and making sure that the girls had on enough sunscreen...oh how I love the smell of babies with sunscreen slathered all over. We were having a great time until these morons decided to light off these huge fireworks in the dunes right in front of our condo aiming them just so they barely missed flying through our balcony. Finn slept through the entire ordeal, Piper was terrified. shaking.

She wanted to go inside desperately, so I sat with her and reassured her and we watched the fireworks on tv. She said "fireworks are pretty on tv" "I like the big ones on tv"

It made me think once again about my role as her mother. I will protect you, love. I would never let anything intentionally harm you. You are so special to me that your needs will come before mine and I will keep you out of harm's way. There is nothing that could separate you from my love and I will guard you from evil.

Reminds me of someone else that wants to do the same for His children.

Like I didn't know

Piper and I were sharing a frozen pizza for lunch today and to divide the pieces up I cut the pizza with a pair of scissors.

Piper became very agitated and looked at me with a scrunched-up face and said:

"No Mommy, we cut paper!"