Friday, November 28, 2014

God is Good.

For a year + now, I've been trying to figure out what/who/how to talk to our daughter about God.

She's been asking questions a lot lately-and honestly, I am confused on how to respond. What do I believe?

I was "raised" Catholic. Meaning, we went to church every Sunday. Translation - I got dressed up and messed with my sister for an hour while sucking on a lifesaver waiting for breakfast (we typically weren't allowed to eat till after mass.)

I went through communion, but was never confirmed. I did go through confirmation, but when I asked questions about abortion, the church called my parents and explained I had to go through the process again...and well, I never went back to church school, nor did I get confirmed.

Fast forward years later.... and my husband and I decided to baptize our girl Episcopalian at 6 months; part because my husband is "1/2" Episcopalian, it  seems the religion is Catholic "light" (same familiar prayers), and the church in the town he grew up seemed pretty cool. Plus, it just felt like the right thing to do. So my MIL made an adorable Christening gown, bonnet, and booties, we ordered a cake,  chose God Parents, and had a special moment on Father's Day 2010.

But what was next?

Today on a road trip to Oregon, our girl asked "Mommy, who is God?" and "Who is Jesus?"

Well,  "....Baby, God is this really cool guy who created Earth and Jesus is his son." My husband, which mind you never attended Church as much as I have but did study theology at Fordham, started telling our girl this amazing, beautiful story about this world created by God and the son of God and how he was magical.

I was taken aback. Here was this beautiful explanation of it all. Something that made sense to me in a simple pure way - and it felt right. Something I never heard him say out loud, heck, never heard stated by anyone like this, but knew that maybe finding a Episcopalian church for us might be the right thing to do..and soon.

and what did our Daughter say?

"So how long till we get to Oregon Mommy?"

And that was the end of the questioning. Made me think, maybe this big decision to go to mass wasn't that big after all. Maybe it was just an easy decision for our family - as simple as a long road trip with the three of us figuring out our way-and how long it was going to take us to get there.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

mixing it up.

It's that time again. It's dark as night all day here in the #PNW, it's wet with rain - lots this year, and well, all I want to do is sit and eat carbs while drinking coffee all day with a side of leftover Halloween candy.... SIGH.

We're settling into our new home and with the new place, there is new room for my old cookbooks that haven't seen a kitchen in years. Along with my Pinterest inspiration, I'm  somewhat motivated to expand our carb filled basic weekly meal recipes....

So I came across this menu planner idea on Pinterest that I think stylistically isn't my cup of tea (or soup since we're talking food here), but - I like the idea and overall ease of meal planning.

So maybe this fall, I'll pour myself a cabernet vs coffee and start exploring new recipes for our new home. I just might be able to toast to that.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Moving Lessons.

Whoa this is fun. NOT. You would think moving 4xs before I was 8 and moving every year I was in NYC (sometimes 2xs a year) for 9 years would have soften this ....but....

Moving with a 4-year-old plus selling a house and buying new house has added a whole new level of reality to this experience.

Needless to say, I never want to move again.

But what I will say as we're so close to being done with this move -- is I've learned a few new lessons through this move at this age, in this experience that I'd like to share....

  1. I don't need that much stuff. That's an easy one. 
  2. Less is WAY more. 
  3. Cleaning a non-packed house is way easier (in other words - staged houses are way easier to keep tidy.) 
  4. Having fresh cut flowers is not only amazing but something I'd like to do forever - every day, every week for the rest of my life. 
  5. Hmm, Dad was right. Making my bed nicely every day is a nice feeling. 
  6. Knowing my house is always clean when I walk in is amazing. 
  7. I am beyond cranky when I spend a lot of time making sure my house is clean. Is it worth it? 
  8. This feels a lot like my first trimester of being pregnant. I can't really talk about it,  I'm not sure what's happening next, and I feel sick and excited at the same time. 
  9. It's the little things that matter. For some unknown reason, I pre-packed (in the POD to stage the house) spices, our funnel, salad spinner, and my nail polishes. Not cool. 
  10. Blogging is the last thing I'm thinking about.  

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Only one.

I'm sick of all the reasons why our daughter might be doing something because she's only "one." People feel the need to tell me that she does X because she's an only child over and over again. But what if she does X because it's what she wants to do?... and maybe she'd do X even if we had a house full of kids but I wouldn't notice it because I'd be busy dealing with another child's situation? Maybe I'm more aware because she's only "one" but that doesn't make it any less or any more than two or three or....

So please, before you tell a parent of "one" she is experiencing what she's experiencing due to the number "one" nothing else, take a breath and maybe just listen and smile and think how lucky she is that she only has "one" and doesn't have to deal with the same issue two, three, or four times.


Monday, June 23, 2014

Goodbye Bob.

This picture is from our first outing together in January 2010 - on an unusual warm winter day. 

We've been through so much together. Our first vacation with our girl to southern California in February 2010. Our crazy trip to Maui where we all got sick. 

So many trips around the lake - walking/running. 

Adventures to parks, farmers markets, trails, crazy day at Discovery Park. 

You've always been super durable - versatile. Able to cruise over any bump on the road. Literally.  Go off-roading. Run in races. 

But lately, you've just been chilling in our garage, waiting for our next adventure together. Last night I cleaned you up and made you shine bright (and wondered why I hadn't done this sooner. Sorry Bob.) 

Last night I posted you for sale* along with some extras you offered me - a well used and appreciated cup holder and a rain cover - both extras that well, I can't express how valuable they were for me. 

Goodbye Bob. Our girl is has sadly outgrown you. I've already parted with the crib, baby clothes, but you Bob, are the hardest so far. I loved you and how easy you made my life carrying too much stuff and providing a sweet place for our girl to nap and me to chat on the mobile countless times. 

I could not have survived without you Bob. Take care - and I wish you much love in your next Momma/Stroller relationship. 

*Our 2008 Navy Bob Revolution is for sale. $200 for the stroller, baby seat bar (straps not included), cup holder, and rain cover.  Comment if you're interested to start a new relationship! He's fantastic. ;-) 

Thursday, June 12, 2014


I heard a piece yesterday on NPR about a Mother and her family moving in with her 91 year old Grandmother when they first moved to Seattle and how the entire experience changed her and her children.

Her three children were raised by not only herself and her husband, but her Grandmother and the children's Great Grandmother.

The youngest who was a toddler in the beginning of their journey would sit with her GG and have breakfast every morning. They developed a relationship that was so special and important for each of them.

Here was this Woman approaching her last days with this young child- sharing this moment of caring and understanding. Having a purpose again and giving the child an experience that is unique these days.

My Grandmother who I called Omi (pictured) moved in with us when I was almost 8, my younger sister 4, where she lived till she became sick around 6 years later. She moved into a nursing home and lived there for 6-7 years before she died.

I remember some days hating the fact that she lived with us because I was at that annoying age where any adult bothered me. I remember being told I wasn't going to prom that night by my parents unless I drove my car to the nursing home to show her me fully dressed, hair done, and make up on first.

But what I truly remember is her dripping with gold earrings, necklaces, long red nails, revlon hot pink lips, hair done perfectly, speaking spanish on the phone when talking with her sisters, cheering me on for ALL the at-home dance, plays, etc I performed for her. I remember her amazing tacos, meatloaf. I remember the bags and bags of silver jewerly she'd bring back to my sister and I from her travels. I remember how all the ladies in our neighborhood loved talking with "Mercedes." I remember her frog song when I was going to bed. I remember her scratching my back to put me asleep. And I remember how cool it was that she organized all the ladies to see me in my Prom dress and praise my beauty.

When she passed, the night before - she was in my dream floating around me. This woman who was barely aware anymore, but in my dream she was her old self. She was the woman who was always there for me even if I pushed her away.

Here's to all of us rethinking our relationships with family and our children and remembering how important it is. I wouldn't change my living situation one second.

Love you Omi and thank you Mom & Dad.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

A year of running

Last April 2013 - I started my training to run. I wanted to run weekly. I wanted to run in 5ks. I wanted to love running.

2 out of 3 ain't so bad.

I've been running now 1 full year.  I run 2-3xs a week slightly over 3 miles each time. (Basically I run around our lake.) On average, I run about 10.34 mile - which is slow to many but a minute faster than I ran last year. I no longer stop to walk. I run the whole loop.

Tomorrow, I'm running the Run Like A Mother Mother's Day 5k my 2nd time. This year I didn't have to train walk to run - I ran and biked at Beautiful Bike weekly to prep, and just signed up. Nothing out of the ordinary. This year I went to pick up my packet with calmness. This year our 4 year old will be running her first 1k before I run.

So, I have achieved my goal of running weekly, running in 5Ks. I still do not love running, but I do love to get it done and achieve my goals. I love the fact that I can travel anywhere with my running shoes and my running gear and run wherever I am - though sometimes I do find it hard to get out and run on vacation.

I've committed to three 5Ks in 2014 - and this is my #2 run this year. I'll keep you posted!

Friday, April 25, 2014

Party of 3.

Is she your only one? Are you planning on having another? Is she your youngest?

Our girl is it. We have one. Party of one child in this house.

Was that the plan? No.

"Mommy, why do some people try to have a baby and they just don't get one? Mommy- is it like when I ask Santa for many different things and I don't get everything?" 

M asked me this just the other day.

No one knows your journey. No one knows how scared and excited you were the first time and how the excitement ended too fast.

No one knows how scared we were with you and how we thought we lost you too, but didn't. And are so thankful every day.

No one knows that you could've been an older sister.

But I've found that everything I've asked for in life never comes the way I expected it. It comes to me in a different shape, a different time than I expected, and in a totally different way that I could ever imagine (I.E. Me living in the PNW?!)

Party of 3 is actually pretty awesome and intimate. Party of three is pretty special. Do I crave siblings for our girl? Of course, but that journey is over for us. Is it easy for me to close that door? Never - but it's not bad either if that makes sense. It's bittersweet.

I see so many of M's friends as her family and I hope they will be forever. These two boys pictured here are so dear to our girl. And secretly (okay, not so secretly) I'd adore to have them as sons. They are the sweetest, caring boys ever - and treat our girl so kindly it makes my heart sing.

Family is defined so differently for all of us. We're creating our family of 3 plus 100 more family members. Here's to all of us together.

Thursday, April 3, 2014


Girlfriends are the ones who you play dress up with in the beginning. The ones you show your special doll.

Girlfriends are the people you turn up the music with and belt our your favorite song.

Girlfriends are the ones who teach you how to braid your own hair, apply make up.

Girlfriends make you laugh out loud so badly you have to RUN to the loo; cry so hard you never know what hit you; listen to you so well you'll never let her down.

Girlfriends are the ones who are there for you when family can't be. Give hugs when that's all you need. Share something that you need, want, or just should share.

Girlfriends are the ones who let you complain to but never hold it against you. Never tell you look fat. Girlfriends support you when all the cards are down. Girlfriends push you to run an extra step (or two.)

Girlfriends are the ones who help you hot glue 100 programs; help you make your bouquet; and dance with you all night at your wedding.

Girlfriends are the ones who understand the days that you can't take any more; when you just need a break - but she knows you'll be back tomorrow. And Girlfriends don't judge you for it.

Girlfriends hold your hands when it's really sad and relate when all there is sadness. Girlfriends get it and give it back when it's needed.

Girlfriends have ups and downs; ins and outs. Girlfriends are our Mothers, our Grandmothers, our Aunt, our Sisters, our cousins, our neighbors, our Mommy friends, strangers. Girlfriends are just that and more. Girlfriends give us hope, love, and support.

Mwah to all of mine. 

Tuesday, March 25, 2014


Having a 4 year old is like having a match maker in the family.

"Mommy, Mommy, I wanna have a play date with ____ TODAY!" 

Oh, you wanna have a play date with a new kid? New kid means new Mom which means I get to see if we click. What if our children are besties and we Moms can't stand each other?

First rule:
1.) Meet a public space.

Of course my daughter always wants to "show all her toys" to her friend, but that is just too much pressure.

Second rule:
2.) I think outside is best if you can do it. Living in Seattle, that can be tough - but if you go some where with lots of play room where the kids can be kids and it's not very crowded, it's just better.

Third rule:
3.) No expectations. Don't expect you'll hit it off with the new Mom. Don't expect the kids to love each other. Don't expect you'll hate the new Mom. It's a first date people. Don't move to fast.

Fourth rule:
4.) Bring many snacks for two. Our girl eats a lot. I find this rule works on any play date. And lots of snacks because you'll never have what any kid wants. Heck bring snacks for your New Mom and you if you want…but don't over do it.

Fifth rule:
5.) 2 hours is the perfect amount of time - especially for a first date. You're not going to hang all day.

I'm sure there are many other rules. PLEASE tell me in the comments box. I'm still new at this Mom dating thing. I will say this, our girl has fixed me up with some pretty awesome Moms. Next on the list, me fixing my husband up with the husband of the New Mom. Now if they hit it off, there will definitely be more than lunch date for all!

Here's to new relationships.

To my latest New Mom date - you know who you are - I am looking forward to our next date. Our girls did well and I hope this isn't too much too soon. :) 

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Fish out of water.

I'm part fish. No, I'm not a mermaid (though our 4-year-old daughter would LOVE it if I were…) I just feel at home, at peace in the water. It's my church. At first it was splashing in baths, pools, then the ocean, lakes, moving to swimming for fun and competitively for many of my years from 8-19. I love being IN the water, NEAR water, ONE with the water.

I started surfing at 30 years old after watching, reading, following surfers since I was 14. I finally got the (insert word for female balls here) to try it out. I'd been in love with the sport for too long and decided to take the plunge literally-and do it. Once I was on my first board, I was hooked. I knew it was my place.

After a short time living near the beach and surfing daily, my then boyfriend now husband and I decided to move to the PNW from San Diego to further our careers. San Diego was not the place for growth for either of us - though our surfing was improving daily…

Now 7 years later, surrounded by water I'm starting to get really stir crazy. Yes, sure, I could surf here in Washington or Oregon, but it's a long trip for surf that could change it's conditions during that drive and no matter what will freeze by (insert word for female balls here) off. The few times we've gone in Washington it's been gorgeous, empty, fun yet FREEZING waves. After 2 years of surfing year round in NY, I've officially retired my 6/4/3, booties, and gloves.

So I'm looking for a new water sport to quench my thirst. Next week, I'm checking out Seattle Outriggers - to be one with the water again. I'm not sure how this will feel for me and if it will be enough to help me through this journey, but it's my latest attempt at my ever changing outlook on my life and become the person I want to be. Something like the ocean that changes daily, hard to predict, and a piece of who I am.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014


This past Monday, MLK day, was our family day. The holiday craziness was over. Work had started back in full force for my husband. Our daughter was back in preschool 4xs a week. The holiday decor was taken down and put away (okay, sorta. All unorganized in the garage….) No work/no school.

So we decided to head to a park we don't normally visit,  and explore the outdoors, on trails, in the forest.

One of the amazing things of the PNW is the weather. Yes, I know...the weather. It changes on the drop of the dime here and this Monday, it changed from cold and gray to cold and blue. Blue on a January day is a gift btw. And it stayed blue.

So this Monday, as a family of three with no iPhone texting, we walked on trails looking for the beach in this park with blue skies all around. We found a trail that took us on many park maintained tiny bridges of creeks leading to the beach. And my husband said,

"Let's follow a leaf boat!"

A leaf boat?

I didn't grow up in here. I grew up in a hot, humid place where being outside usually meant was in dry or humid in warm places. Creeks? Sure, but I didn't play in them - or float leaf boats.

So on this day, my man took a cool looking leaf and tried to float it under the bridge to see if it would float under the bridge to the other side.

This whole thing touched me. Yes, it was just a leaf floating down the creek, but to our daughter it was a fairy boat heading to the fairy forest. It was something she probably will always remember. It was something only her Dad could teach her, and teach me.

It reminded me that he and I will forever be teaching her things from our own perspective and teaching each other. I can't wait to find another creek….

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Cool Blog

Just a glimpse of some sweet inspiration.

Today I am thankful for…

  • Running into a fellow preschool Mom with another sick child who played with our sick kid for 40 mins in the drugstore while we were waiting for our prescriptions
  • The woman who helped me in Costco with napkins after our daughter vomited in the cart
  • Only having 1 item in the cart when it happened
  • Leaving Costco
  • Having an extra plastic bag in the car
  • ...and a random beach towel (?)
  • Our washer and dryer on the first floor right by the front door
  • Rare sun and warmth on a January day in the PNW to dry the washed down car seat
  • Rare 40 minute nap from our 4 year old so I could clean up the car
  • Amazon movies
  • Thai food with with 1 block from our house

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Homeless in Seattle….

This morning I heard an alarming fact about the homeless population in NYC, a place I called home for almost 10 years, that the number of homeless people is at it's worse since the Great Depression.

I was listening to this news on NPR while driving south on the freeway. Just then, I exited James Street exit and saw something in-between the freeway and the off ramp. There were 5 or 6 tents surrounded by garbage and people were huddled together.

Our daughter who is now 4 asks me many questions about the homeless people she sees as we drive to and from places in this city of ours we now call home. Children open our eyes and remind us how to really see again.

I started to doing some research tonight and read that during the last census of our homeless shelters, 50% were families in the shelters. I read about the Seattle Architect who changed his career focus to help the homeless. I started to read about care packages to give to the homeless on Pinterest. I liked the Homeless in Seattle Facebook page. 

So now that I've packed up our holiday decorations, I think it is time for me to help.