"Be true to your school..."

We are halfway through PJ's first week of school. It's been fairly uneventful in that he hasn't peed his pants, started a brawl with another student, or suddenly became able to recite Hamlet. Uneventful, but still surprising in ways that I didn't expect:

I've cried every day.

Yup. I sobbed on his first day, and sobbed on his second day when he rode the bus for the first time. And I cried today on this third day, too. I know I'm crazy, but this is a huge change for all of us, and I am still feeling so very emotional about it all! I still can't get over that I kiss my Boy goodbye and put him on a bus to school. That's such a big boy thing to do!

About that crazy...

Okay. So, it turns out I'm even crazier then I imagined. Because yesterday, after I put PJ on the bus, I drove over to his school to stalk watch him get off the bus. I know. I know, okay? It's crazysauce. And I promised I'd only do it once. It actually helped a lot- I saw him get off the bus, looking safe and happy and okay. Now I know.

Oh, and there's more crazy...

I had no idea that children come home from school and lose their ever-loving minds!!!
PJ has been like a cyclone every night this week!! He's in a good mood, but has been in sensory-seeking mode. He goes through his toys like he's the Tasmanian Devil, throwing, dumping, smashing and banging. The other night in the tub, he was spinning on his butt and using his arms and legs to propel him at a speed that, quite frankly, was kind of alarming! He looked like the inside of my washing machine! I'm kind of kicking myself that I didn't toss on my laundry and some soap! It was frantic and it kind of freaked me out. I am pretty sure that's the Autism talking, but I am hoping that his body will get used to this new schedule and even out.
They still have Santa's Secret Shop!!

I'm sure it has some overly-PC name now, but PJ got to go shopping a little store set up at his school. It's a fun way for younger kids to do holiday shopping on their own. I loved it when I was little, and I was so excited that PJ got to experience it! Judging from what he "picked", I can only assume that his teacher or an aide helped guide his shopping trip. But, it filled my heart and I can't wait for Pete to open the first gift PJ ever shopped "on his own" for!

The days are long.

I assumed that the day would seem to go by so fast, with PJ being gone all morning and without therapy at home any more. Wrong. The days are dragging. I think it's because, right now, I am consumed with missing my boy during the day and his craziness at night. These days, though busy and still full, are going slowly, and I find myself exhausted at the end of the day, despite having over two hours "off" every morning!

School clothes are awesome

I love laying out his little outfits each night. His wardrobe is not even normal, he has so many clothes, so this one isn't really a shocker. I thought it would make me sad, but it gives me a little thrill to know he'll march into school each morning looking So. Damn. Cute!

It's only been three days, so this update, I'm sure, is a little annoying! But I am so thankful for everyone who checked in on me and asked after PJ on his first day- my Boy is so loved and that alone will get him through so many things!

Love that lucky little Dude!

"You are perfect to me..."

Three years ago this morning, I had been up all night, having brought my son into the world at 4:11am. By 6:45, I was on the post-partum floor and my hours-old son was in my arms.

At 6:45am this morning, I was coaxing my son awake, wishing him a happy birthday and snuggling him in his footie pajamas.

At 7am, three years ago, I was struggling to find an even tenor in my breastfeeding skills and wondering, briefly, if this kid would ever eat.

At 7am this morning, a giggly 3 year old settled in at the table to eat train-shaped french toast, with banana-and-M&M wheels and whipped cream smoke.

At 7:45am, three years ago, I dressed my 6 pound newborn in a tiny white onesie and swaddled him in a soft, white blanket.

At 7:45am this morning, I got PJ dressed into his school clothes- a waffle-knit orange top and dark-wash, baggy carpenter jeans.

At 8:20am, three years ago, I snuggled my brand-new boys in my arms and, with the naivete of brand-new motherhood, swore to never let him go.

At 8:20am this morning, my son took the hand of his new teacher and, with his mama crying on the sidewalk, walked into his brand-new school.

With today being both PJ's 3rd birthday and the first day of school, it was extremely emotional for me. In fact, I'd show you the video of him walking into school but some crazy lunatic is sobbing in the background. Not me. Some other nutbag.


The two and a half hours that PJ was at school seemed to take forever. I wondered how he was doing. I wondered if he was scared. I wondered if he had peed his pants, hit another kid, ate his snack, or was having fun. He was, completely, in someone else's hands and that was a very difficult thing for me. And all of that aside, I just wanted my handsome little birthday boy home with me!
Of course, the time did come for me to get my little birthday boy, and I left a few minutes earlier then I needed to, too eager to get to him to contain myself. I waited outside, and soon enough, the doors opened and sweet little children poured out, my own sweet child among them. And when he saw me waiting, he smiled his big, sweet smile and said "Mommy!". Oh, my heart.

The rest of our day was relaxed. We picked up PJ's cousin Robbie for an impromptu lunch at McDonald's, where the boys chatted over french fries and laughed as they took turns sliding down the slides in the play place. The afternoon was a little crazy- by 4pm, PJ was overtired and having trouble controlling his body. We fully expect this type of reaction as he gets used to his new schedule. PJ was having a hard time keeping his little body still, so he barreled about the apartment. Until we got cake in front of him, anyway. :-)

Three years ago, on Thanksgiving night, I was eating tortellini in my hospital room. (I know, weird choice.) My visitors had all left and it was just PJ and I, and I ate my surprisingly yummy pasta and eyed my baby boy, wondering if I was really, truly, capable of doing right by this little piece of everything that snoozed beside me. I'll tell ya, it was up in the air at that point!

Tonight, I still don't know yet if I am doing the right things. But we have three years under our belts, three amazing years in which my heart had grown, my love has grown, and that sweet little blonde breath of air has grown. These three year, this past one in particular, have been such a journey, such a learning experience. I worry all the time that I might fail him, this 3 year old of mine! But with every hug, every new skills, every freshly-bathed, pajamaed dude I tuck into bed at night is a small victory. We're doing this thing together!

Happy 3rd birthday to you, Peter Joseph! You are funny, smart, sweet, silly, sassy, handsome, and stubborn DETERMINED and brave! You are the light of your Daddy and my life! You amaze us every single day and we know that there is a lifetime of amazing in you still! I wasn't quite ready yet to let you go and share you with school, but you are going to kick. preschool's. ASS! Your Daddy and I love you all the way to the moon and back, my little monkey!

Happy Birthday, PJ!

"You're right here in my sight..."

Last night was the official start
of the holiday season in our little town.
Trees were lit,
Songs were sung,
And a jolly fat man climbed down
from atop the municipal building
with the help of our local fire department.
Today was the first of two holiday parades!
We got bundled up an headed out
to get a good spot on the sidewalk!
A certain bad baby I won't name
kept taking his gloves and hat off.
But the parade began with the roar of motorcycles and
didn't slow down until the end!

For a little town, Collingswood knows how
to throw a parade!
Local groups walked with handmade floats
tossing candy to the children in the crowd...

Several groups of Mummers
(a phenom near and dear to those local to Philadelphia!)
strutted by
sequins flashing and banjos plinking,
stepping with the flair only Mummers have!

Oh, I hope that PJ loves the Mummers as much as I do!

After the parade, we came home
to eat lunch and warm our hands.
Later in the afternoon
we headed to a local church
who had model trains on display!

That's the face of a toddler who has trains in his sights!
And what an amazing display it was!

Huge and detailed, if you looked closely
it looked like an old-fashioned cityscape-
real and alive.

We even tried our hand at a coloring page!

And so it begins, the season of happiness and fun,
of cold, crisp weather and scarves and sweaters.
Of gratitude and giving
of growth and grace.
Of celebration and life.
In our home, it's a time of change,
of being brave and letting go,
of sharing the traditions from both sides
of PJ's family.

It's the start of the holiday season!

"I've got a fever, got a permanent disease..."

Oh, y'all.

Wipe your screen with some antibiotic ointment or Febreze or something, because I'm feeling an onslaught of Emotional Ebola coming on.

We're midway through PJ's last week of Early Intervention. Monday was the end of Occupational Therapy and today was our next-to-last session of Developmental Integration. His last day of speech was today and after that, one last day of DI.

I think of this journey we've been on since last October and I feel so much. I see the progress PJ has made, going from saying a small handful of words to having a huge vocabulary, a bunch of simple sentences, and singing songs ("Rowrowrowrowrow...boat!"). He went from mindlessly lining up cars on our TV stand to being able to play simple board/matching games. He went from being in his own space so much of the time to being able to smile up at his therapist while doing an activity.

Smiling at his speech therapist!
We all sat in our living room, through a full set of seasons and then some, and worked together to help my sweet Boy become all that we know he is. In October, I flew about the apartment like a psycho, cleaning and fixing and straightening as if the look of our living space would make me more competent as a parent and PJ less autistic. But it didn't matter. They knocked on our door early in the morning, when PJ was grumpy, when it was raining and gross and annoying to be out, after surgical procedures and with broken feet and helped our son work on his skills. Eventually, we all became comfortable with each other, and it was okay for them to know how vital my morning coffee is and that I am...ahem...perhaps not the best housekeeper. They sat on my sometimes-unvacuumed carpet and patiently understood that PJ can sometimes be stubborn and difficult and hard-to-handle and that he is autistic. Because otherwise, why were they there?

This was our routine, answering the door to welcome PJ's therapist that day and all of us working together. And they loved my boy, became so much more then just a random face to him. The same boy that wasn't even calling me "Mommy" when we began this journey learned all of them by name. There were hugs and laughs and patience even when he was being impossible. There were so many time when I wished that we didn't have to do this, that there was no need for therapy, that I couldn't just spend our days on the playground or making coffee dates with friends. I could wish all I wanted, but the fact remained, we needed the help of those fabulous women. The need was there for us to make the best out of and, in turn, the best was brought out of PJ.

And now we're here, the last week of Early Intervention. We are moving on to the next stage and it's fucking scary, folks. Pete and I were here, working with PJ's therapists every step of the way, and now we will step back, and let him go on his own into the care of someone else. The little backpack that I ordered for PJ arrived in the mail today, and I had to put it away because I cry every time I look at it. Today we had a meeting with the Child Study Team to put PJ's educational plan into place. He met his new teacher, sat down with his new classmates for a snack, and played on the playground with his new friends while I watched from the sidelines. He's scheduled to start school on Monday. The day he turns three. This is really happening.

I will spend these last days of PJ's Early Intervention therapy thanking these woman for never judging, for always being present, and for being the driving force behind how amazingly far PJ has come. It's Thanksgiving, and my gratitude for all of this is unbridled.

"Down the hills and 'round the bend, Thomas and his friends!"

I am one beat mama, but oh, the day was worth it!

PJ doesn't quite get future plans yet, so even though I have talked about meeting Thomas all week, he really didn't understand what was coming. It was just this mama who was too excited to sleep last night, and who woke long before her boys to excitedly pack a bag for our day trip while she sipped her coffee. Potty seat? Check. Change of clothes in case of an accident? Check. Wallet? Snack? Camcorder? Check. Check. Check. And most importantly, the tickets for our date with Thomas? Double check, and checked again!

It was a slightly subdued toddler that we loaded into the car (thanks for nothing, you wretched cold!) and with a turn of the key we headed towards Lancaster County and the East Strasburg Railroad. While PJ snoozed, the scene before us went from suburban (our neighborhood) to urban (Philadelphia), and after a long stretch of highway, we were surrounded by farms, deep in Amish country. We passed a tiny school house, where young Amish children were playing volleyball. A few minutes further up the road and we had arrived.

PJ had fallen asleep about half way there, so Pete and I gently woke him, and his eyes blinked open just in time to see his beloved Thomas pull into the station. He blinked, looked again, and then a smile spread across his still-sleepy face.

"Thomas..." he said, with a smile. And he kept smiling.

We parked the car and walked to the station, giving PJ some time to wake up and take in his surroundings. His head swiveled as he took in the trains and cars, railroad staff, and the steam rising from Thomas's funnel. He got his hero in his sights and, now awake, gleefully cried "THOMAS!!!!" And there he was!

There was some time before we needed to board, so we walked about, checking out the sights. We had time to take family pictures with both Thomas and the head of the operation, Sir Toppem Hatt. The picture with Thomas went beautifully! Sir Toppem, unfortunately, freaked PJ out a little, resulting in a picture of a slightly stressed toddler.

I can't lie. That dude freaked me the hell out, too!! Not to mention that Thomas's eyes moved. EWWW!!!

After pictures, and a quick trip to the bathroom, it was time to board! We selected a heated car to take some of the chill off the day, and settled into the plush, green seats. PJ snuggled into his seat with some goldfish crackers and a drink, handed our tickets to the attendant, and then we were off! Thomas pulled us through the lovely farmscapes, the sun shining through the windows. The car rocked gently and we could hear the clack-clack-clack of the wheels rolling on the train tracks. There was a buzz as families chattered, the conductor commented, and the Thomas theme song played in the background (Ew, again.). We waved to the cows and horses, took pictures, and after a while, our ride was done.

We got off the train and were back at the station. There was a number of tents set up with activities for young Thomas-lovers, so off we went in search of more fun. A stop inside a yellow and white striped tent yielded a veritable jackpot of train  and Lego tables, motorized trains racing around on tracks, and chairs to sit in and get a (temporary) Thomas tattoo. PJ declined the tattoo but said yes to getting elbow-deep in large train tables adorned with every character he could think of. He raced the trains along the tracks with glee, and only became upset when it was time to leave the tent. There was a Toddler Meltdown, but he certainly wasn't the only one! There is something about trains that seems to be like crack to little boys!

After a stop at the souvenir tent ($25 in damage there, not too bad!), it was time to head home. PJ has been battling a lingering virus, and his appetite has only been so-so, so we decided to stop at a McDonald's we had passed to entice him into eating! We headed back to the car, crossing the tracks on our way. As we stepped across the tracks, we heard a now-familiar "toot-toot!" The attendant called for everyone to step off the track, and we looked up to see Thomas heading back into the station. We were as close to him as we had been able to get, and PJ watched excitedly as he got closer and closer. The excited, almost reverent smile on his face as his favorite rolled by nearly made me cry. It was so sweet and honest and excited and happy, and even though it will be in my heart forever, I am so thankful to have captured it:

And with that final wave at Thomas, it was time to head home. PJ was tired but had such a good time. I had hesitated going since he had been sick earlier in the week, but even though he wasn't 100%, I am so glad that we went! It was a beautiful day with my little family that I will remember forever!

A few more pictures from the day:

How cute are they?

PJ was annoyed because we took his snack away to take the picture, LOL!


"Say goodbye to not knowing when the truth in my whole life began..."

Okay, friends. I am going to indulge in one brief moment of venting, and then I will move on. Please excuse the unhinged stream of consciousness that is about to ensue. In 3...2..1...

Gah. I am feeling very discouraged and worried today. As is the grand tradition of this time of year, PJ is sick. My poor dude has a terrible cough, a streaming nose, irritated eyes and has been running a mild fever. I cancelled his Early Intervention therapy today and yesterday because he's sicky and I don't want to risk his therapists passing germs to other kids and/or getting sick themselves. It's his second disruption to his therapy in as many weeks, as "Superstorm" Sandy kept his therapists off the roads for a few days. It is additionally frustrating because we only have a few days of therapy left before he starts school! I am nervous enough about the transition without adding extra to it!

We also have tickets to take him to see Thomas the Train, in person, this Friday! As in, he gets to climb on board Thomas and ride a real, life-sized train! He gets to meet Sir Toppem Hatt. Pete and I seriously discussed waiting until after this trip to potty train him because, when he sees a real, life-sized Thomas in front of him, he is going to poop. his. pants. I bought the tickets in August and have been dreaming of this trip since. PJ isn't yet able to process future plans, so he really has no clue! But, I do, and if we have to cancel this trip, I will be broken-hearted.

And school. School is starting in less then two weeks. So, of course, the news is filled with stories of school bus crashes and teachers sleeping with students and a bus aide tightening the straps on the seat of an autistic child as he cried out for help, leaving him with bruises and worse, too frightened to go back to school. And in two weeks, I am supposed to kiss my toddler goodbye, load him on a bus, and just hope that the people in charge will care for him like I do. Right now, PJ isn't in a place yet where he could tell me if something was wrong. I just have to blindly trust that the people whose hands I am leaving him in won't hurt him. And seriously, I know it's insane. I know I am a crazy, over-protective psycho mama but I am so scared. I am not ready for this. If PJ didn't have Autism, he would be home with me for at least another year before pre-school. I don't usually have these feelings anymore, but right now...I feel like I'm getting robbed. I am angry and frightened and a little overwhelmed.

But, we breathe. In and out. I drink a coffee. I read Perez Hilton and laugh at Honey Boo Boo and try to remember who I am. I look at my son, with his puffy, sicky face, smiling as he watches Monster's, Inc. and half-heartedly eats a purple popsicle. I remember to be normal (or as close as I can get), to know that I have heard nothing but good things about the program he is entering from people I love and trust. I try to reconcile the bus ride with the fact that he will LOVE it, and will be with all of his friends from his small class. I know that school will be an amazing experience for him, and he will thrive. I don't like comparing others problems and sadness to my own, but I do try to keep perspective and remember that we are so, so lucky in all that we have.

Mostly, I just remember that PJ has not once, ever, risen to the occasion in ways that I could never have imagined. I need to remember that, that kid? Has it in the bag. :-)

"Noises I play within my head..."

Things on Thursday

...The woman involved in this letter, from what I understand, had the location of her home put on the internet and has had people contacting her place of employment, calling for her to be fired. C'mon people. Aren't we better then that? She wrote a thoughtless letter. About Halloween. And yes, it trivialized the tragic events of a weather disaster that hurt so many of our NJ neighbors. Still, I don't think she was malicious, just thoughtless. Get it together, people.

...Ever since the storm, PJ has been insane. He's been super-hyper and crazed, and Pete and I are at a bit of a loss as to how to handle it. We know that part of it was the disruption of his routine- we didn't have therapy for most of last week, as we were stuck in the apartment for as much time. But aside from that, he laughs in our face if we try to discipline him. My only guess is that being developmentally delayed means that we are entering the Terrible Twos-ish behavior now. Frig.

...In other things that strike terror into my heart are on my mind, PJ starts school in about two weeks. The recent...um...behavior enhancers he has been displaying make me nervous, and I fear that he will just be too much for his teacher to handle. I try to remember that she is a professional, and that I have heard nothing but amazing, wonderful things about her from people I know and trust. And I try to remember that I have seen awesome results in other children who have been through this program. Still, I can't help but worry that she may just punt him out the door one day.

...My purple hair is fading fast. I think next time I will go with good old Manic Panic! Marla gets to pick the color, so we'll see what she comes up with. Marla and I, along with PJ and Marla's lifelong friend Ann, met up for some lunch and retail therapy today. We discovered a wig store at our local mall and dove right in. With the help of the extremely kind woman who ran the store, Mar found a really cute, chin-length, chestnut-colored number that looked amazing on her! Stupid Lupus may be taking her hair, among other things. But her sense of adventure and sense of humor are fully intact. Rock on.

Plus, we found a wig that looked just like my Mom-Mom's hair, and it was name Brie. Awesomesauce.

...I am way behind on housework, which is insane because I was stuck in the house for much of last week! Must fix.

...This is Pete's last week on his floor before he starts his new job in the ER. The other night his co-workers gave him a little pizza and wings send off. I think it meant a lot to him. He started working on that floor after over a year of trying to find a job, a year in which we welcomed PJ and were just getting by. He will spend a few weeks on days again, which is a mixed blessing. It will be wonderful to have him home at nights and not have to spend his days off sleeping of the shift from the night before! But, day work pays less so it will be tight for a few weeks. Eh. It's a trade off.

...I have had a headache all day. It's time for bed.

"Rock you like a hurricane..."

An open letter to a fellow mother:

Dear Ms. C,

You posted the following editorial contribution to the South Jersey Times regarding the recent storms to hit NJ and the surrounding area and the subsequent changes to Halloween and Trick-or-Treating:

To the Editor:

I am was very displeased with Gov. Chris Christie’s Executive Order to delay Halloween to Monday (Nov. 5). I am also displeased with our local governments for bowing so quickly without seeing what was best for their specific towns.

The area we live in was spared from the devastation, yet the entire state was lumped together as a giant disaster area. It didn’t matter that my town had already come up with an alternate plan, or that other towns had already assessed damages and realized that it was safe for our children to go and carry out their traditions.

Never before have I felt the presence of the government in my home as loudly as I did on Oct. 31. I found it very contradictory to the motto of our country. I did not feel free.

My two children, ages 5 and 8, know there was a hurricane, know that we were safe and sound inside our house, and know that we are back to business as usual in our area. As the storm progressed and phone calls came in, our Halloween plans changed daily. Waking up on Halloween morning we had a plan in place. By afternoon I had to tell my children of new plans, again.

My children learned a lesson about government. They learned that there are people in power who have the ability to make decisions that directly affect them.

Many will say that our children will forget once they get their night out, but I don’t agree. As they grow older, and become adults, they will remember this as the Halloween that wasn’t.

I will take my children with me on Tuesday to vote. And I know they will ask if the people I’m voting for had anything to do with Halloween. You can be sure that I will not vote for local individuals who did a poor job in taking my town and county into consideration.

(original text and link to NJ.com can be found by clicking here)

I can't help but feel that you are missing what is, essentially, the bigger picture in terms of life and the way things happen.

To begin, the order issued by Gov. Christie was for towns who did not, at the time of his edict, already have a plan in place. My hometown officials had a plan in place and were able to follow it. If there was a change in plans in Mullica Hill, it was a decision made by local government in what I can only imagine was for the safety and well-being of the people of Mullica Hill. You made the observation that your town officials were "bowing" to the orders of our Governor. Guess what? They should. When it comes down to it, that's their job.

I am very, very happy that your family came through the storm safely and that your town was subjected to minimal damage. What a blessing that you can hold your children under the warmth and safety of your own roof. There are many of our neighbors in NJ that can not say the same. At the very least, there were people without power for days. At worst, there were people who lost their homes, their livelihood and memories. Even worse, there were people who lost loved ones. It's a time to be okay with being "lumped together" with the rest of our NJ neighbors. I feel that our NJ government handled this amazing, unusual, devastating situation as best as possible.

You mentioned that you didn't feel "free". I can't help but be curious- what would you have done had it rained on Halloween? Or if there had been a freak snowstorm much like last year? An outdoor holiday like Halloween is often left at the mercy of Mother Nature- the storm being an extreme example of such.

I agree in that the absence of Halloween can be heartbreaking to a young child. Halloween is exciting and fun and you get candy! Five and eight are still very young, and I completely understand the disappointment in their sweet young hearts. Still, there was something you said that I just can not get past:

My children learned a lesson about government. They learned that there are people in power who have the ability to make decisions that directly affect them.

Many will say that our children will forget once they get their night out, but I don’t agree. As they grow older, and become adults, they will remember this as the Halloween that wasn’t.

There were, indeed, lessons to be learned here. How sad that the lesson for your children couldn't be one of creativity, where in the absence of Halloween on the 31st it couldn't be replaced with, perhaps, a family candy party, the one night a year where dessert came first. Or that the lesson couldn't be compassion, in which you took a family trip to get candy to be packed up with notes of encouragement for all of those other Jersey kids we've been "lumped" with who won't have Halloween, delayed or otherwise. Or a lesson about blessings, because there are a hell of a lot of people who will remember this as the Halloween in which everything they knew was destroyed. And about that "power"? The lesson is that it is sometimes out of the hands of humankind as a whole.

The tone of your letter gave the impression that the only lesson here was that the indescribable suffering of the people you share a state with was little more then an inconvenience to you. The lesson that even when you have been left with the amazing blessing of a life untouched by the devastation of the storm, you want more. It was sad and small, even in what was your obvious need to keep your children happy. As a parent, I can understand that.

I just can't understand your lack of compassion and your sense of entitlement. I just pray that you continue to have a life that is blessed enough to have Halloween be a worry big enough to spurn the need to write to the papers and that you don't ever need to help of the New Jerseyans you have been "lumped" with.

Wishing your luck continues,
Brie L.

"...but I don't even run from the rain."

It's Sunday night, and...

...it was daylight savings, also known as The Longest Damn Day of the Year. I remember when it was the best day ever because I could get an extra hour of sleep! But, those days were before motherhood and now, daylight savings means an extra hour of Toddler Madness. Oy, vey. Good thing it's also an extra hour of cuteness!

...before bed, PJ and I snuggled and watched "Monster's Inc.", his new favorite! He loves to tell me everything that is happening on screen ("Sully brushing teeth!") and, to my great amusement, calls Mr. Waternoose "More Feet!". The movie is being re-released next month and we are hoping it will be PJ's first theater movie!

Henry J Waternoose III.jpg
Bwahahahaha!! "More Feet!"

...we have a very busy week coming up! Pete will be working for much of it, so I just hope for things to go smoothly and with ease! Even though it sometimes feels like our routine is disrupted a bit when Pete is home, I mainly miss him when he's not and feel thankful to have him to lean on when he's here!

...I can not believe it's November already! My baby is going to be three in twenty-two days, and will be starting school by the end of the month. I am completely unprepared for both events.

...we had a great time Trick-or-Treating yesterday! Halloween was rescheduled due to Hurricane Tropical Storm Post-Tropical Cyclone Sandy. My town and most of the surrounding areas were blessed to have minimal damage- some down trees and power outages- but it was still startling to see huge trees leaning on homes and the mess the storm left behind. Still, I know how amazingly lucky we are compared to our neighbors at the shore. My parents lost power for several days- their neighborhood is having Trick-or-Treating tomorrow so I may take PJ by for a second round! PJ's beloved ocean beat the living hell out of the people there, and it's like hearing your best friend punched her mother or something. You just can't fathom how it happened. At any rate, many people were kind enough to take pictures of PJ for me, so as soon as I get my hands on them, I'll post them!

...Pete was on call for work tonight, so he slept all day just in case he was asked to come in. Which he wasn't. So, now he's wide awake and I'm about to pass out. Sigh. Par for the course.

It's Sunday night, and I am ready for bed!

"Be strong, walk on..."

We fill our time on the weekends
with low key stuff, usually.
Quite time with family.
We stay in our pajamas until lunchtime.
Our weekends are sweet around here,
but not earth shattering.
Which is just how I like it!
But sometimes...
You power up with yummy food and great company
and tons of Girls Night Laughter...

you get your inner Katy Perry/badass on
And dye your own hair purple in solidarity.

(And sometimes it takes a double process bleaching and two tries at getting it purple.)
Some weekends, the threat of a hurricane looms
Cloudy and ominous,
and you tell the storm to go f*#k itself
Because you need to fight Lupus that weekend.
You see a rainbow at 7:24am
When rainbows have no business being awake
and you know something amazing is about to go down.

You walk alongside your sister
Who wears a purple wig to cover her failing hairline,
Boasting your own purple-haired hue.
And with thousands of other feet amongst your own
And tell Lupus to go f*#k itself.
I've talked about the days
when walking on a fall day feels like the only way
to heal the world.

Oh, we felt that this weekend.
We all swept out of Philadelphia
Before Sandy swept into New Jersey
And it was during the lull in between
where we savored the flavor
of an amazing weekend.