Friday, August 27, 2010

Cat Power

Here are some of my favorite Cat Power songs.  I love Chan Marshall's voice and style so much! 

I think if I were planning mine & Allen's wedding today, we would dance to this song for our first dance.  (for the record, our first dance was to "At Last" by Etta James)

Here are some of my favorites:

Thursday, August 26, 2010

1st Day of All Day Kindergarten

I gave myself until this Monday to cry and be sad about Sydney starting all day Kindergarten.  I'm a big believer in letting it all out and getting your emotions and thoughts off your chest.  I'm much better now.  And Sydney has adjusted so well and is loving Kindergarten.  I think she's already taken on a leadership role!  She has been chosen several times to walk students to the office and then walk herself back to class.   She said "I felt like such a big girl walking in the hall by myself!"  Ahhh, makes this Momma so proud!

Here she is on the first day of school, wearing the outfit she picked out.  And of course, her hair all down, the way she likes it.  (as opposed to in a cute do with matching bows the way I like it!)

Look how much she's changed since her first day of Pre-School 1 year ago!

Garrett and I have been having fun, just the two of us.  We baked cookies for Sydney on her first day of school.  Seeing him standing on the chair pulled up the the counter, helping me bake reminded me of Sydney when she was 2.  It's amazing how time flies.  I'm thankful for the one on one time I have with Garrett now.  I can take him to do all the things I did with Sydney at this age.  And he is certainly loving having my undivided attention all day!

Monday, August 23, 2010

A Take Away Show

I am in love with the YouTube channel LaBlogotheque!  Here, I have found the most amazing unplugged and original performances by some of my favorite bands!  I found their website here .  I have spent many hours watching these amazing performances and I thought I'd share some of my favorites.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

New Beginnings

Today is Sydney's first day of all day Kindergarten.  She could not be more thrilled!  She is so excited to be in the big building (pre-k was in a pre-fab building next to the big building), so excited to eat in the cafeteria, so excited to have gym class and music class.  So many firsts for her.  And I am thrilled that she is thrilled. Not all kids are so ready and enthusiastic about venturing out into the unknown.  I, on the other hand, am struggling today.

I did not expect to be this emotional.  And I was fine.  Until Garrett and I got back into the car and drove away, and he asked one simple question "where's Sister?"  This sent me into an emotional tail spin.  Reality has sunk in for me.  It feels like I am closing the first chapter on my life with Sydney.  And I have adored the first chapter.

When I had that sweet girl on September 1, 2004, I knew I was forever changed.  Everything I ever thought I wanted to be or do in life drifted away.  I fell in love with her and in love with Motherhood.  I knew immediately that I had to be the one to take care of her.  For me, it was the only answer.   For me, there was no other way.  Daycare was not an option. 

So began a new life for me.  A life of daily games of peek-a-boo, messy lunches, poopy diapers and not much grown up interaction.  And I loved every minute of it.  Then came the toddler days.  Oh these days were so fun!  Suddenly I found myself spending all my time with a little person who could carry on a conversation with me!  So our days were filled with trips to the mall, lunches out together, tons of zoo trips and princess movies.  Oh how I loved the princess days.  I fear they are on their way out soon.  We would watch a different princess movie every afternoon.  Next came the pre-school days.  A baby step into the real world.  She succeeded with flying colors.  I did pretty well myself.  These days brought on new challenges, though.  Such as, her now having just as many opinions as me and very good at voicing them.  All that work I did teaching independence and decision making was now back firing on me!  Pre-school days also brought new ideas into her mind, some new behavior learned from kids at school (not so great) and proved to me what I great job I had done so far. 

This brings us to today.  She was ready for Kindergarten.  She's seemed a little bored lately.  In a little bit of a funk.  I think school is just what she needs right now.  However, I am dealing with the sadness of closing that first chapter of our Mother-Daughter relationship. 

I am grateful for these almost 6 years at home with her.  I know I will probably look back at these days as the best days of my life.  She and I have been through so much together.  So much fun and some sadness.  I am grateful to have a daughter.  There's something special between us.  We are so much alike and definitely going to butt heads when she's a teenager.  (poor Allen)  But my girl is the perfect combination of strong, but sweet.  Smart, but humble.  Polite, but not a pushover.  I think she's pretty amazing.  And she can do anything she wants in life.

So for the next chapter.  I'm feeling the pressure to let go and loosen the slack a little.  Perfect example:  I had an adorable outfit picked out for her first day of school.  She had another outfit in mind.  The clearanced $3.00 flamingo tank top she picked out at Target. I wanted the first day of school pictures to be...well, picture perfect.  But she made a valid point.  She said "it's MY first day of Kindergarten."  And she was right.  So she wore her flamingo tank top, pink skirt and no bows or headband in her hair.  She's a smart girl.  Guess the good news is, she was listening all those times I told her to speak her mind, stand up to people and be a decision maker.  I just didn't realize she was going to use that advice on ME! :)

I cried off and on for four hours today.  Totally not kidding.  And I'm not even a cryer!  And when I say cry, I mean the ugly face, sobbing out loud cry.  Just being honest.  Luckily, Garrett is a little man and I think he was oblivious to all of it!  So I cried it out, and now I got it all off my chest here.  I'm going to pull myself together.  No more crying.  I've taken full advantage of these almost 6 years with my girl.  I've been here for everything.  I've taught her all the important things so far.  I put band aids on the boo boos, I cleaned the poop and the spills, I snuggled, I tickled, I watched Snow White and Monster's Inc., I played Barbies, I took her to the zoo, water park and playground.  I've been here for her when she was sick.  I've been exactly the Mom I set out to be.  I haven't been perfect, but I've been present.  And now I can confidently send her out into the world, knowing I have no regrets.  And knowing I will be sitting in front of that school picking her up every day.  Coming home and hearing about how school was.

Garrett and I spent our first day of all day Kindergarten baking cookies, making homemade cards & decorating the kitchen table.  We are throwing a surprise "happy first day of Kindergarten" party for Sydney when she gets home.  Just the three of us. 

So, ready or not, the next chapter is beginning.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Skinny Love

This song is one of the best songs I've ever heard.  I have been listening to Bon Iver for a while now and I still just can't get enough of "Skinny Love".  It's amazing.  And this particular performance is especially amazing.  If you haven't already, you must get to know Bon Iver!


Wednesday, August 4, 2010

A Girl Has The Right To Change Her Mind

So it seems I have changed my mind on several topics. 

First, I started blogging here at the first of the year.  However, I have decided to move on over to Blogger!  So if you'd like to read my story up to this point, feel free to check out my tumblr.

So here's my story thus far, in a nut shell.  I'm a 32 year old stay at home mom to two kids.  Sydney (almost 6) and Garrett (2).  I've been married to Allen for almost 9 years.  We dated for 4.  And we became friends 18 years ago.  Yikes!  That makes me feel old!  I love being home with my kids, I love cooking, I love music and I love a glass of wine from time to time!

Maybe it's my age or maybe it's the experience of seeing my Dad (my hero) die in my arms 3 years ago that has awakend a part of me that had been sleeping.  I have completely changed my life in a very short time.  It's amazing when you realize that certain things you always believed are no longer your truths. 

I have detoxed my life one baby step at a time.  It began with giving up all soda 1 1/2 years ago.  I haven't had a drop since and will never drink it again.  I gave it up because I didn't want my kids to drink it.  It's best to lead by example, so it was time to be a grown up and start kicking my bad habits!  Next, I went off birth control pills once I realized they were messing with my head and my body!  After having Garrett, my body reacted differently to birth control and it wasn't pretty.  I actually worried I was entering menopause at an extremely young age!  Once I stopped taking the pills, the fog in my head lifted, the irritability ended, and I felt like myself for the first time in a long time.  I will never take them again!  In fact, I hope to never take any pills, except for the occasional Tylenol or Antibiotic.  But only when absolutely necessary. 

So once I made the connection that what we put in our bodies directly effects how we feel, think, sleep, treat others, etc.  I began educating myself on organic & local eating.  Now we eat REAL food, mostly organic and mostly local.  My pantry used to be full of boxes of "food".  Now the pantry is filled with beans, pasta, flour, sugar, etc.  I make REAL food for my family to eat.  You won't find a frozen chicken nugget in this house!  And now I have moved to the bathroom cabinets and thrown out all products with toxic chemicals.  All it takes is a little education to change the way you perceive the world around you. 

So I have gone from an overweight, worn down, tired unhealthy girl to what I am today...which is still a work in progress! :)  And although I still have some more weight to knock off, I feel, eat, sleep and think better than I have in a decade.  I eat well, I exercise, I get plenty of sleep and I try not to sweat the small stuff now.

My motto for life now is a quote by George Eliot - "It's never too late to be what you might have been".  And I am going to be everything I ever wanted to be in this life! 

So, on the topic of changing my mind.  I tried out making my own laundry soap for a while and I have now decided that I HATE doing it & it doesn't get our clothes clean enough.  So I'm a Tide girl at the moment and it's pathetic how happy it makes me to sniff and feel our freshly washed clothes.  I'm telling ya, the whites really are whiter & and everything is softer!  No more clouds of borax & washing soda dust drifting in the air of my kitchen as I mix it all in my food processor!  I'm so over it!  Not to mention, I don't think it was great to be sniffing those powdery fumes.  Now in my journey of non-toxic products, I'm sure I'll end up using Seventh Generation.  But honestly, I had never bought Tide because it was so expensive and I just wanted to know what it was like!  It's pretty awesome.  And it's pretty pathetic that I have so much to say about laundry soap! :)

Lastly, I stated in the past that I didn't believe in organized religion.  Well, just to clarify, I didn't really believe in it for about a decade.  But recently I was feeling pulled in that direction.  I made the leap and went to church and have been going ever since.  It feels good, it feels right and I'm glad my kids are going to grow up with it.  I have been realizing that part of what is wrong with our society today is the lack of church and God in people's lives.  Believe me, I never would have been saying something like this a year ago.  But remember, a girl always has a right to change her mind!