I've got something to say, you know, but nothing comes...

{just like Things on Thursday, but on Friday...}

...(obligatory grumbling about how summer is just days from being over)

...I actually made it through thirty days of an exercise challenge. Quit laughing. Seriously. I did. I completed the 30 Day Squat Challenge and even though it was among the stupidest commitments I have ever made, it really did make a huge difference in the ass area. For the better. It felt like my ass might fall off some days, but I did it, I'm proud of it, and- hold on to your hats, folks- I'm doing it again. Along with a crunch challenge. Now that one might kill me.

...I am watching What Not to Wear right now, and it's reminding me that I am in desperate need of a hair cut and color. I have an amazing hair stylist that seems to always know exactly what to do, but ever since PJ was born I find myself seeking her services once a year, tops. It's not a good look for me, as I can't be trusted to make myself look presentable all on my own. So now that I am back to work, I need to get back to the salon. If you have a suggestion, please feel free to leave it!

...I have a major crush on this dress:

Infrared Lace Dress - Red, Party, Sheath / Shift, One Shoulder, Short, Solid, Variation, Lace, Girls Night Out, Top Rated

Like, a serious, "No, I don't want a donut, thank you" crush on this dress. It's so pretty. You can click on the link to Mod Cloth if you'd like to purchase it. We just can't be seen together.

...PJ can count to thirty because he is a goddamn genius. Obviously. Except for the fact that he calls thirty "thirty-zero". It makes sense even if it's not correct, though, so he's still a genius. He has also taken to congratulating himself for a task well done by loudly exclaiming "ASTONISHING!" It is so cute and funny and I love that kid even when he drives me crazy.

...I am, again, trying to get my blogging legs back under me. I find that when I writeandwriteandwrite the better content I produce, so this bits-and-pieces phase, hopefully, won't last too long. In the meantime, you can visit my blog on Facebook now! Woo hoo! Just click here to leave a message, "like" my page, and just stalk. Whatever floats your boat, friends!

Be careful what you wish for 'cause you just might get it...

{things on thursday}

...There is, officially, less then one week left of summer vacation. PJ goes back to school September 4th and with each night I tuck him into bed we get one night closer. Despite the weather, we have been trying to squeeze in as much fun as possible, with play dates, trips to the beach and lake, bowling with Bubbie and Zaydie and visits to a farm for a drizzly-but-fun morning with friends from Autism Friends NJ. I'm hoping that the weather will allow us a trip or two to the pool, but even without it, we are trying to hold on to every last second of our summer, strange as it's been.

...I have gone back to work. I got a position with South Jersey Mom Magazine as an ad sales associate, and will also be doing some writing for the magazine. It's part time, and I can work from home, so while sales is something new for me, it was too good of an opportunity to pass up, particularly while my future with Pete is in such a precarious place. I am enjoying the chance to speak with adults in a work setting, and I am loving the chance to create events and marketing ideas. It's a bit of a challenge to work while PJ is awake, but thankfully, I don't mind staying up late!

...We are on Night 3 of PJ being completely pacifier-free. I know, I know. A Goddamn Nearly-Four-Year-Old shouldn't have had a paci that long, anyway. And we're going to pay for it plenty when the time comes to correct his very cute, but wicked , overbite. It just wasn't a battle I was ready to fight until now. It's Parenting Fail #34,294,901, but it's being rectified now. For the third night in a row. Booyah.

Trying out the phones in the Family Center! 
...Today was PJ's last session of speech therapy at CHOP for the year. He and his hardworking therapist "Miss Reeta" (Miss Ranita) have spent much of this year working on building vocabulary, letter sounds, and building his receptive and expressive language skills. He had a final eval today and has come so, so far. Right now, one of the biggest things standing in his way is his inability to attend to a task (stay in his seat, focus, not start talking about Thomas when he should be labeling animals or something). Hopefully, when we revisit his IEP in a few weeks we can set some concrete goals and make a plan to help him reach them. Because seriously? Dude is smart. Truth.

...Pete and I. Eh. I 'm not sure what to say in terms of a status update. We've been separated nearly three months, and while we are both working hard to try and make some repairs to our marriage, I can't say that I know for sure what the resolution will be. Last week, we spent some time alone for the first time since we decided to separate. It was just dinner, but it was a start. It was strained, and my nerves were right at the surface. The longer our separation goes on, the farther I feel from my marriage and so much of my life. But I don't know how to stand down and take a step towards a resolution, one way or another. It's something I am trying to work on, with our therapist and within my own reflections and self-examination. But I am not giving up, even though it would be so much easier then all of this work. I think it's worth it.

...And the thing that's helping me get through this very, very strange summer (aside from PJ, my amazing sister, and all of my friends who love and support us so much and all the time)? Honey Boo Boo. Believe it. While not at all a fan of Toddlers and Tiaras, I have grown to love this sweet little redneck family. They are not, uh, super classy, but they love each other and do their best to work as a family at being happy. It makes me laugh until I cry every single time and it's almost as good as therapy because, really? How can be in a bad mood after watching Mama June let loose at her bachelorette party?? Horrified? A little, but not in a bad mood!!

...Last, a few weeks ago an impromptu picnic on the banks of the Delaware River speared some of the most lovely moments we have spent in a while. Friends gathered on blankets on a muggy, late summer night to eat, talk, and watch our children play. It was an absolutely beautiful evening, so good for my soul. You hardly had to take the time to focus your camera; you simply needed to point it at all of the lovely and remember to press the shutter:

No filter used, it was really this beautiful. 

That's the power of love...

{Things on Thursday}

Today a few friends posted this clip from one of my favorites, The Colbert Report, on Facebook:

Let me discuss all of the ways that I love this. I love Stephen Colbert. I love that this town has bucked the stereotype of being a small-minded small town, but not because they were trying, just because they are kind. I love that Mayor Cummings is also a hairdresser, because ohmigod, that is awesome. I also love that he looks like Huey Lewis. And I love, love, love the gentleman at the end, who puts Gods love for us as simple and as truthfully as possible.

I figure that it's about time that I threw my hat into the ring and talked about how I feel about gay marriage because obviously the world can not continue to spin without my opinion on this with my own marriage being in such a spectacular tailspin right now, it's been on my mind a lot, particularly the idea of the "sanctity of marriage".

The whole "sanctity of marriage" thing kind of throws me for a loop. In this country, the failure rate of marriages is about the same as the Phillies this year, i.e, abysmal. My husband and I (a piss-poor example of the "sanctity" of marriage, really) could have had a crazy pagan wedding, full of chicken sacrifice, blood letting, and Bible burning, after knowing each other for a week, and limped over to our borough hall and got a marriage certificate because one of us happened to have a penis and the other a vagina.

I'll let you work out who has what part on your own. {ahem}

It would seem that anatomy plays the largest part in the controversy about who can marry whom. While it's true that a Very Important Book has given the example that marriage belongs to a mismatched pair of anatomical parts, I can't help but wonder how that doctrine has leaked into our courts, laws, and presidential races. Church says that it won't marry gays? Totally get it. I don't like it, but I get it, and it is the right of a religious group to not participate in something that is in direct defiance of the core beliefs of that group. City Hall says they won't marry gays? The piles of paperwork that are Law says it won't support it?

I call bullshit.

Here's the thing. As far as the Law is concerned, you can have no intention of having children, being monogamous, or honoring your partner. You can have no regard for the sanctity of marriage. You can be legally bound to someone you met twenty minutes ago at a casino in Las Vegas. As long as you bring the right anatomical parts to the table, you can interpret your "marriage" any way you choose.

The system is all wrong. To truly bring back the sanctity of marriage, to really believe that to enter a marriage is to bring together the best aspects of two people, to honestly create something beautiful and worthy and true, we need to give up the idea and marriage is based on our penises and vaginas and embrace the idea that it's about our hearts. It's not up to the Law to decide that the Very Important Book trumps all; as a matter of fact, the Law and The Book are supposed to be separate. As far as the Law is concerned, marriage is a bunch of paperwork, a statistical anomaly. You want to give marriage a good name? Love your partner. Love doesn't make things perfect or easy. But it will help bring that sanctity everyone is looking for back. Sexual anatomy should not trump love. To quote a favorite of mine, Glennon Melton's Momastery blog, Love Wins. Pete and I had a chance at something so precious and we squandered it, and yet there are thousands of couples who, as of right now, won't ever get a chance. I want to apologize to them for being so careless with something they are fighting so hard to have a piece of. If we had remembered love, maybe we wouldn't have fallen apart.

All of this is, of course, just my opinion. I am one vote in a sea of millions and by the numbers, it could be buried under a hill of dissent or part of a new landscape all together. I really have no right to have an opinion on this with my easy, hetero life but I saw a piece on Colbert and just couldn't. stop. writing.

Just love. Remember love. It's all you need, and it has power.

Sing on, Huey.

Whatever this world can give to me...you're my best friend...

Well. Hello there, blog.

It's been a while. Things have been confusing and emotional and...eh. There's so much to untangle and per usual, I have gone right where I usually go.

That said, it's a special day. It's August 7th. Every August 7th is a special day because it's my sister Marla's birthday. There's been 32 of them as of this year, and it's very likely 30 more then was to be expected.

Marla is an ass-kicker, a makeup wearer, a Jimmy Choo luster and a get-up-and-go-er. She faces her foes with glitter eye shadow and a "Fuck you!" attitude. She showed up on the doorstep at 4am with coffee and her heart the night Pete and I decided to separate. She holds her truly damaged little heart in a body that sometimes fails her and leaves room to hold my heart, PJ's heart, her husbands heart along side it. She holds all of that with room to spare, for kittens that show up on her door step and the fragile little lives she watched over as a nurse, for the readers of her amazing blog who also fight her battle and follow her as she leads the way with a battle cry of words and rebellion and love.

Marla's body might, right now, be a damaged little planet. But it's just a tiny part of what makes up her universe. She is strong, funny, irreverent, brave, and beautiful. I am so, so lucky that she is my sister and my best friend. Watching her struggle with Lupus feels like a thousand knives to my heart, but I know better then to think Lupus will win. Lupus does not know who the fuck it is tangling with.

This week, Marla is down the shore with her husband celebrating. She might need a hat and umbrella, but she goes to the beach. She lives her life. She loves her family. She may be the younger one, but she's kind of what I want to be when I grow up.

Happy 29th 32nd Birthday, Marla!!!! WE LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!