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Saturday, October 31, 2009

Cheeky Monkey

Today is your first Halloween and while you won't be trick-or-treating, we did dress you up as a monkey. You looked so funny to me in your costume, that it made me laugh so hard I cried. You were totally unfazed by it too, which was half the fun! I think you kind of liked being so cozy and covered from head to toe.

Your aunt Leah and I took you out to breakfast yesterday in your costume and your dad and I took you out to dinner in it tonight. Everyone around us commented on the cute little monkey.

Next year we will take you trick-or-treating and here's hoping you'll get lot of Snickers bars....those are my favorite. :)

The best is yet to be.

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Friday, October 30, 2009

Cut Me Some Slack

I don't get it. As frustrating as babies can be, with their sometimes incessant whining and always needing something (attention) every other minute, it seems as though mothers would get a break when it comes to everything else.

For example, I struggled with the DVD player last night until I wanted to pull my hair out, I drove circles around a parking lot yesterday trying to find a place that wasn't across the street, the toaster oven decided to, for whatever reason, quick toasting; the power cord for my lap top was just two inches shy of reaching the outlet and being able to sit on my lap while running on the back up battery, I felt like I needed to have a degree in curio shelf removal in order to get the damn thing off the wall and I didn't know that Tucson was expecting a cold front and was going to be 40 degrees this morning, so on top of everything else, I'm freezing! It has been one thing after another and I have just about had it.

The trips out here are difficult and my nerves are always a bit more frayed than usual, so that may have a lot to do with my disposition. All in all, it was a successful week and I'm glad that we came. It's time to go home now and resume our normal routine. Oh, and we are both ready to see your dad! :)

The best is yet to be.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Desert Beauty

My parents' stateside home was in Tucson, Arizona. Although their house is virtually empty now, there is still much work to be done to it cosmetically before it can be sold. Your dad is in London on another work trip, (thankfully, his last for a while) so we are in Tucson for the week with roofers, painters and carpenters arriving first thing tomorrow morning to begin some of the necessary projects.

It is hard to be here with you without my parents and especially emotional for me to have you here without them. It just doesn't seem right. It is a shell of a house now and doesn't feel like our home anymore. Luckily, your ever faithful and helpful aunt is here with us. She is stronger than I give her credit for and is such a blessing to have by my side through these difficult tasks.

I always loved coming home and will miss it very much when this house finally does sell and we no longer have a reason to come out here. I will also miss the beautiful desert. There is something completely magical about it to me. It's hard to describe the beauty of the rich earth tones, the surrounding majestic mountains, the tall saguaro cactus, or the thrill of a quick glimpse at quail, cottontails or roadrunners. It's gorgeous and you are here for the first time. The desert will always make me think of my mom and dad and their love of the weather, the stunning Arizona sunsets, golf and coyotes howling in their backyard.

The best is yet to be and I am so happy that Arizona will always be the first state outside of California that you were in.

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Monday, October 26, 2009

Babies

Sometimes I look at you and can't even believe how amazing the miracle of like is. Two people met, fell in love, said "I do" and together made a human being. It's as simple and as complicated as that. It's mind boggling and wonderful. Babies are only babies for so long, so here are some quotes that celebrate these little creatures:

"That's the strange thing about being a mother: until you have a baby, you don't even realize how much you were missing one." - Jodi Picoult, Vanishing Acts: A Novel

"Having a baby is like getting a tattoo on your face. You really need to be certain it's what you want before you commit." - Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love: One Woman's Search for Everything Across Italy, India and Indonesia

"The cultural idiom of motherhood, and the only one that people find bearable, is that once a woman has produced a child she bonds with it in utter devotion, forgets her own wishes, and sacrifices herself for her baby. When she does not slip easily into this role, she risks the accusation of being a bad mother." - Sheila Kitzinger, The Year After Childbirth

"I like beginnings because they're so full of promise. The first page of a book, the first day of a job, the first time you buy yourself flowers, the first date with a new man, the first touch, the first kiss, the first kick of a good liquor, the first moment you hold your own baby. I like beginnings because I know there's always more to come." - Shyma Perera, Bitter Sweet Symphony

"A baby is born with a need to be loved and never outgrows it." - Frank A. Clark

"Babies are necessary to grown-ups. A new baby is like the beginning of all things --wonder, hope, a dream of possibilities. In a world that is cutting down its trees to build highways, losing its earth to concrete... babies are almost the only remaining link with nature, with the natural world of living things from which we spring." - Eda J. Le Shan

"A woman has two smiles that an angel might envy - the smile that accepts a lover before words are uttered, and the smile that lights on the first born babe, and assures it of a mother's love." - Thomas C. Haliburton

"A baby is God's opinion that the world should go on." - Carl Sandburg

My personal favorite:

"Babies are such a nice way to start people." - Don Herrold


The best is yet to be.

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Sunday, October 25, 2009

Date Night

For my birthday this year, your dad got me tickets to see theater production of Disney’s The Lion King and back in June, when you were just three weeks old, it seemed forever away. We went to the musical last night while you stayed with a *paid* baby sitter for the fourth time in your life.

The show was amazing, especially the opening scene. It made me cry. The animals come to life through beautiful puppet-like costumes, masks and music. I kept thinking how much you would have enjoyed seeing all the different colors, lights and dancing.

It was really nice to spend some time alone with your dad, too and we tried our hardest not to talk about you, but somehow our conversation always drifted back to our favorite little topic. :)

Last night also marked the first time that you slept all night long! The sitter put you down at 7:30 and while you did stir a little at 2:00, you didn't wake up until almost 6:00. Hooray!! The best part? After a full bottle, you went back to sleep. I am going to have to find out what the baby sitter's secret is.

The best is yet to be.

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Saturday, October 24, 2009

More On Stuff

I love comedian George Carlin, who we unfortunately lost last year to heart failure. After my post yesterday, I remembered he had a hilarious routine around the concept of "stuff".

Check it out on You Tube.

Carlin's belief was that we all have a large supply of stuff, possibly too much stuff, but we insist on storing it in smaller and smaller containers of stuff. When our closets become full of too much stuff, we move some of it to drawers. If we need stuff for vacation, we put some of our original stuff in suitcases. We even buy smaller versions of stuff just to have on hand when we leave our big stuff behind on a trip and on and on it goes....

The best is yet to be minus some of the stuff.

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Friday, October 23, 2009

My Stuff Has Stuff

I wouldn't call myself a pack rat necessarily, in fact I hate clutter. Our house is always tidy, but I do have a desk I can barely see the surface of because it is covered with piles of paperwork and our garage has way too many plastic storage containers of God knows what. The bottom line is I have too much stuff!

I keep movie, concert and sporting event ticket stubs, thank you cards, wedding invitations, restaurant business cards and other little mementos. I used to put these things lovingly into scrap books, but then I had big bulky scrap books and no where to store them. Plus, they were a pain-in-the-neck to move. Now, these are keepsakes are stuffed in a drawer. I started collecting Christmas decorations back in high school and I haven't even put up a tree in over five years. That will change, now that I have a child, but you and I both know I don't need that much holiday cheer. I have more tank tops, pajamas and pairs of jeans than I will ever wear and more books than I will ever read, but I just keep buying more because I love them.

Now that I have a baby, I have baby stuff and lots of it. My latest stuff dilemma is whether I should get rid of the clothes you have outgrown already or keep them in a - you guessed it, plastic storage bin for our next child? And what if I keep them all and we have a girl? Will be be so lucky to have a third and there's a 50% chance that she'll be a girl too.

I have so much stuff that my stuff has stuff! I have always known this, but it became a lot more clear when my parents died and my sister and I had to go through not one, but two of their homes full of their stuff. Initially, it was difficult to decide what to do with all of their belongings. We wanted to make sure that everything was carefully sorted through and that the items neither of us wanted were donated to the appropriate places. During this process, which we are still in the middle of, I realized that their stuff...books, photos, dishes, clothes, wall hangings, school supplies, nick knacks, etc. was just that...stuff and it didn't define them. It wasn't who they were, it wasn't what I would remember or carry in my hearts now that they were gone. After having this epiphany, it made it easier to let go of the inanimate objects and in most cases downright junk! After all, how many water bottles, beach towels, or hammers does one household need anyway?

I know I'm not alone, I think most people in America have too much stuff. We are painfully addicted to buying new stuff and with each new purchase we consume more non-renewable resources, pollute the planet, and create lots of garbage. Why?

Over the years, stuff has gotten a lot cheaper, but our attitudes toward it haven't changed correspondingly. We overvalue stuff.

The worst kind of stuff is the stuff we own that we consider "too good" to use...our fine china, overpriced perfume, expensive pearls, good linens, Tiffany wine glasses, all the stuff we save for when family comes to visit or special occasions. What are we saving it for? It's just sitting there collecting dust and it's all replaceable if broken.

The better question is, how did this affair we all have with stuff get started?

Orion magazine’s excellent article by Jeffrey Kaplan, titled, The Gospel of Consumption, sheds some light on the problem’s history. In the late 1920s, after the war, America had excess manufacturing capacity. We began to invent needs rather than fulfill them. Kaplan writes:

"In a 1927 interview with the magazine
Nation’s Business, Secretary of Labor James J. Davis provided some numbers to illustrate a problem that the New York Times called “need saturation.” Davis noted that 'the textile mills of this country can produce all the cloth needed in six months’ operation each year' and that 14 percent of the American shoe factories could produce a year’s supply of footwear. The magazine went on to suggest, 'It may be that the world’s needs ultimately will be produced by three days’ work a week.'

"President Herbert Hoover’s 1929 Committee on Recent Economic Changes observed in glowing terms the results: “By advertising and other promotional devices...a measurable pull on production has been created which releases capital otherwise tied up.” They celebrated the conceptual breakthrough: “Economically we have a boundless field before us; that there are new wants which will make way endlessly for newer wants, as fast as they are satisfied.”

"Our modern predicament is a case in point. By 2005 per capita household spending (in inflation-adjusted dollars) was twelve times what it had been in 1929, while per capita spending for durable goods — the big stuff such as cars and appliances — was thirty-two times higher. And according to reports by the Federal Reserve Bank in 2004 and 2005, over 40 percent of American families spend more than they earn. The average household carries $18,654 in debt, not including home-mortgage debt, and the ratio of household debt to income is at record levels, having roughly doubled over the last two decades. We are quite literally working ourselves into a frenzy just so we can consume all that our machines can produce."

We know our unsustainable rate of consumption impoverishes the planet; it also does the same to our souls. All the “stuff” we lust after does not tend to make us happier.

"We have impoverished our human communities with a form of materialism that leaves us in relative isolation from family, friends, and neighbors. We simply don’t have time for them. Unlike our great-grandparents who passed the time, we spend it. An outside observer might conclude that we are in the grip of some strange curse, like a modern-day King Midas whose touch turns everything into a product built around a microchip."

Kaplan reminds us that time is also a non-renewable resource. Perhaps, by conserving time, we’d have time enough to realize what makes us truly happy.

Read the full story in
Orion magazine by clicking here.

Call it keeping up with the Joneses, an insatiable need to have the next big thing, the latest and greatest, or simply trying to fill a void, too much stuff, is too much. I believe that it's the people we surround ourselves with, the meaningful conversations we have them, the places we travel to, our life accomplishments and the books we read that are the elements that make us happy, not all the stuff. I don't know about you, but it's time for me to purge.


The best is yet to be.

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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

My, How Times Have Changed

When I was pregnant, I knew 18 other expecting mothers. All were long time friends or women I had worked with, 90% were expecting baby boys and there were two sets of twins. It seemed like every time I shared our good news, they were sharing theirs right back. Lucky me, a network of mommies!

The ones who already had a baby were eager to reminisce about what it was like, and the ones who were pregnant loved tossing symptoms, decorating ideas and information on the latest diaper bag, bassinet and everything else there is for baby back and forth. The ones who weren't pregnant asked a lot of questions because they would be there soon themselves.

Fast forward a few months and I can't believe that all but one of those babies has been born and that most of my friends and I all have children and in two cases :) are already working on baby number two!

Lucas and I had a mommy and me play date today with three of my closest friends and their children and as I sat on the floor wiping up his spit for the umpteenth time, I couldn't help but think, my, how times have changed. Everything from our appearances to our conversations. We have been mom-ified! Now, it's all about our children; their needs, diaper changes, naps and feedings...as well it should be.

I am thankful that my friends and I can still together, even if we have to eat our lunch in shifts, care for each others children while one of us uses the ladies room and have our chit chat broken up by our babies fussing. I know somewhere in there remains some version of our old selves. At least, I hope so.

The best is yet to be and here's hoping there are many more play dates in our future.

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Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Pure And Simple

I have to admit I was a bit apprehensive about my husband becoming a father. To be honest, I really didn't know what to expect. I knew he had never even held a baby for more than 30 seconds and had never ever changed a diaper before our son's. He assured me throughout my pregnancy that he would be "different" with his own child. I didn't know what that meant exactly but I had no choice but to trust him and hope for the best. How pleasantly surprised (and relieved) was I to discover that he took to fatherhood like a fish to water and is more comfortable than I was/am and much calmer too. It was love at first sight for both my son and his father.

There is nothing sweeter on earth than seeing the two of them together. Lucas' eyes light up as big as saucers whenever he sees his daddy, especially when they have been a part for a few days. Their relationship is pure and simple and their bond already runs deep and wide and is very special. Their connection completely melts my heart and makes me fall a little more in love with them both each and every time I witness it.

The best is yet to be.

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Monday, October 19, 2009

The Kissing Hand

Having an elementary school teacher for a mother, I have always been a sucker for children's books and already had a large collection of the classics before you born. Last week, my friend Anne gave you one I had never heard of before, a sweet book called The Kissing Hand.

This beautifully illustrated and wonderfully written book is about a school bound raccoon who is afraid he will miss mom too much while he is away. Even though she tries to reassure him of all of the fun new things he has to look forward to, he is still very apprehensive. To ease his fears, she shares the family secret of the kissing hand.

This secret, she tells him, will make school seem as cozy as home. She takes her son's hand, spreads his tiny fingers into a fan and kisses the middle of his palm: "Chester felt his mother's kiss rush from his hand, up his arm, and into his heart."

Now, whenever he feels lonely, all he has to do is press his hand to his cheek to feel the warmth of his mother's kiss. Chester is so pleased with his kissing hand that he--in a genuinely touching moment--gives his mom a kissing hand, too, to comfort her when he is away.

What a lovely message! I have already read this book to you several times and even though you don't yet understand the words yet, you love the pictures.

I will definitely be giving this book as a gift to your friends this holiday season.

The best is yet to be.

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In Praise Of Single Parents

According to the U.S. census, there were more than 10.4 million single mothers in 2006 and another 2.3 million single fathers. The report I read didn't say how many of these single parents received support from the other parent. Based on my own experiences, and those of my friends, there isn't always an involved second parent.

This is not a bashing of non-custodial parents, it’s in praise of all those parents who do the near impossible to provide wonderful homes for their children on their own.

Whether by choice or chance, I don't know how single parents do it. No matter how you slice it, caring for a baby/child on your own is exhausting work. They must have incredible and loving support from their extended family. Fortunately for you, you do not have a single parent but unfortunately for you, we have no family that lives nearby and doubly unfortunate is the fact that your dad travels a lot for his job.

This time, he has been away for four nights and five days and yes, while I'm used to having you all day by myself for roughly twelve hours each week day, having him here in the evening and weekends is such a relief. Thankfully, your aunt has been able to come visit while he has been away and as usual, she has been an enormous help.

While helping me to care for you during the day has been a special treat, it has also allowed me to accomplish more than I have been able to in weeks! It is just too hard to make phone calls, set up appointments, balance the check book, or spend half an hour at the ship and mail place having documents notarized and making photocopies with you on my own. While she stayed at home with you this morning, I actually waited (gasp!) at the dealership while I got my car serviced. I worked on our long overdue thank you cards and I am proud to report that I pounded out 12 of them! I don't know what I was thinking, I also took four magazines that sadly, I didn't get to touch. The two hours I was there went by so quickly!

I'm excited over the every day tasks that I got done while your aunt was here and I am also counting my lucky stars that I am not a single parent. I love when my sister comes to visit and I appreciate all her help. Having her here also makes me appreciate the partner and co-parent I have in your dad.

The best is yet to be and thank goodness your dad gets home tomorrow!

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Saturday, October 17, 2009

Little Pumpkin

Your first Halloween is just around the corner and to celebrate, your aunt Leah and I took you to Bates Nut Farm and pumpkin patch with our Mommy & Me group today.

The pumpkin fields are beautiful and are surrounded by tall gorgeous cornstalks and bright, happy sunflowers. It was over 100 degrees in the shade, but you were a good sport while we positioned you among the pumpkins in hopes of capturing your best shot.

Too bad your dad is away on a work trip and missed all the fun.

The best is yet to be.

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My Empathy Meter

Recently I wrote about how my thinking has changed about certain things now that I have a baby (A New Way Of Thinking, October 11) and I can't believe I left out my heightened level of sensitivity. Maybe my hormones are still out of whack, but I am more sensitive than ever!

For as tough as my exterior is, I have always had a mushy center, a great deal of empathy for my fellow man and can be brought to tears easier than I care to admit. So while I was sensitive before becoming a mother, tearing up at every single episode of Grey's Anatomy and Hallmark commercials, now I am a bumbling fool for just about anything and everything...especially when it comes to children. My empathy meter is definitely on overdrive.

I almost couldn't handle last week's Oprah featuring the recently found Jaycee Dugard, 18 years after she was abducted and the hundreds of still missing children whose parents hold on to the hope that they too will be found. My heart aches for these families and it goes without saying that I would go absolute ballistic if you were taken from me.

I didn't realize that having a baby meant I became, suddenly, a member of the entire society of parents and that to some extent, all the children of the world would become my children and that I would bleed, a little, whenever anything happened to any child anywhere.

The best is yet to be and I'll cry if I want to.

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Friday, October 16, 2009

Worst Mother Of The Year

You haven't been here very long and I am ashamed to admit that I have already done a handful of things that are sure to earn me the Worst Mother of the Year award, IF they gave such an award. I am not proud of these acts, but desperate times called for desperate measures. They include:
  • Propping your bottle up on a burp cloth so that I didn't have to hold it.
  • Laying you on the floor of a public bathroom (on a changing mat of course) because there was no changing table, which really should be mandatory in all public restrooms to avoid this in the future.
  • Laying you on the cold kitchen counter top while I prepared a bottle for you or downed my breakfast.
  • Leaving you alone in the car for 49 seconds while I ran into the gas station to pay for gas because the ATM machine by the pump was broken. And, before you ask, yes, the doors were locked.
  • Leaving a dirty diaper on you for so long, you had a major you-know-what blow out. It wasn't pretty and I definitely learned my lesson.
  • Putting you in a stroller without strapping you in.
I hate to break it to you, but I guarantee, there will be more minor offenses in our future together, but I would NEVER intentionally put you in harm's way. Not like the mother in Australia, whose stroller rolled onto train tracks with a six-month old on board and a train approaching. Thank goodness the baby was strapped in and only suffered a bump on the head. Could this mother be the Worst Mother of the Year? You be the judge. It can happen in a flash; in less than seven seconds my whole world could be turned upside down. I shutter at the thought.

The best is yet to be and once again, lesson learned! Never say never.

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Thursday, October 15, 2009

In Memoriam

Perhaps they are not stars, but rather openings in heaven where the love of our lost ones pours through and shines down upon us to let us know they are happy.
- Eskimo Proverb


Kathryn Ruppert Adams
November 10, 1948 - October 15, 2007

Michael Stephen Adams
January 28, 1947 - October 15, 2007

Rest In Peace.

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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

My ipod Has Schizophrenia

I believe that everything is better with music and I love all different types; from bubble gum pop and jazz to Jay-Z and Radiohead (okay, Radiohead is one of your dad's favorite bands, not mine, but I do have a two of their songs on my iPod).

Music is an incredibly powerful thing; it has the ability to uplift and motivate like nothing else. Just the right tune can put a smile on my face, a spring in my step, a wish in my heart or tear in my eye. It can make a long boring car ride more bearable and household chores dare I say, more fun to power through. It gives me that little extra something to go another few minutes on the treadmill.

I play music for you everyday. I have 15 days or 5316 songs on my iPod, so there is A LOT to choose from. My Essential playlist (otherwise known as the playlist of music I would have to have were I ever to find myself stranded on a deserted island and could only take one playlist), which you have probably listened to the most, includes 100 of my all time favorite songs. It is as eclectic as the rest of my music library. The first 10 songs are:

1. Ghost In You - The Psychedelic Furs
2. Rump Shaker - Wreckx-N-Effect
3. Melissa - The Allman Brothers Band
4. Anna Begins - Counting Crows
5. Love - Matt White
6. Peek-A-Boo - Sioxsie and the Banshees
7. Theme from "A Summer Place" - The Lettermen
8. Hallelujah - k.d. lang
9. Pig - Dave Matthews Band
10. Crazy - Patsy Cline

Each song is gorgeous, haunting and fun in their own special way. I think you can figure out which is which. :)

Music to me is like the sense of smell for others. It helps trigger a memory and hearing a certain song can bring me right back to that moment in time. For example, "Drive" by The Cars was my first slow dance, "Fade Into You" by Mazzy Star was the song playing on the radio when I got into my first(!) car accident, "Just Like Heaven" by The Cure will always remind me of dancing the night away in Newport Beach with my college roommate and our boyfriends, "You are the Sunshine of My Life" by Stevie Wonder is the song my sister sang at my wedding and "Addicted to Love" by Robert Palmer will always make me think of my dad. Actually, a lot of songs remind me of my dad, but that one in particular. He couldn't get enough of the video featuring the scantily clad long legged chicks.

I am not a very good dancer, but I can carry a tune and you sure seem to like it when I start to move and groove and belt out with the chorus. I hope I am instilling in you an appreciation for music, if not a move or two you may bust out later in life.

The best is yet to be.

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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

A Gentle Reminder

I so seldom hear "please", "thank you", "you're welcome" or "excuse me" any more and it drives me crazy! No one is born polite. Good manners are a learned trait and they are learned at home; around the dinner table, at family functions, in play groups and out in the public, before they even step foot in a school. Lead by example is my motto.

A recent article that I read in San Diego Magazine really hits the nail on the head and I believe everyone could use this gentle reminder.

What Happened to Our Manners?

Kanye, Serena, Perez, Joe Wilson and our country's recent boorish behavior
By Michael R. Mantell, Ph.D.

President John F. Kennedy said, “So let us begin anew—remembering on both sides that civility is not a sign of weakness and sincerity is always subject to proof.” I have to wonder if he has been watching the behavior of three key public figures over the last week.

Celebrity trash blogger Perez Hilton, rapper Kanye West, tennis pro Serena Williams and South Carolina Republican Rep. Joe Wilson all put civility on the media map in America, each in his or her own way. Or should I say, put the lack of civility on the media map.

Bullying, name calling, threatening behavior—we don’t accept these actions in schools and it’s hard enough for parents who are paying attention to teach their children how to behave properly. But when adults, famous adults—role models—act out on the world stage, it becomes even more difficult for parents to do their job.

What is going on with our seemingly increasing inability to have a conversation with each other without screaming, vilifying, threatening and boycotting?

Apologies or no apologies, explanations and rationalizations aside, it’s just plain wrong, and many are commenting on it. If you’ve followed Facebook or Twitter as I have, you can’t help but be impressed by how many have simply expressed that they are fed up with this type of boorish, divisive, immature and out-of-control behavior. You don’t humiliate a beauty pageant contestant and call her a “dumb b*tch.”

You just don’t publicly call the President of the United States a “liar” while in a joint session of Congress. You just don’t steal someone’s shining moment at an awards ceremony and say that someone else’s achievement was better. And you don’t threaten a judge at a sporting event with profanity.

Was Samuel Johnson correct when he posited, “When once the forms of civility are violated, there remains little hope of return to kindness or decency”?

I don’t believe so and Lizzy Post, great-granddaughter of Emily Post and a senior member of the Emily Post Institute, also doesn’t think he was right. “I don’t think society is coming off the rails,” she was recently quoted as saying.

There has always been rude behavior in our midst, but it seems to me that the media’s sudden concern, the hand wringing, is what’s new. When President Bush was booed loudly by the audience at the inauguration of President Barack Obama, or when Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid called Bush a “liar” and a “loser,” we didn’t see discussion of the demise of manners in America.

Perhaps a recent Wichita Falls Times Record News headline says it best: “If civility isn’t dead, it’s definitely on a respirator.”

I’m concerned about health care reform. But I believe we need to be equally, if not more, concerned about healing. Do we need a day of healing in America? A chance to stop, reflect on the divisiveness, the rudeness, the lack of respect we hold for each other?

When children get off course in their road to civility, parents need to redirect them to be more kind, considerate and caring of all children. We need to do the same thing for ourselves as adults. Specific civility concepts that parents can teach children are:

• Teaching children about multicultural tolerance and acceptance
• Assisting children to care about others because it brings them meaning rather than expecting anything in return
• Involving children in public service at a children’s hospital
• Instructing children to respect senior citizens by volunteering at independent living facilities
• Drawing awareness to common courtesies, such as introducing oneself, shaking hands with others and thanking people for doing kind gestures for them
• Coaching children to share and play cooperatively with others
• Working with children to learn to respect and assist those who are disabled or have learning limitations

Parents must make an effort to demonstrate through word and action what civility exemplifies. And this is where healing America comes into play. Civility is not dead in our country. We just saw examples of what happens when it rears its ugly head. No hand wringing, tears, whining, bemoaning or folding up the flag yet. How about taking the seven concepts above and applying them to ourselves as adults? San Diego has a wonderful children’s hospital, volunteer opportunities, and charitable organizations that need our help and can help us learn to be more civil to one another.

Along the way, here are some simple tips for parents to share with their children to insure they are teaching manners and civility:

• Remember to say "please" and "thank you" for everything. Those two words are the stepping-stones of manners.
• Speak to people respectfully. Keep your tone positive and upbeat, and phrase your words so they do not come off as insulting.
• Listen to others. It's proper manners to listen to when people are speaking. Let them know with a nod of the head or other body language that you are indeed listening.
• Shake hands with people you're meeting for the first time or with whom you're just acquaintances. This shows you're friendly and respectful.
• Consider others’ feelings by being receptive of their thoughts and opinions without forcing your own upon them. Being rude to someone shows you lack manners.
• Accept others for who they are even if you don't agree with them or their decisions. Accept apologies from people who offer them; it's the polite thing to do.

Imagine that world. It is the responsibility of all of us in charge of children to make sure that the world of our children’s future is more civil than the world we leave behind. Especially the world over this past couple of weeks.


I look forward to asking my son, "What do you say?" a few thousand times.

The best is yet to be and let's hope that it's a polite road.

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Best. Parenting. Advice. Ever.

My sister gave me a subscription to Parenting magazine before you were born and in the first issue I received was the best parenting advice I have ever heard or read in an article entitled Baby Survival Guide:

#7 There's No One Else Like You

Only a handful of babycare rules are written in stone (specifically, those having to do with health and safety--like, you really should always put a baby to sleep on his back). Most everything else is up for interpretation. "It's great to read up, solicit opinions, and listen respectfully to advice you haven't asked for," says Michelle Wilkins. But you know your baby and yourself best. You'll know when an idea resonates."

Adds Chantel Fry, mom of Dylan, 3 , and Madalyn, 7 months, in Pittsburgh: "You're going to be different than the next mom. Not better, not worse--because you do the best you can, and if at the end of the day your child has laughed, is clean and fed, you can go to sleep knowing that you did what is expected of you." No matter how you did those things, exactly, you can be proud that you're inventing your own special way of being a mom.

- Maura Rhodes, Parenting December/January 2009

I have photocopied this, posted it on the memo board above your changing table in your room, carry it in my wallet and have sent it to friends. I read it often, especially after a particularly trying day and I always feel better about the job I'm doing as your mommy.

The best is yet to be.

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Monday, October 12, 2009

The Joy Of Blogging

I started this blog for me and me alone as a way to keep my sanity and to someday share with my son. It has been more therapeutic than I ever thought it would be and I'm shocked and pleasantly surprised to learn that people are actually reading it. More importantly, they are also enjoying it! In fact, I just got my 10th follower today.

Recently I received a very sweet Kreativ Blog Award from Amanda {My Life Badly Written} .

The etiquette for accepting this award include:
  • Thank the person who gave the award.
  • Copy the award and place it on your blog.
  • Link to the blog that nominated you.
  • Tell your fellow bloggers seven things they may not know about you.
  • Pass it on.
So, here goes...

Seven Things About Me:
1. I will cry like a baby if the documents on my laptop are not recoverable (it is currently with the Geek Squad...fingers crossed!).
2. I want another tattoo (I currently have two).
3. I wish I knew how to play the piano.
4. I would love to be back stage at a Dave Matthews Band concert and meet the man himself (I am quite sure that anyone that knows me at all already knows this fact about me).
5. I would love to have a photographic memory.
6. I have never been on a diet.
7. I can't believe my parents have been gone two years.

Now for paying it forward.... I'd like to recognize my friend Coreen's blog, The Adventures of Captain Fussypants & Caleb the Wonder Dog. Coreen is a smart and beautiful mother of a rambunctious and adorable two year old. She is a very good writer and her blog on parenting is fun to read.

The best is yet to be and here's to the joy of blogging!

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Sunday, October 11, 2009

A New Way Of Thinking

Everything changes when you have a baby. Loss of freedom and lack of sleep aside, your whole way of thinking shifts when you have a baby. Your senses are all heightened and it really is the strangest and most wonderful thing.

Aside from the typical new parent worries: are you getting enough to eat, are you warm enough, are you safe and are you breathing; here are just a few of the NUMEROUS mindset changes that have taken place for me.

Since I became a parent I feel like I am now a member of an exclusive club. I have a new sense of camaraderie that I never felt before with my fellow man, and in particular with my fellow moms. Now, whenever I pass one at the grocery store or mall, we nod and smile at one another as if to say, "I get it" or, "Hang in there". It's very comforting.

I find that people in general are kinder and more helpful to me now that I am a mother. They not only hold open doors, but actually strike up conversations AKA compliment you like crazy. I suppose everyone likes cute adorable quiet smiling babies. I can't go anywhere without complete strangers asking me how old you are or commenting on your blue blue eyes.

I am way more cautious about everything that I do now; from driving to eating. Your father and I both owe it to you to stay safe and healthy and to do so by setting good examples for you. I find myself thinking twice about what I put into my body and about the products we purchase for our home. I am reading labels more and making a more concerted effort to be eco-friendly. You will inherit this earth and it is all of our responsibilities to take the very best care of it that we can.

There's also more trivial changes like, the "How do I get to the top floor with a stroller?" strategies that takes place that I never gave a second thought to before our stroller became an everyday accessory. Come to find out, not every store, restaurant or neighborhood with sidewalks is stroller-friendly and in many places, if it weren't for federal handicap access laws, we'd be screwed! Can you imagine? I never used to take elevators, ever and now I find myself constantly seeking them out.

I shop totally differently now too. Instead of heading straight to the handbags or shoes, I go to the baby department in search of the next size of clothing for you. It isn't about me or my wants anymore.

I know over time I will be able to add to this list, but for now I look forward to the further shift in my thoughts and priorities.

The best is yet to be.

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Saturday, October 10, 2009

In Need Of A Fresh Start

Over the past few days you and I seem to be completely out of synch...we are both cranky and irritable, which doesn't make for a good combination. You are teething and got four immunizations at your four month well-baby appointment last week, we have been on-the-go non-stop and entertaining house guests all week. You love the stimulation and all the attention, of course, but I think I have been expecting too much from you and that's just not fair. I'm sorry.

I haven't been able to comfort you or read you very well. I can tell you want to be happy and are trying to stay in a good mood by smiling and giggling at everyone, but when you're not feeling well or too much is going on around you, how can you? It can all get to be too much for a baby and it's so crucial that I remember that.

Thank goodness your dad has such a calming effect over you. He has definitely come to our rescue more than once in the last several days as the only one that can soothe you. I will try not to take it personally, but it can be upsetting when your baby rejects you in favor of your partner.

I promise to slow down our schedule and create more quiet time for you in order to get back into your good graces.

The best is yet to be and tomorrow is a brand new day!

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Family

Family is so important.

Growing up, I didn't spend very much time with my extended family. My father's father died before I was born and his mother died when I was seven. On my mother's side, her parents died while I was in college and her brother just after I graduated from college. I certainly remember a few visits with them, as well as cousins, aunts and uncles, but not nearly as many I should.

Living overseas like we did, it was difficult for my parents to "make the rounds" to see everyone during the summertime when we would be stateside. Now that I'm older and especially now that I have a child of my own, I wish they had made it a greater priority.

After my parents died, I realized how out of touch I had become with my extended family and it made me very sad. I have been trying to make up for it by reaching out more. Thanks to Facebook, I have reconnected with all of my cousins and I make a point of calling my aunts and uncles as often as I can. I know they all feel guilty too, but it happens...distance, schedules, work obligations, life.

Families are our history, our present and our future. They connect us. They divide us. I want you to know your family and spend as much time with them as you can.

Earlier this week your grandparents were in town for their fifth visit and right now my aunt and uncle (one of my father's older brothers and his wife) are here. While being around them is bittersweet because almost everything my uncle says or does makes me miss my own father, I am so delighted that they are here. They are your family.

The best is yet to be.

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Thursday, October 8, 2009

Happy Anticipation

Life can change so quickly and most of the time without any warning.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008 was a life changing day for me. One year ago today, I found out that I was pregnant with you! What an amazing moment in my life.

It wasn't as though we hadn't been trying to conceive, we just weren't trying very hard, in other words, we weren't taking my temperature or marking off days on a calendar.

I was elated when I saw the digital word "PREGNANT" pop up on the EPT stick...twice! I started crying. I was so happy, in quite a bit of shock and then I became very worried. I had just returned from a wine tasting (read: drinking) weekend and before that your dad and I were on vacation for a week, which involved many, many pool side beers. Don't worry, all was well...the doctor told me that your tiny baby organs wouldn't start to develop until the week after I found about you and by then all my alcohol consumption had ceased.

It was all so overwhelming, to say the least, but also very excited and couldn't wait to share the good news with with your dad-to-be. I will never forget pulling the EPT out of my purse and sliding it across the table at dinner that night and him asking me if it was still wet! Silly Daddy.

I had no idea what I was in store for with the eight months that lay ahead but luckily, I had the BEST pregnancy with NONE of the typical symptoms. No morning sickness, off the wall food cravings or aversions, no heartburn, constipation, bloating or swollen feet. I maintained a high energy level throughout the entire nine months and walked a total of 479.09 miles (yes, I kept track!). Only towards the very tail end (week 37) did I start to grow increasingly uncomfortable…like you had run out of room. I was having a hard time sleeping and being on my feet for long periods of time and my back hurt a lot, but other than the end, the rest was great.

Your dad and I enjoyed every minute of reading What To Expect When You're Expecting out loud to each other in bed late at night, the monthly bump photos (especially the ultrasounds), sharing our good news with family and friends, watching my body change and grow and grow and grow, feeling you kick, putting together your crib, registering for shower gifts, testing strollers, making lists of different names we liked and could agree upon, taking parenting classes and walking around with a bigger smile on our faces and spring in our steps as we happily anticipated your arrival.

We knew the best was yet to be.

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Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Children Learn What They Live

I love that the following passage is on a plaque that hung on my bedroom wall growing up and is now hanging in Lucas' room:

Children Learn What They Live
Dorothy Law Nolte, Ph.D.

If a child lives with criticism, he learns to condemn.
If a child lives with hostility, he learns to fight.
If a child lives with ridicule, he learns to be shy.
If a child lives with shame, he learns to feel guilty.
If a child lives with tolerance, he learns to be patient.
If a child lives with encouragement, he learns confidence.
If a child lives with praise, he learns to appreciate.
If a child lives with fairness, he learns justice.
If a child lives with security, he learns to have faith.
If a child lives with approval, he learns to like himself.
If a child lives with acceptance and friendship, he learns to find love in the world.

What wonderful parenting advice! Children mirror what they see at home and this illustrates what they should be witnessing and what we will strive for in our house. After all, aren't the best lessons learned at home?

The best is yet to be.

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Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Four Months Old

It blows my mind that you are four months old today! Everyone always says, "Enjoy it now, they grow up so fast" and they are right on the money. I want time to stand still. You are so much fun right now and I know things are only going to get better.

Here's a list of just a few of the cute and adorable accomplishments you have made so far...AKA things we love about you:

  • You rub your eyes when you're tired.
  • You no longer need the hammock in your baby bath tub.
  • You can hold up your head.
  • You prefer to sleep on your side.
  • EVERYTHING goes in your mouth and it is just a matter of time before you have your first two teeth. Your middle name should have been Drooly.
  • You have already been to two birthday parties and two car events.
  • You are more alert and focused than ever and the more activity that's going on around you, the better.
  • You grab at things and are really starting to enjoy your toys, especially Sophie the Giraffe, a crazy monkey and Flip the frog.
  • You smile and giggle A LOT and at the strangest things, like me sneezing and folding laundry.
  • Your dad claims that you can put your arms out to be picked up, but I have yet to see this phenomenon.
  • You can almost hold your own bottle.
  • You get so excited over looking at a book, you almost can't stand it.
  • You still don't like the car seat very much but, you are doing a lot better since we hung a toy from the handle.
  • You have almost lost all of your hair.
  • Your eyes are still blue. :)
  • You have been on three airplanes.
  • You have been dropped yet and still look at me sometimes as if to say, "careful, mom, two hands!".
  • Your aunt and I took you to your first movie, Love Happens at the La Costa Ultra Star Cinemas.
  • You love to touch the facial hair on your dad's face.
  • You break out a 1000 kilowatt smile whenever one of us walk in the room. A simple hello is usually enough to get one. You are definitely know who Mommy and Daddy are.
  • I love being your mommy.

      The best is yet to be.

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      Monday, October 5, 2009

      Help, I'm Shedding!

      I have always had a love/hate relationship with my hair. In it's natural state, it is Shirley Temple curly and has a mind of it's own. This is when I hate it. I blow dry and flat iron the crap out of it to make it straight. I hate this process because it takes FOREVER, but once completed, this is when I love my hair...most of the time.

      I have very thick, just below the shoulder length hair and I have worn it in the same style for over 13 years; only the length has changed. Oh, and there were those two bangs gone wild experiences. I will never. do. that. again. and I really mean it this time! 90% of the time I wear my hair up in a pony tail or hair clip and no, sadly that's not just since I had a baby and needed to simplify my life, I've always worn it that way. I love having the length, just not weighting down my head or flying in my face. I love the color of my hair, minus the grays that I swear appeared out of nowhere almost four years ago causing me to spend almost $200 every six to eight weeks dyeing it. I have never had highlights or lowlights or attempted any other lights; I get my hair dyed it's natural color - dark chestnut or something like it.

      I'm the first to admit that I have always lost a lot of hair. It drove my parents crazy, of course they also had off white tile throughout their house. I've always lost a lot of hair, but not in handfuls! Apparently it's normal to lose a lot more hair than usual in the first few months after giving birth, but this is ridiculous! I know I don't need to panic, it's not like I'm going bald...I hope! But, wow, it sure feels like I could! What is going on?!

      According to the BabyCenter Medical Advisory Board:

      Normally, about 85 to 95 percent of the hair on your head is growing and the other 5 to 15 percent is in a resting stage. After the resting period, this hair falls out — often while you're brushing or shampooing it — and is replaced by new growth. An average woman sheds about 100 hairs a day.

      During pregnancy, increased levels of estrogen prolong the growing stage. There are fewer hairs in the resting stage and fewer falling out each day, so you have thicker, more luxuriant tresses.

      After you give birth, your estrogen levels take a tumble and a lot more hair follicles enter the resting stage. Soon you'll have more hair coming out in the shower or on the brush. This unusual shedding will taper off and your hair will be back to its pre-pregnancy thickness about six to 12 months after you give birth.

      Not all women notice dramatic changes in their hair during pregnancy or the postpartum period. Among those who do, it tends to be more obvious among women with longer hair.


      Great, lucky me! I have to put up with this for six to 12 months? Yikes! I better stock up on Drano and buy a wig.

      The best is yet to be and I don't believe blondes don't have more fun.

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      Sunday, October 4, 2009

      Bibliophilia

      I don’t know if it’s because both my parents were educators, because they read to me as a child, or because I loved (and love) hanging out at bookstores and libraries, but my first word was "book".

      I read to you everyday. Sadly, aside from children’s books and parenting reference guides, I haven’t done much leisure reading since you were born. I love reading and I miss it very much. There is nothing better than getting lost in a good book. Historical fiction modern day fiction are suspense novels are my favorite.

      I love how books can transport you to another place and time and introduce you to interesting characters that you don't normally encounter in your day-to-day life. I enjoy the relaxation of reading, especially when hours have passed and I don't even realize it because I'm so enthralled in a good book. Sitting quietly with a juicy epic is truly one of life's greatest pleasures and brings me a lot of peace.

      My Book Facts:

      I am a founding member of a book club called JUGS (Just Us Girls) that my friends and I started almost seven (!) years ago and I live for our monthly meetings. Our discussions are always lively, fun and thought provoking. If it weren't for our group, there are many books I would have missed out on.

      I will never start a book without finishing it, no matter how much I may want to throw it into the fireplace (i.e. Saving Graces, a terrible JUGS selection).

      I always start books in bed.

      One of my very best friends is in my life today because we initially bonded over books. Thank goodness for Kay Scarpetta!

      Since 1999, I have kept a list of every book I have read maintaining an average of 35books per year. My father also kept a list of the books he read and I often turn to it for recommendations.

      My Top 10 favorite books (in no particular order) are:
      1. The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory
      2. The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
      3. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
      4. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
      5. The Pact: A Love Story by Jodi Picoult
      6. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
      7. The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
      8. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
      9. Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay
      10. Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

      Love her or hate her, I believe Oprah Winfrey single-handedly got our nation reading again when she established her book club in 1996. I am currently reading her latest selection, Say You're One of Them by Uwem Akpan and so far it's fabulous.

      Quotes I have collected about books and reading:

      “To live in the world without becoming aware of the meaning of the world is like wandering about in a great library without touching the books.” - Anonymous

      “A room without books is like a body without a soul.” - Cicero

      “I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book. - Groucho Marx

      “Each time we re-read a book we get more out of it because we put more into it. A different person is reading it, and therefore it is a different book.” - Murial Clark

      “You are the same today that you are going to be in five years from now except for two things: the people with whom you associate and the books you read.” - Charles Jones

      “Once you have read a book you care about, some part of it is always with you.” - Louis L'Amour

      “The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you will go.” - Dr. Seuss

      “Do your bit to save humanity from lapsing back into barbarity by reading all the novels you can.” - Richard Hughes

      “To read a writer is for me not merely to get an idea of what he says, but to go off with him, and travel in his company.” - Andre Gide

      “Always read stuff that will make you look good if you die in the middle of it.” - P. J. O'Rourke

      My personal favorite:

      "With freedom, books, flowers, and the moon, who could not be happy?" - Oscar Wilde

      Ah, so many books, so little time!

      The best is yet to be...one page at a time.

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      Saturday, October 3, 2009

      Parenting From The Heart

      Controversial Topic Alert!

      Even before I had a child, I would think to myself of other parents: "My kids will never do that!" or "Is that father watching that child?" or "Did that mother really just say that?". C'mon, I know I'm not the only one. We all think we know best and that when it (fill in the blank) happens to us, it will some how be different or better even. I haven't had any real parenting dilemmas yet with an infant and I realize that it is easy to judge others when you are naive and haven't got children of your own.

      The one thing I know for sure about kids is that they can be very unpredictable and unless you and your partner are on the same page regarding your parenting style, it can be a long and arduous road. Trying to determine which parenting style to follow can be little mind boggling though. I've done a little research on this and here is what I have found...so far.

      Psychologist, Diana Baumrind determined that there are three basic parenting styles based on two aspects of parenting that she found to be extremely important: "Parental responsiveness", which refers to the degree the parent responds to the child's needs and "Parental demandingness", which is the extent to which the parent expects more mature and responsible behavior from a child. The three parenting styles she defines are:

      Authoritarian ("Too Hard"): the authoritarian parenting style is characterized by high demandingness with low responsiveness. The authoritarian parent is rigid, harsh, and demanding.

      Permissive ("Too Soft"): this parenting style is characterized by low demandingness with high responsiveness. The permissive parent is overly responsive to the child's demands, seldom enforcing consistent rules. The "spoiled" child often has permissive parents.

      Authoritative ("Just Right"): this parenting style is characterized by moderate demandingness with moderate responsiveness. The authoritative parent is firm but not rigid, willing to make an exception when the situation warrants. The authoritative parent is responsive to the child's needs but not indulgent.

      It's a no brainer that of these, the "Just Right" theory is most appealing.

      I'm also interested in Attachment Parenting, a parenting philosophy developed by Dr. William Sears. One big focus of Attachment Parenting, however, is "babywearing" or carrying your baby around with you. At two months old, Lucas already weighted over 12 pounds and was 23 inches and because I bruised my tail bone pretty badly during delivery, carrying him around for any length of time was nearly a physical impossibility, let alone "wearing" him.

      From what I understand about Attachment Parenting, it is a method that does not seem to value the independence of the child and instead promotes dependence between parent and child.

      On the other hand, I do love the idea of being sensitive to your baby's every need. In Sears' book, The Baby Book, he says “Imagine how you would feel if you were completely uncoordinated—unable to do anything for yourself—and your cries for help went unheeded. A baby whose cries are not answered does not become a ‘good’ baby (though he may become quiet); he does become a discouraged baby. He learns the one thing you don’t want him to: that he can’t communicate or trust his needs will be met.” This makes a lot of sense to me and I practice staying in tune with my son every day.

      I want to encourage the parental attachment I have with my baby while at the same time fostering a healthy sense of independence in him. There has to be a happy medium, right?

      Most people, it seems draw from what they experienced as a child from their own parents as a means of determining what their parenting style will be and perhaps, too by looking around at others and deciding exactly how they DON'T want to parent.

      I may have bit off more than I could chew with this topic, but the bottom line for me is that parenting is the biggest job I'll ever have and it is also a learning experience that hopefully, I'll get better at each day. I feel as long as we are parenting from the heart, we can't go wrong.

      The best is yet to be.

      .....................................................................................
      From Wikipedia:

      Eight Principles of Attachment Parenting
      1. Preparation for Pregnancy, Birth and Parenting
      2. Feed with Love and Respect
      3. Respond with Sensitivity
      4. Use Nurturing Touch
      5. Ensure Safe Sleep, Physically and Emotionally
      6. Provide Consistent Loving Care
      7. Practice Positive Discipline
      8. Strive for Balance in Personal and Family Life

      These values are interpreted in a variety of ways. Many attachment parents also choose to live a natural family living lifestyle, such as natural childbirth, home birth, stay-at-home parenting, co-sleeping, breastfeeding, babywearing, homeschooling, unschooling, the anti-circumcision movement, natural health, cooperative movements, naturism and support of organic and local foods.

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      Friday, October 2, 2009

      Class Is In Session

      I'm all about raising a well-rounded and cultured child and in this country that shouldn't be a problem because it seems as though babies can take a variety of classes before they are even walking. Just some of the few that I've seen offered are: sign language, music, dance, swim, yoga, massage, cooking, and even French!

      Each class description has the same claims to develop and stimulate baby's mind while encouraging socialization, language development and parental bonding. I'm always looking for new ways to bond, but can't we do it in our living room and without disrupting our feeding and napping schedule?

      Doesn't all this early education make baby’s life more complicated? Is educating your baby through baby classes the right thing to do?

      According to Andrea Grimaldi, M.S.Ed., a project manager for the non-profit Zero to Three National Center for Infants, Toddlers, and Families based in Washington, D.C., "These classes don't make your baby any smarter, but they do have a multitude of other benefits. The best reason to enroll your infant in one of these classes? You get to spend one-on-one time with your baby, which is essential for healthy development. Your baby also gets to be in a room full of other adorable infants doing baby-like things, which they happen to get a real kick out of since they get to see themselves mirrored. And even at this young age, infants are learning social skills which are also essential to their development."

      I certainly see your eyes light up when see other people your size, but for now, we're going to stick to Mommy & Me play group and yoga, unless you start to show some sign of wanting to learn how to speak a romance language or whip up a chocolate souffle.

      The best is yet to be and class can wait a little while longer.

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      Thursday, October 1, 2009

      Learning To Go With The Flow

      Confession time! I have always been an anxious person who has difficulty relaxing. I like to be on time and have a need for things to be "just so". I like to see towels hanging evenly and enjoy a very organized refrigerator and having the pantry stocked with labels facing outward and neatly lined up. I believe that everything has a place and that a well made bed is the perfect foundation to start a good day. I like to have a plan and love to make lists. I thrive on order and okay, I'll admit it, control. I have never been diagnosed with OCD, but clearly I have a touch.

      Over the years, I have tried many different things to relax, let my hair down and free myself of my overactive brain. Yoga has been extremely successful for me, as it makes me witness to my own breath, helps release tension and allows me to reconnect with my spiritual self. Yoga and mass quantities of wine. :)

      Life with a baby means that schedules, control and order go right out the window. I've had no choice but to learn to let go...a little, roll with the punches and breathe A LOT deeper than I ever have in a yoga class. I knew that having a child would do this to me and in a selfish way it's one of the reasons why I wanted a one. I knew I needed something bigger (or in your case smaller) than myself or a nice Cabernet to s l o w down.

      Everything you are experiencing, you are experiencing for the first time and I don't want miss a moment of it by rushing on to the next thing. The world is full of really cool stuff and taking the time to appreciate it all through your eyes is precious.

      I don't have all the answers and I'm FAR from perfect and the sooner you learn this about me, the better. I'm sure I have already made a lot of mistakes with you in your three and a half short months on this planet, but I'm only human. I know that learning to go with the flow is the best thing I can do for us both. Your dad tells me every day how happy you are and I'm starting to think so too. I know I am.

      Namaste, baby.

      The best is yet to be.

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