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Showing posts from 2015

'Twas the Day After Christmas

'Twas the day after Christmas, our duties were few.  Just Pete and just PJ and just me, the Jew.  The presents, now unwrapped, were strewn 'bout the place.
PJ played with contentment, a smile on his face.  A day as relaxed as the robe I was wearing- 'Till the Eagles came on and Pete started swearing.  There was coffee to sip, Christmas candy to nosh And after our baking, dishes to wash.  After all of the jolly, after Santa had come,  After presents were given out to everyone We all sat around and that was just fine.  The presents, some coffee, this family of mine.  In between restful moments PJ needed help As he gleefully pulled his new toys off the shelf "Play with trains! Build Lego's!" he commanded sans care Resplendent in his new Super Mario Bros underwear.  Our Day After Christmas turned out pretty swell. 'Twas a day to relax and to reflect as well.  To think of the moments from Christmas that shone All the people I loved gathered inside one home.  …

But what kind of heart doesn't look back?

{things on thursday}

...I used to attend a writing group, hosted at the beautiful home of a sweet woman named Debbie. We would sit at a table in her sun room, overlooking a creek and a lovely bit of treed land. Her coaching and encouragement and friendship inspired my writing, and gave it life at a time when I was having a hard time begin inspired. When my sister had her mastectomy, Debbie brought Marla and Steve a delicious meal. Writers group was something I looked forward to monthly. Today, Debbie lost her newly-married, 30 year old son, Eli. A NJ State Trooper, he was responding to a call when his car veered off the road in the downpours we had all day today. I am thinking of Debbie and her kindness, of how she spoke of raising her boys with love and bemusement, of how gracious she was with her home and heart and I am heartbroken for her. Losing your baby is the most horrific things I can imagine, and it's punctuated by this season that is supposed to be so joyful. I deal in w…

It's just another ordinary miracle...

{stream of consciousness}

I have sat down at the computer so may times in the past few weeks, ready to pour out all of the things that have been in my heart and on my mind. It happens to me a lot- I become like a clogged pipe, with lots to move through and no way to do it. A good friend of mine is a screenwriter, and he once told me that they key to beating writers block is to just sit down and type. Just write and write and write and, much like Drano down the kitchen sink, things will start to drain again.

On Thanksgiving Day, my one and only baby turned six. Six is a big deal. Six is a two hand age. It's 2,190 days that somehow went by in the blink of an eye and in a lifetime. PJ is still quite a bit like that puff of air they handed me at 4:17 in the morning in 2009. He is still blonde, still all arms and legs, and still has the tiniest butt I have ever seen (Truly. It's ridiculous and I don't know how he sits and he gets it from his father). He is still stubborn (Lord h…

She blinded me with science!

When I think about being a parent, I can come up with a lot of way to describe my particular parenting skills. Hot mess generally comes to mind, but on a good day I remember that I am trying. Trying is good, right? Parenting can be hit or miss- it's not like I have this crap down to a science!

Thankfully, there's someone out there who gets it! I mean, all mothers get it, but since these mothers happen to be published, it gives us some credibility when there's an explanation in print for why it seems to take eleventy-thousand years to complete a game of Candy Land, or why you are ready to sit shivah for McDonald's cheeseburgers because pregnancy nausea rendered them dead to you. How getting to shower is a privileged, not a right, and that when your child is at group play, it will be obvious that he or she is a genius. And the poop. So much poop.

So what is this mystical book of parental understanding and painfully honest truth-telling? Who has penned this treatise of ch…

All in all, it's just another day now...

{these days}

...These days, I am obsessed- OBSESSED- with the musical Hamilton. I will be close to menopause before tickets are available, as it is currently sold out through most of 2016. But, in the meantime, the soundtrack has been on in a near-constant loop. It's such a blindingly brilliant piece of work- the writing, the music, and the story telling. I am not a history buff by any means and find myself riveted by this story of an immigrant who became one of the founding fathers of our country. I can not encourage you enough to listen to the cast album and learn this incredible story. The writing makes me feel like I should walk away from my keyboard and never look back- it's equal parts inspiring and frustrating. You will not be mad at me if you take my advice on this.

...These days, we are getting a break from the non-stop activity of the first two months of school. Both soccer and hockey have ended, leaving us with therapy three days a week and cheer for one. Over-sche…

'Cause this is Thriller...

{blurbs}

...Halloween was this past weekend, and PJ picked his own costume for the first time. He decided on Spider-man, so when his therapy session was cancelled for Tuesday, I decided to take him shopping to get his costume. Rookie mistake. The store was way too much for PJ- noisy, with loud music, blinking lights, and too many things to look at. We were able to make it to the register to pay for his costume but didn't get out before he threw a small display of pens that look like needles. I had to make him pick up every single pen. He did so, and I could see him trying to get some control by the expression on his face. But, next time, it's all Amazon, baby! Rookie mistake.

...speaking of the Spider-man costume, Pete was annoyed because it had a chest full of fake pectoral muscles. It is not authentic enough for him. Pete feels that a true representation of Spider-man would have a slight build. He got all offended when I reminded him that there is no authentic representation…

Baby bend over, let me see you do that yoga...

In an occurrence that becoming increasingly common, I went way out of my comfort zone today. Today, discomfort looked a lot like Downward-facing Dog.

Marla has been having increasingly serious issues with her bone density, particularly with her hips. She needs to exercise, but her delicate body can only handle so much. I need to exercise, too, even though my body is dense and indelicate. One of us is a fat-ass and one of us is a brittle-ass and, either way, our asses needed to move. We need to be careful when we move. So...what?

And one day, it came to me. It came to me, and it was horrific because, suddenly, I knew the truth.

We needed to do yoga.

I have tried yoga a few times before and I hated it. I am not good at being peaceful and relaxed unless I am laying on a massage table. It is impossible for me to clear my mind. When I am in a quiet room, my first inclination is to start giggling. And I am not a touchy-feely-mother earth loves us kind of person. When the sun comes out, I do…

...and I am sorry but I am not a maiden fair.

It was a warm, early September evening. Muggy, the kind that lends itself to my natural curls and also to frizz. It was one of the many times that I wore my skin awkwardly. One would think that, at almost 40, I would be past that awkward-feeling stage but, on this this night, I felt sweaty and dull and not lovely.
But we were going out- my own little family along with the large extended one I inherited when I married my husband- to celebrate the 70th birthday of my father-in-law. There were many children in tow, PJ included, so our chosen destination was hardly the Ritz. Still, it was nice enough that I had to skip my typical uniform of jean, flip-flops, and a tank top.
Age and motherhood both have left me with a body that I am still not used to. Extra weight sits on my small bones in a manner that is not kind. I remember having to struggle to stay above one hundred pounds. Now, I am nearly forty pounds overweight. I forget sometimes that I am not the lithe creature of my 20’s. Gen…

How the Viva® Vantage® 7-Day Switch Up Changed My Cleaning Game!

This is a sponsored post, written by me, on behalf of Viva® Vantage®.

Paper towels are definitely a thing in our household. I have often thought about going paper-free, but the fact is, I have a five year old son and a 16 year old cat and there are some things that need to be thrown away after they are wiped up. *ahemcatbarf*

So, paper towels. If they are going to work in my household, there are a few requirements. They need to be strong, so when I use my foot to wipe something up (*ahemcatbarf*) they don't fall apart. They need to have scrubbing power for the same reasons. It needs to be absorbent, so it can handle the clean up of eleventy-billion spills every day, and it needs to be soft when I need to use one as a tissue.

Allergy problems.

We were using a store brand of paper towels and they worked okay. Not terrible, but nothing to write home about. Then, like magic, an invite appeared in my in-box from the fun folks at Viva® Vantage® Paper Towels! "Come meet some bloggers…

Can we pretend that airplanes in the night sky are like shooting stars....

I am over atMom Babble today, talking about finding magic when you have a child with special needs! You don't need magic wands or vehicular produce (although how awesome would THAT be?). You just need to believe. Do me a solid and stop by Mom Babble to check it out!  **************************************
Saturday mornings mean soccer. Now that fall is
upon us, Saturday means cleats and soccer balls and the amazing support and love PJ gets from his soccer buddies, Anthony and Nick. This particular Saturday, PJ insisted on accessorizing with a vaguely Freddie Krueger-ish hat he found in my in-laws basement. As one does. It was cool and cloudy and slightly Pope-y, and PJ had a great time.

After soccer, we headed a few minutes away from the field to the Air Victory Museum, a small airplane museum in Lumberton. We met my in-laws and the younger boy cousins there, and the kids took in all of the planes and aircraft memorabilia crammed into the space. Everywhere you looked hung some small…

I'm going off the rails on the crazy train.

Motherhood is one of those things that has an ebb and flow. There are days when I feel like a rushing river, crystal clear and moving with a purposeful force. There are also days when I feel like low tide- so far from the beach that it seems like I will never reach the edge again (not to mention the smell. Low tide. Gross.).

What I'm getting at is that this week was straight up low tide. I felt a million miles from where I wanted to be almost 90 percent of the time. We were moving- it was school, therapy, sports, doctors appointments, errands, volunteering, back-to-school night, on and on and on. In my old life, being busy was what propelled me. I liked the feeling of having a full plate and being able to keep it spinning. I thrived on multi-tasking and gloried in my ability to keep things together. This week, I felt sluggish and confused most of the time. The culmination was losing my temper this afternoon when PJ was having trouble controlling his body. He was swirling around the…

Let's get dirty...

Hey guys! I'm over at Reedman Toll Auto World today, talking about some great places to take a road trip to! Pile into the car and check out the Elmwood Park Zoo! Just click HERE to check it out! *****************************************
When PJ was an infant, I was a crazed psycho helicopter mama a little over-protective. PJ was my first, my only, my brand-new little piece of joy and it felt like that much joy must be a breakable thing.
Because of that, I flinched any time someone breathed too close to him, or when he shoved things that were decidedly NOT edible into his mouth. Gross. I feared scrapes on his pale baby skin and anything that might dull the bright blond cloud of his hair. I felt the need to protect him from every little germ or fleck of dirt. 
Fast forward a few years, and am in a place that has let me learn some lessons. I can relax a little bit and enjoy motherhood as PJ’s mom, versus my original methods acting as a general in a battle of germ warfare. This means …