Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Well That's Weird


- Not having to buy gas every other day. Actually going almost two weeks without having to buy gas. That just rocks.
- Not hand-making my Christmas cards for the first time in as many years as I can remember. Probably in as many years as I have been sending them.
- Raising a toddler in other peoples' homes. No matter how "kid-friendly," it's just never as kid-friendly or "your kid"-safe as your own home would be.

- A three hour drive at 60 miles an hour (180ish miles) seems so much quicker and shorter than a 3 hour drive at 15 miles an hour (70ish miles).

- Not spending all day, every day online. And not really wanting to anymore. (But still missing blogging because there are a million things I want to get out there, I'm just too lazy to make the time to do it.)

Friday, November 14, 2008

Fearless

Now that I am finally caught up on all those stinkin' questions, I can start posting guilt-free again. Things like more pictures of insane things my child does when I turn my head for five seconds.
She took one more step and then realized she was kinda stuck. But that she got that high by herself was enough for me. I think they have a quota for daily heart attacks for their parents.  
She made it all the way to the top by herself on this one. A number of times.
They're never too young to put 'em to work, right?

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Project Say Something: The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face. ...Yeah, So Doesn't Work for Me


So.... I really can't. Dan and I grew up in the same small town, went to all of the same schools so I know we knew of each other ages before we knew each other. Instead, all I have are some of the first memories I have of him. He says Chemistry when I was a junior in high school. All I remember about Chemistry is how much I hated it and how bad I was at it, not some geeky guy who would always try to sit by me. No, my first real memory of him was at the end of my junior year when I was half-assed running for Student Body President for my senior year. We were in debate together and he had the brilliant idea of doing something with my campaign slogan to do with Jessica Rabbit. I don't remember what it was, just that he made some fliers and posters with the association - whatever it was - and hung them around the school. That was when we first started to get to know each other. Then, school ended and I came back as a senior and got completely wrapped up in someone else, so much so that no one else or nothing else existed so I have no memory of him whatsoever til after I graduated and we started hanging out in the same circle of friends late in the summer. I remember going over to his house with friends to watch movies and we just started talking and totally missed the movies and pretty much forgot anyone else was there. Though it was still a while before anything went anywhere. When did I realize I liked him? "Liked him" liked him? When a mutual friend was being an ass and making fun of him for giving me concert tickets and Dan said, "If you saw how miserable she was every day, you'd do something just to put a smile on her face too." (Which totally wasn't true, he wouldn't have, he was my arch nemesis, he wouldn't have done anything to make me smile, though he did admit I was one of the only things he'd ever sell his soul for - so... whatever. But that's neither here nor there.) That's when I thought, "Huh, maybe there IS more to this guy." Good lord. That was 15 years ago.

Project Say Something: Much Better at the Sins than the Virtues


My favorite sin would be Lust.
Desire. Want. Warped/heightened sense of need. What's not to love?


Hands-down, I am the most guilty of Envy.
It's a sickness. I want everything everyone else has, everything I can't have and I hate those who have it when I don't.


The Virtues is a little more difficult. My favorites, I think, are Courage and Love. Because I'm not really so great at those. I find them very admirable qualities in others because I am missing them. (No, I don't envy that, I respect it. There's a difference!) My daughter has certainly helped me with love, I've been getting much better at it. But I don't know that I will ever be as good as I want to be. I don't do too well with Restraint either but it's probably in last place if I were to prioritize the virtues. Prudence, Justice and Hope are probably the ones I am the best with. Sometimes I do wish that it were not so much the case, but they're good ones to have, I think. They've kept me out of a lot of trouble and I believe have made me a responsible person. I'm okay being the responsible one (now. Maybe not when I was younger. But I am now). Faith is one I wish I had more of. I'm just not sure in what.

Project Say Something: Life on Repeat


If you could go back to any point in your life - not to change anything but just to experience/enjoy it/whatever - again, when would it be?
I think it would be my senior year in high school. Not because high school was anything great, hello! It was high school. But because that's when I started to really figure out who I am. And I learned it was okay to worry about me and care about me and that it was okay to be a little selfish and to look out for myself and to truly stand up for myself. It was also the first time I really recognized - or acknowledged, maybe - what happiness felt like. It was a big issue for me that year for some reason. Very focused on how happy I was not. And then one night, after a long conversation about it with some friends, I remember driving around in the dark in a snow storm. The night was so bright and the world was covered in a fresh layer of bright white snow and in driving around in that, in seeing everything covered so perfectly and beautifully, I felt - maybe recognized - for the first time ever a feeling of complete content, that everything was okay and right and beautiful. Even me. To have that exact feeling again - ESPECIALLY right now - would be awesome. That was when I started the never-ending process of self-evaluation, of always searching for ways to make me better. And I realized it was okay if I cared about that, about me instead of everyone else first. It was the year I did the most growing up (though I am the first one to admit to the people I knew then that it certainly wasn't enough) and the most changing. There were a lot of wonderful things that happened that year, and a number of not so wonderful things as well. But I would go back to it just to remind myself when I need it that I am worth something, that I am good at something, that there simply is value there when I lose it. It's one time in my life that that all become very clear, very easily to me.

Project Say Something: Comfort Foods


What are your comfort foods? And why?

Comfort food? I'm not much of a "comfort food" person. I'm more of a food is comfort type person. (Can't yah tell?!?) Seriously, I try to think of a food that I associate with comfort, one that reminds me of childhood or home, or just that old comfy-home-cookin' feeling and I think Cracker Barrell. But I think that's more advertising. I don't even like most the food there. Spaghetti maybe? It was one of my favorite foods growing up. No! I know! Tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches. With pickles. That's it. Nothing is better on a rainy, gloomy, fall day. Of course, it sounds absolutely terrible right now, but pretty sure, the next time I'm bored on a cold, rainy day, that'll be exactly what I want.

Project Say Something: I'm Sorry. So Sorry.


Here I go again. And this time - I *will* get caught up!

This is such a good question and I have had weeks to think about it and I just cannot come up with an answer I feel is as good an answer as the question deserves. Though I am sure there is a large (very large - I probably can't count that high large) number of letters of apology I could and probably should write.
Dear Shane,
I know you miss us. I know we had all just started to become really good friends. I wish we didn't have to move away too. I am sorry we left you out there alone. I'm sorry we let you guys get so close to Madeleine and then just ripped her away from you. And I'm really sorry I suck at conversation so I never IM you and you think you've been completely abandoned and forgotten. You'll never be forgotten. Though I can't promise about the abandoned, I kind of suck at being a good friend.
Dear Dan,

I'm really sorry you didn't get what you wanted yesterday. I'm also sorry you're in there watching a movie alone because you think this TV is too small and I think that couch isn't comfy and would rather stay in here and type silly blog posts. (Also, it's a sad movie and I don't like sad movies, sorry.)

To Just About Every Friend I've Ever Had,

I wish I were better at being a friend than I am. I'm sorry I so easily let myself fall away and the friendship die. That I am not willing to take the time and initiative to keep the friendship going - especially now that it's so easy, given email and instant messaging. I don't even have to pick up the phone or leave my house and I still can't make the effort. And I'm especially sorry to those of you from whom I've just walked away without any notice or explanation or anything. Especially when you were very, very close friends. I'm just not very good at small talk or initiating or carrying conversations. I'm really kind of boring and I let it get the best of me. Even at the cost of some amazing people. I deeply apologize for that. I am trying to work on it. I know it's a little late for some but hopefully it prevents others.

And lastly,
Dear Mom and Dad,

Holy Toledo. I am SO very sorry for all the ridiculously STUPID things I did growing up. I know I've said it before and I know I'll say it a million more times. More to hopefully avoid karma than anything, really! But man, I am sure sorry for all the unnecessary insanity and chaos and drama I caused in my youth. Aren't you so glad (and completely and totally surprised and shocked all to hell) that I turned out so well? (Who'd have ever guessed?? Not you, that's for sure.)

With deepest regret and apologies to you all,

Kim

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Listening to Myself Through the Mouth of a Two-Year Old


I am sitting here listening to the toddler boss the 6-lb Chihuahua around the house.
"Come here, Peko! Go upstairs. Now. Peko, Come. One! Two! Three! Now!"

Oh my.

I so need to be a better parent! She's kinda bossy!!

(Even though it is funny and cute as hell.)

Thursday, November 6, 2008

The Kid Must Think It's New Year's Eve or Something


Imagine another set of stairs that looks just like this.

Imagine a toddler on this set of stairs patting a pile of this paper on to her head while giggling.

Imagine walking up these stairs into a bedroom that is not yours to find the paper shredder tipped over and half emptied across the bedroom floor.

Imagine glancing up to see the shelves of the closet in the bedroom that isn't yours covered in piles of this shredded paper.

Do you laugh? Cry? Run and hide and swear she isn't yours? Or do you kick yourself for not thinking to grab the camera much more quickly?

This is the kind of thing that happens when you leave a mischievous toddler to her own devices for three minutes. She starts out chasing the poor kitty and doggie to discover something much more fun, clever and creative.

Note to self: Never let the quiet time of an unseen toddler exceed 30 seconds.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Li'l Bumble Bee

This was the first year she actually got to go out and do anything in her costume. Before now, we didn't have the time or the places to go for it to matter. We were pretty excited to have the time AND the places to take her this year. Then I got hit with the flu (which was tons of fun in case you're wondering) and she decided to skip her nap for the day. By the time it was trick-or-treating time, she was a demon-bee and no fun at all. Though no matter how grouchy she was, she had no problem lighting up for every new person to "look!" at her adorable little dress. She was very proud of it. I would have to agree with her, it is pretty cute.
But next year, she's most definitely napping first!


Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Project Say Something: My Dream Do-Over


The list I could make here would be huge. I'm not one of those people to tout "I have no regrets," or "everything I've done has led me to where I am so I wouldn't change a thing." Load of crap. There will always be things I wish I could change, no matter where it landed me in the end.

I wouldn't have flaked out and given up during the National Qualifying debate tournament my senior year.
I wouldn't have cared so much about what people thought of me because those people don't matter in the long run anyway.
I wouldn't have left Salt Lake the first time I moved out there.
I wouldn't have just walked away from countless friendships and people because it wasn't easy or convenient for me.
I wouldn't have completely destroyed the entire rest of my life the summer of '97.
I wouldn't have waited so long to have kids.
I wouldn't have quit school without getting the damn degree I've probably paid for three times over by not getting one.
I wouldn't let myself get beaten down time and time again.
I would have traveled a whole lot more when I was a whole lot younger.
I would let toxic relationships die.
I would be more honest and speak my mind a whole lot more.
I would tell people how I really feel, not what they want to hear or are afraid of hearing.
I would have wasted a lot less time in an absolutely miserable situation because I was terrified of the alternative (hey, I'm there now and it's not so bad. I wasted 6 months for that.)


But the number one thing I would change if given the chance to go back and do so - I know there are a lot of answers I should have for this, and there are some answers some people would say would be better - but the one thing I would change, in a heartbeat, given everything else that has happened (read: stupid decisions I've made), I NEVER would have left my job in March.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Project Say Something: I Have Good Qualities, Too. Really.


Negative. Angry. Untrusting. Judgmental. Worrier. Whiner. Allow myself to be taken advantage of. Allow myself to be manipulated. Lacking ambition. Non-committal. No will-power. Procrastinator. Hypocritical. Bitchy. Impatient. Unrealistic expectations. Inconsiderate. Push-over. Paranoid.

Oh. Wait.

Just one?

That one would be how indecisive I am.

Project Say Something: My Movie Life


I am going to finally try to get caught up on these. It's been a while. There are a few to get through. Bear with me.

Way back when this question was asked, my answer was The Devil Wears Prada. However, now, I'm going to have to go with Nightmare Before Christmas.

I know, you're thinking, "huh? how?"

I hear this question at least 500 times a day.

Family Fun


I sat down to type up a post about the fun few days Li'l Miss M and I spent at my sister's house in Ogden. Because I love to procrastinate, I did so by reading up on a few blogs. Seems my sister beat me to it. And because I am also lazy, I'll just send you her way to read about our fun few days with them. In a nutshell - a lot of toddler Rock Band and some pumpkins.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Homesick for a Place That was Never Intended to be "Home"


Four years ago, if someone would have told me it would be harder for me to leave Virginia than it was for me to leave Utah, I would have called him insane. He (or she) would not have been. I fell madly in love with Virginia. I won't lie, it wasn't love at first sight but it grew slowly and passionately over time. It was inevitable that it would end, I knew our stay there was limited. The pull of family has always been strong for us and it's very important to both of us that our child know her family.
When I was at the height of wanting out of DC, Dan called me and asked what I thought about potentially trying Vernal, just resetting a bit, get a good chance to get completely out of debt, have time with family, and all the other bells and whistles he touted on that call. My response was this: I would give *anything* to get out of DC, ANYTHING! But not that, NOT that.

You see where that got me? I temporarily warmed up to the idea (I guess I really did want out of DC *that* bad) and made room for the idea to be further explored. The second it became a "decision," I knew that was not what I had wanted. And now, here I am. Longing for the life I had, the life we had created for the three of us, the friends we made, the routines we set, the space we had but maybe not the insanity of the last few months. I am not sure of the trade off's or what's better or worse. I just know I desperately miss what I know I'll never get again for *my* family. But now we have our families around us, so we'll just see where we go from here.

I'll be posting a bit backwards for a while, I have a lot to get out there but needed to get this out there first so we'll just start here and go back over the last couple weeks.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

I Think I Have a Problem


Two large boxes worth.

I should maybe wear some of them every so often.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

"Careful What You Wish For"


When we moved to Virginia, we figured it would be a 3-5 year stay. That was 4 years ago. Two years ago we decided we wanted to get home soon-ish so our families could know our kid and vice versa. One year ago we decided we really loved it here. Four months ago we started making efforts to actually head back. A week ago the decision was made to do it. Next week we do it. It was the ultimate goal, what we had wanted, and yet... Not like this, not this quickly. I am a bit terrified, a lot unprepared, and so very, very sad to be leaving this new life we've created for ourselves. We have made some amazing friends out here, met some of the very best people I've ever met in my life and I will miss all of them them terribly. We're leaving a lot behind that we love and enjoy. But we know we want to be close to family.
So I am packing up our house this week for us to trek back across the country and start over all over again.

Yikes.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

All I Can Do is Keep Breathing


There are so many directions I want to take this post. For the last 6 months, this quote has been able to sum up my life:
"The only pride in her workday was not that it had been lived, but that it had been survived."

(Funny that the book that I have been fighting with for 15 years can, in any way, sum up my life)

I am glad to say that is not my life any more. I no longer have that job - or any job for that matter. Which is, of course, terrifying for so many reasons. I don't want to sound flippant, I do recognize the doom and gloom, the gravity and reality of the situation in this economy and in my life. But at the same time, I cannot deny the sense of relief. In less than one day, my entire demeanor has drastically improved - I am already finding pieces of myself. Pieces I thought were lost. I may not have a job, but I have my soul back. Hence the ability to post again. It was a very short-lived break. I had expected it to be much longer. I indicated I was taking a brief pause because too much was happening that I couldn't get a grasp on, things just kept going wrong. So it seems a bit odd that yet another - a HUGE - step in the direction of "bad shit keeps happening to us" would be something that made all that a bit better. It was that "step" that made *me* better. I have no idea what I am going to do now. I have absolutely no idea how we will get by or where we'll end up. This should just amplify the fear, the frustration, the discouragement I have been feeling lately. Difference is, now I have the will to care. I was so angry and bitter and hateful and cynical and miserable before that I just couldn't allow myself to be optimistic, or even try to be. Now I have the energy to pick up the pieces and try to put them back together.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Just Breathe


I, like so many others, was taught "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything." Now granted, I, like so many others, rarely live it. However, when it gets to a point where you find you have no interest to say anything to anyone because you're just swimming in a pool of uncontrollable absurdity and all you can do is bitch about it, maybe it's time to shut up. When you get to the point you find no joy or motivation or interest in anything, when you've reached your limit of optimism and hope and it's all dashed leaving nothing but bitter anger and hate, maybe it's time to take a break from feeling like you have to care and just take care of yourself. So much shit has hit the fan and continues to hit the fan that I really believe I have reached my breaking point. So. My point. I know posting here is sporadic on a good day but... it's been exceptionally worse lately and I will cite my absolute inability to see much to care about sharing or discussing as the reason. So along those lines, I am going to be taking an official break for a little while. Until I can get my head above water, my feet back underneath me, dig myself out of this enormous hole, find other clich├ęs to hurl at you, or at least find some light at the end of this very long tunnel, I'll be quiet. I won't say silent because maybe once in a while I'll throw something out there. I know I don't have a lot of readers, mostly family checking in on the kid and the PSS bunch reading those topics, so it's obviously not a huge deal. I'm just letting those few of you who do read know. I'm sure I'll collect things to post and will definitely catch-up on all of the PSS topics but I just need to be MIA for a little while. Officially. So I don't feel guilty about not getting something new up, or finding the cute pictures to share, or whatever. I'll be back. Sooner probably than later. I just need to clean out some cobwebs in my brain.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Project Say Something: Zoom Zoom Vroooom Woah!


I think I threw this question out there just so I could go on and on about my new favorite show on television. And that show would be Top Gear. I know! Who'd have ever guessed - me? a car show? No way! Well, I'm here to tell you, oh, yes, WAY. Probably just because I have a bit of a crush on Richard Hammond. (Of course that would be the reason, it couldn't possibly have anything to do with the fact that I've laughed so hard while watching it that I've cried or that they had David Tennant as a guest or that they do some really stupid amazing things with moving vehicles.)
As for my answer... When I dream, I tend to dream BIG. And I mean REALLY big. If it's a dream, why the hell not go all out, right?

Let's talk fast, sexy, absolutely-nothing-subtle-about-it-whatsoever, sleek, did I mention fast? Or sexy? I did? Well let's make sure it's completely clear. Fast. Sexy. Okay, we can move on then.

First up is the Bugatti Veyron. On first thought, you know, it really is incredibly ugly. But there is something so very sexy and simply mean-looking about this car. And I love it.

If you're going to see these cars, you need to see what they can do. Plain and simple. (Youtube has disabled embedding for the videos, but I promise, they're so very worth it.)

Next is the Ferrari F430. Simply (no, there's nothing "simple" about it) sleek and sexy.

Then the Maserati Quattroporte. Look! Sleek and sexy and a family car! What? It has 4 doors!

The McLaren F1 was my very first "dream car." I loved this car long before I even met my husband (the only reason I know a Ford from a Chevy or a Ferrari from a Porsche (okay, that's a slight exaggeration but I think you get the idea)). This was the first car I saw and thought, "Holy WOW! That's beautiful!"

No, not all of my "dream cars" cost more than the GNP of some countries. There is the Chrysler Crossfire. It's pretty down to earth and yet still sleek and a little sexy.

And there's Eleanor. A 1967 Shelby GT500. Mmmmm... yeah.

And, last, but not least. There's this:

Oh? Why, yes. That *is* my car. Of all the cars out there, in the "real world," (meaning: the world in which a real human could actually AFFORD the car) this is the one I would want to own. And I do. And I love it just as much as I thought I would. Even a year later. Even on days when I think, "I really don't need this car. It can't be *that* great," I see one driving by me and think, "WOW! I really like that car!" Then realize that's what I'm driving and all is right in the world.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to go hang my head in shame. I am not a car person. I'm not... I'M NOT! I swear!

Crap.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Girlie


I couldn't bear leaving the last entry at the top for the entire weekend. So instead, here's a picture of my oh-so-stylin' child in her jammies and heels as high as she is. She has suddenly become the girliest of girls. Shoes, purses, jewelry, she's all about the girl stuff. And, truthfully, I'm really not sure where she got it.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Summer is Officially Over


Back to the long and SLOW commute from hell.

The last few weeks have been smooth sailing in to work and back. Commute hours were light and tolerable given every one in DC takes the month of August off apparently. But now that school is starting back up and people are finished with their vacations, they're all back on the road at the exact same time as everyone else. Loads o' fun, I tell yah.

What do you do to pass the time when you're stuck in traffic all alone with no one to talk to?

Monday, August 25, 2008

Just Another Day ... Or Not


We all have to learn to find our strengths and weaknesses. To learn self-criticism but to sense when it's becoming self-destruction. We all have to have faith in ourselves but need to know when to stand firm without bending and when to become fluid, elastic, and agile.

My husband sent this quote to me today. He had no idea how much I needed to read something like that. No, his motivation was entirely different - Out of the billions of people in the world, which single one was insightful enough and wise enough to say it? We love these random, insane guessing games. Well, *he* does. I like hints. He thinks I should be able to read his mind or something.

I did finally get it (with little actual help from him). Turns out I have yet one more reason to love Danny Elfman. The quote was taken from a speech he gave to a graduating class last year, which after reading, I realized the quote above is maybe not the best part about it. Go check it out for yourself. I don't know anyone who doesn't need a little encouragement or uplifting from time to time.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Jell-O Pudding Pops


Can you say "ew?"

I know she's a toddler. And I know toddlers are supposed to be messy. But I have issues.

I hover when she eats. I wipe up as she spills. I clean up and toss as she drops. Sticky, slimy, greasy, messy. I just can't do it.

Once in a while, I accept that I am a bit absurd - that I need to just get over it. Let her be a messy kid. It's rare. Very rare. And usually outside.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Butterfly (with the fringe on top)


So glad someone gets to have fun with her! She loves this stuff. Though this one wasn't nearly as easy to wash off and she wasn't too fond of that part...

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Project Say Something: Sights & Sounds


I have to examine everything before I touch it. In case there is a bug on it. I think that pretty much holds my answer.

Borrowing Because I am Bored


Bethany posted this meme on Monday. It was a little different from others out there and I am sitting here, stuck at this computer, with nothing to do. So I figured I would "borrow" it from her and answer it myself. Turns out it was a pretty good idea because it's sucked a couple hours of my time already. Woo! And now I can post it and go find lunch!
Ten Things I Wish I Could Say to Ten Different People Right Now:

- You have no idea how much you changed my life. Thank you for the faith you had in me. I wish I wouldn't have resisted so much - no telling what I could have done.
- Seriously?!?
-
No one is as important as you *think* you are.
- 'the hell did I do to you??
- I never know what's going on in your head. I wish I did. Sometimes it makes me worry about/for you.
- I think you might be the only reason I'm even remotely as sane as I am.
- I know it's not easy, and certainly not ideal, but I have so much respect for what you are doing.
- I forgive you. Completely.
- Thank you.
- I am so deeply, sincerely sorry. (I probably just should have put this one in each of the 10 spots since I'm sure there are at least that many people to whom I should say that.)


Nine Things About Myself:
- I will tell you anything you want to know. I am a very open person. But I am a very private person so I will not put it out there for you. You have to ask for it. But, of course, once you get me going, I don't shut up.
- I'm terrified of failing or looking stupid so I'd just rather not try. (I SO need to get over that.)
- You'd never know it unless you really know me but I love being the center of attention.
- I'm not nearly as ditzy as I try to appear to be. Yet, I'm nowhere near as smart as people think I am.
- I have always wanted to learn to play the violin.
- I wish I could cook. Really cook. The kind that doesn't require recipes.
- Having a child has made me take a second look at some of my fears. I don't want her having them just because I do. (i.e., I try to not scream at the sight of a spider now. Though house centipedes? Yeah, I still run screaming.)
- I don't want to be an Assistant anymore.
- I am really quite quirky.


Eight Ways To Win My Heart:
- Teach me something.
- Make me laugh.
- Be honest and sincere.
- Don't act like you're so much better than anyone for whatever reason. I don't care if you
are, you don't need to act like it.
- Be kind just to be kind. Not necessarily to me (though that's certainly not going to hurt), but to anyone, everyone.
- Write to me.
- Talk to me just to talk, no agenda required.
- Like the X-Files!


Seven Things That Cross My Mind a Lot:
- I hate this commute!
- I miss them!
- Crap. How is *that* going to work?
- It's freezing.
- I'm hungry.
- Well now what?
- Where the hell is my phone?


Six Things I Do Before I Fall Asleep:
- Clean up everything I can.
- Check on Madeleine.
- Tell the husband who stays up WAY too late goodnight.
- Check the bed for bugs.
- Brush my teeth
- Check the alarm at least 3 times.


Five People Who Mean A Lot:
- Dan
- Madeleine
- Monica
- Mom
- Dad


(Sorry! Don't feel robbed! I only had 5 spots. That doesn't mean there aren't a BUNCH of other people who belong on that list!)
Four Things You're Wearing Right Now:

- flip flops
- black skirt
- black and white top
- watch


Three Songs That You Listen to Often (Currently):
- "Poor, Unfortunate Souls" (because Madeleine LOVES to sing along)
- "Falling Slowly"
- "Be Our Guest" (see #1)


Two Things You Want to Do Before You Die:
- Live for a hundred years
- Go to Paris


One Confession:
- Growing up, I swore I wouldn't be the Absent-Aunt. That I would be there so my nieces and nephews knew me, could spend time with me and I could be a big part of their lives and watch them grow. Nothing in this world breaks my heart more than knowing I am missing out on all of that, that I *am* the Absent-Aunt.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

2 Years, 2 Months and 2 Days


I am a terrible slacker who cannot prioritize.
She doesn't look at all like that anymore. See that complete lack of hair? That changed. Over night. I swear. So now, instead of having two-year pictures that show what she looked like at "two," I have pictures that are two months and two days too late. (I didn't plan it that way, I just happened to realize yesterday that's how old she was the day the pictures were taken.) Which means they are of a different kid.
Of course, when I did finally get around to taking her, she didn't want to cooperate anyway. She refused to smile. Had absolutely zero interest in any of it. And just wanted to get down and run away. Not that we had the world's best photographer anyway. (I know. I should have known better. That's what happens from lack of planning ahead.) But we did get a few "decent" shots.
Once we got home though... Well, that's another story altogether. She was all smiles then. Happy as can be. "CHEEEEEEESE" all over the place. And completely hammin' it up for the camera. I'm not the world's best photographer either, but I did manage to get a few very cute shots.
Yeah, she's definitely two.
I kept putting Madeleine's two-year pictures off - well, that and just simply forgetting to schedule them. I kind of regret that now. Because this is what she looked like when she officially turned two:



 

Monday, August 18, 2008

Sharing


Apparently her baby was hungry for yogurt, too.

I just wish she could learn so well with other people, not just her toys.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Just Not Sure What to do With the Mess in My Head


Yesterday I had something rather unsettling said to me. Today I turn 33 and everything I thought I knew - about me, about my skills, my abilities, my successes - is turned on its head and I find myself second-guessing every piece of me. I'm left with a gaping hole in me and I can't even pinpoint where it is because every nook, every cranny just feels empty.
Thank God for great friends and good food. While it sure doesn't solve anything, it certainly takes the edge off.


And hopefully, 33 will be much better than 32. I say it will be.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Project Say Something: Possibly Why I Don't Trust Anyone



There are a number of them and I don't know which one is actually the "earliest" so I will share a few of them.

All happened in Germany so they took place between the ages of 2 and 4. I don't recall these memories from stories I have been told or pictures I have seen but I remember these things actually happening. I don't remember much from my life but these will stay with me forever. Read on and you'll quite likely see why...

My parents left me with one of their friends while they went out for the night. He took me out on his balcony with my "bapper" (pacifier for those of you not "in the know") in my mouth. He pulled it from my mouth and said, "You don't need this anymore." With that, he threw it over the edge of the balcony and it was gone.

The next two stories are both recounted here. The giant story is told in full but let me elaborate on the dog story a bit... It's true, I hate going to sleep at nights. I just might miss something. I've been that way all my life. Of course, once I get to sleep, boy, do I hate waking up. When I was little, my parents tried EVERYTHING. Including terrible, awful, you shouldn't tell a child because it will scar them for life threats. There were two large dogs that lived in the apartment above ours. I used to remember what kind of dogs they were but that part of the memory has finally faded. We would pass them in the stairwells during the day. Pretty sure they were both bigger than I was at the time. So some nights, when I absolutely refused to go to sleep and was making life miserable for everyone, my parents would use the dogs as motivators. It rarely worked. While you may think that's a terrible thing to do to a child, shut up, who doesn't tell horrible stories to children at one time or another? I got over it. And now think it's funny as hell. Great story to give my parents a hard time about any and every chance I get.

My grandma came to visit once while we lived over there and she took my mom to Paris with her. I was so angry. First, she was taking my mom away. But second, and most importantly, they were going to see the "big building" and *I* wanted to see it! They were going without me and I would miss out! The "big building?" The Eiffel Tower. And I'm still, to this day, bitter that I didn't get to go see the "big building." (Likely because it's the only chance I would ever get in my life and they STOLE it from me! How rude, right? Can you imagine traveling like that with a toddler?? Yeah. Me neither anymore.) After they returned, we set out on a camping trip. We were driving a van, going to a few different countries, seeing sights and camping at nights. I remember Madurodam in Amsterdam very well. I was bigger than the planes! It was so very cool. I remember something about wooden shoes in Holland. I remember fishing. But mostly (and here it is again, the parents traumatizing the poor little girl who can't won't sleep) I remember the van breaking down and we had to spend the night in a field on some guy's farm and my parents told me that if I didn't go to sleep, the farmer was going to come get me.

Yeah, these are my earliest memories. Fun stuff, huh? And I wonder why I can be such a nutjob at times...