Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Could you sleep?

As is usual during the holiday season, our mailbox has been inundated with catalogs. I rarely bother to look, because I'd rather skip most of that aspect of the season. When Patagonia came, though, I couldn't help but flip through because theirs is usually pretty interesting.

This picture was my favorite:

I think Zach is crazy for enjoying rock climbing as much as he does. Pulled muscles, injured tendons, major blisters, stiff joints, callouses on top of callouses... Not my idea of fun, but he loves it. Thankfully, though, he was sane enough to agree that those guys are completely out of their minds!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Things I Love: Y

1. yarn - and almost anything made from yarn
2. yardwork - but only when the weather is nice...not too hot and not too cold! I'm definitely a fair-weather worker!


...Taylor Baby #3! A boy! He's beautiful and healthy and we're so thankful! And, yes, now I'm officially the mother of three boys. Isn't there a special place in heaven for mothers of all boys??? Or, maybe it's just a padded room, which could be equally as appropriate!

Now that we know it's a boy, Zach and I can finally start thinking about names. We should probably do that sooner rather than later. Fig worked fine before, but now it seems a little silly. Baby #3 seems a little cold. Yep. I think we're going to need to pick a name, and fast!

And, being as how I had just introduced you to my two sonshines, now it's three! Thank God the domain was available. I wouldn't have wanted to start from scratch!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Things I Love: X

1. ?

I'm sorry. I'm at a total loss. There may be something that starts with an x that I really do love and appreciate. However, at the moment I just can't think of one. I could desperately say x-treme something or xeric something, but I'm just not feeling it. So, I'm sorry, but today I think I'll have to pass...

Monday, November 23, 2009

Things I Love: W

1. women - I'm thankful I am one and I'm thankful for all the incredible others I have in my life.
2. worship

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Things I Love: V

1. visual stimulation - but, I have to keep limits. For instance, NO Pottery Barn catalogs within about an hour of bedtime or I just can't sleep!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Friday, November 20, 2009

Things I Love: T

1. traditions
2. time with Zach (when did things change so much so that now it's a luxury?)
3. thesauruses
4. tacos - Actually, Mexican food, in general. When I did "M", I missed it. When I did "L" I forgot Los Cuates (my favorite restaurant). Good grief! How did I miss listing something so incredible? Twice! I obviously wasn't thinking.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Things I Love: S

1. snuggling
2. stretching

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Where have all the good stories gone?

For those (three or four) of you who read my blog regularly, you may have noticed a decided and probably disappointing lack in the ever-humorous Caleb and Owen material lately.

That's because I had a new project in the works. Like I need a new project, right? But, this one was extra important because I know, someday, it will have been well worth the effort.

So, without further ado, I'd like to introduce you to...

...My Two Son[s]shines! Happy reading!

Things I Love: R

1. recipes
2. reading

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Monday, November 16, 2009

Things I Love: P

1. pastries
2. purpose
3. peaceful moments
4. pregnancy
5. popcorn

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Things I Love: O

1. opportunity
2. office (the office)
3. onion rings

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Immeasurable Value

Another interesting quote from a book I'm reading:

"Keep a clear eye toward life's end. Do not forget your purpose and destiny as God's Creature. What you are in His sight is what you are and nothing more. Remember that when you leave this earth, you can take nothing you have received...but only what you have given; a full heart enriched by honest service, love, sacrifice and courage."

I think that's a great exhortation. The part that really struck me, though, was:

"What you are in His sight is what you are and nothing more."

Yes, there are people out there who believe that they are God's specific gift to mankind, for whatever reason. However, the much more common human response, I've found, is that we continually sell ourselves short of the value that He placed on us. Regardless of whatever specific and individual things He sees when He looks at each of us, He sees someone that's worth an immeasurable price.

Which leads me to another quote I really enjoy:

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same." -Marianne Williamson

It all just makes me wonder. Concerning our worth, if we really did let God be true and every man (ourselves) a liar, just what could we accomplish for His kingdom? I really think the sky is the limit.

Things I Love: N

1. noodles
2. naps (esp. w/ Zach on Sunday afternoons)
3. novels

Friday, November 13, 2009

Things I Love: M

1. music
2. motherhood
3. movies

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Things I Love: L

1. limes
2. lip gloss/chapstick - I'm really not sure whether I could survive without it

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Things I Love: K

1. kids - but I'm definitely partial to my own
2. kisses
3. kindred spirits - (rather, God-appointed relationships, but that doesn't start with a K!) it's such an incredible experience to be with someone and just know that you fit together!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Things I Love: J

1. justice - thank God it's ultimately in His hands and not ours!
2. juice
3. jammies

Monday, November 9, 2009

Things I Love: I

1. internet - so much information at my fingertips!
2. ice cream - Mmm...with a capital M.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Things I Love: H

1. holidays
2. helping mommies (before and during birth)

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Things I Love: G

1. grace
2. grass - especially freshly mown
3. giggles - especially from my boys and especially when they turn into full-fledged belly laughs

Friday, November 6, 2009

Things I Love: F

1. family and friends
2. fuzzy blankets
3. fragrance
4. forever21.com - who knew you could find so much fun, cheap jewelry in one spot!?!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Things I Love: E

1. exotic travel destinations (islands, mountains, jungles, etc.) - I can't really say that I've ever been to any, but I can dream, right? (Some day, Zach, I promise!)
2. eating - I just can't deny it. The flavors, aromas, textures, colors... It's such a simple pleasure! (Thank you God, again, for good genes and a fast metabolism!)
3. exercise
4. early bedtimes - for the boys AND me!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Things I Love: D

1. diphenhydramine (aka Benadryl) - it really can be a mom's best friend
2. dancing
3. decorating - one of my favorite things to do!
4. days spent outside

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

An idea!

I'm sure that you all know me well enough to know that when I spoke of OCD in my last post, I in no way was poking fun or making light of what really can be a serious form of bondage. I actually did have some obsessive compulsive activities that I had to perform when I was little. Thank God I grew out of that! But, speaking of OCD, just to show you that I really do have those tendencies...

As soon as I published my last post, a list of three things I love, I almost had to revise the list. Why?

1. Lists
2. Libraries
3. Maple donuts

The first two things start with an L and the third one doesn't. I seriously almost had to change my list, just so that it'd be consistent. Yikes. Instead, I had a better idea. (Although this also reveals even more of my anal-retentive weirdness.)

I just noticed that Thanksgiving falls on the 26th of November this year. The 26th. Wait a minute! There are 26 letters in the alphabet. I could post a small list of things I'm thankful for each day and end with Z on Thanksgiving day!!! (Okay, I know it's really not that exciting, but humor me, please!) Maybe I'd seem a little more normal if you knew that there have been a lot of alphabet goings-on in our house lately. In pre-school, Caleb's class focuses on a new letter each week. Lots of tracing. Show and tell must start with the designated letter. Etc. Also, in lieu of other more bedtime appropriate songs, Owen keeps asking me to sing him the ABCs each time I put him to bed. The impressive part is that he's getting darn good at singing them on his own. He can get all the way from A to P with only a few slip ups and then he mumbles his way to a very proud Z. His favorite part, however, is still the "sing with me" that comes at the end. Aww...

So, anyways, being as how it's already the 3rd, I'll have to play catch up today, but no biggie! Here goes...

1. amazon.com - They really make it too easy to buy books, and practically everything else under the sun.
2. adirondack chairs - sooo comfy!
3. afternoon sunbeams

1. bubbles
2. boys - Zach, Caleb and Owen, in particular, but my daddy and brother are both extra special, too! I've definitely learned that these guys can frustrate me, make me fume and send me into a fit of tears faster than a bolt of lightning. But, I've also learned that far more often they make me laugh to the point of tears and they can also melt my heart with a single smile. I wouldn't have it any other way.
3. being a girl - just thinking about the aforementioned boys or any others, for that matter, makes me want to shout from the rooftops: "Thank God I'm a girl!!!"

1. colored pencils - I know it's probably more cool to like crayons, but they just don't have the artistic flexibility for shading like colored pencils do. They've always been my weapon of choice, and I've definitely won a few coloring contests in my time!
2. craigslist.com - I'm trying to not be addicted, but I think I may be failing.
3. communion

By the way, an attitude of gratitude is, for most of us, something that has to be cultivated. It's sad, but true. So feel free to comment and leave your own lists of things you're thankful for! It makes for a merry heart and that's even better than medicine!

An Attitude of Gratitude

'Tis the season to ponder thankfulness and, accordingly, that's what's been on my mind lately. And, in continuation of the theme of my last post, I'm becoming more and more aware that your attitude primarily depends on how you choose to look at and process the things around you.

It's that idea of choosing to see the glass-half-full. Choosing to see the world through rose-colored glasses.

Some might argue that it's a pretty naive and ignorant way to go about your business. However, I'm thinking it's more in line with doing the Father's business. After all, if you're feeling satisfied and joyful, are you not more likely to walk in love and to sow seeds of satisfaction and joy in the lives of everyone you meet?

This blog started as a way to recognize the things in my life that make it so amazing, so breathtaking. Once again, I've been surprised at just how little and seemingly trivial those things can be. I've been reading a fiction series that was recommended to me and, even though it's not quite as consuming as works by Picoult or other authors I enjoy, it is simple, uplifting and easy on the soul. What, really, could be better? One of the main characters is often asked to list things that she loves. Even though the things she lists are sometimes ordinary and mundane, the list is on the tip of her tongue. Her thankfulness is at-the-ready and she's not above finding it in the everyday. How perfect! What an example!

So, while going about my morning with Owen today, I decided I want to, from time to time, make similar lists. Here goes:

What do I love?

1. Lists! I'm sure it's something that appeals to my obsessive compulsive side, but I just can't deny it. There's something about the order and feel of a good list that just makes me happy! (One of my favorite comics shows a person explaining that they do not have OCD. They were adamant that the diagnosis was not correct. Instead, they insisted they had CDO, because OCD just didn't make sense - it was completely out of order. Ha!)

2. The library! Owen and I had a wonderful time at the library this morning. (I'm sure part of why it was wonderful was because he was well behaved the entire time, but still...) What's not to love about the library?

I let Owen be "a big boy" and walk the entire time. He compliantly held my hand every time it was necessary. First, we went to the adult fiction to get a book for me. While we were walking through the extra quiet section, he felt the need to say, "Darn it!", in his fairly loud voice. I'm not sure why he needed to say that, but he did. I reminded him with a whisper that we were supposed to use our library voices. In return, he whispered, "Oh. Darn it!" Ha!

They didn't have one of the books I wanted, but on our way to the kids' section, I saw it on an end cap. It wasn't a lending copy, but it was a used (practically new) copy that the library was selling - for $2! If it hadn't been on the end of the row, I never would have seen it. I only had a $10, but I actually found that I had over $2 in dimes, so Owen got the pleasure of dropping 20 coins into a little collection box. Fun for both of us!

There's lots of other reasons I love the library - free magazines, an almost unlimited supply of information that is free for the borrowing, it's quiet, it smells like books, it makes me want to study... I could go on. Oh. And another reason is because the boys get to practice their water fountain skills each time we go. Caleb almost has it down. He's finally understanding the push-the-button first and then approach-to-drink tactic. It's been quite some time since he's squirted himself in the face. You'd think it'd only take once to figure that out, but you'd be surprised... He's growing up! Owen, on the other hand, isn't quite strong enough to get the button pushed yet. His day is coming, though. His squirt-in-the-face day, that is. He always puts his face about an inch from the nozzle. What a fun thing to watch. Aagh... Isn't life grand?

3. Maple donuts. (No explanation needed.)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

An invitation...

...to think about things a little differently. Actually, I think this is more like an invitation to participate in an exercise to change the way our brains tend to work. I came across this quote the other day and it has definitely challenged me:

"An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered. An inconvenience is only an adventure wrongly considered."
- G. K. Chesterton

How prone I am to this way of thinking! A trap, really. Why is it that a deluge of rain on my first mountain biking adventure turned it into unforgettable fun while slow checkout lines or waylaid plans always throw me into a frenzy of frustration?

(Actually, that's probably a bad example. The deluge of rain made it impossible to ride. We were forced to walk/push our bikes through the sludge for the entire second half of the "ride". Of course I would enjoy walking a bike rather than riding it - the likelihood that I would go careening into a rock was considerably reduced! Of course that would be my preference! But, I'm sure you get my point.)

Anyways. Anyone up for starting an adventure club with me?

Friday, October 23, 2009

A Message for David J. Godec:

PS - Notice how the sweat band shows up so clearly in the picture? Eewww. Now that's just nasty.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

I Lost 5 Pounds Today.

How in the world, you might ask, did I accomplish such a feat? (Especially while pregnant?)

I cleaned out my purse.

Yep. I'm embarrassed to say, but it really was that bad. A task that had become long overdue.

What got tossed?

  • 2 Dum Dum suckers
  • a huge stack of receipts, already recorded and totally unnecessary
  • several old grocery lists
  • a fig newton (still in the wrapper, thank God) that was smashed beyond recognition
  • an empty tea tin that I don't want to get rid of - it's pink and it's the kind that pops open when you push on the center!
  • 2 of my cocktail rings that must have gotten in the way so I pulled them off
  • a half-eaten granola bar, thank you Owen (still in it's wrapper, too - whew!)
  • an empty package of gum
  • Caleb's half-eaten package of animal crackers from Sunday School
  • my envelope of ultrasound pictures (Oh, beautiful fig!)
  • parts that broke off of Caleb's scooter - these have, honest to goodness, been riding around in there since mid-July. I had no intention of putting them back on. They're completely unnecessary parts, but apparently I felt they were important enough to lug them around on my shoulder for 3 months.
  • May's cat collar that's too big and keeps slipping off. Hey! I figure if it's in my purse at least it's not getting lost somewhere in the house where it'd be really hard to find!
Last and worst of all...
  • a really embarrassing amount of dry cat food that was rattling around in the bottom of every pocket - the result of a feed-the-cat-on-the-way-out-the-door disaster of cat food flying through the laundry room. Ugh.
Like I said, this was definitely overdue. Next, I guess, it's my car. I don't think I'll tell you what I find in there, though. I'm horrified to think of the discoveries that await me. All I will say, though, is that I'm sure the things I find in there (like the things in my purse) are mostly not my fault. Boys...ick.

Monday, October 5, 2009

The Prettiest Fig

It is my immense pleasure to present to you one of the first pictures of Taylor Baby #3. Or, as she (we're speaking in faith) has lovingly been referred to lately, "Fig". According to the website I've been following during this pregnancy, that's about the size of a baby at 11 weeks...a fig. Only one and a half inches long, but oh-so-incredible already. It was breathtaking to watch on the screen as she squirmed and wriggled inside of me. Such huge movements for such a teeny body, and I don't yet feel a thing. So weird. It's only been about 9 weeks since conception and already her little body is almost completely formed. Her job now is to continue to mature and grow like crazy. She even has the beginnings of fingernails and tiny little teeth buds. It blows me away!

What an incredible gift, to be able to carry new life inside of you. To know that, in your belly, a new little life is growing, developing and being nurtured. Jesus, I thank You that Your hand has been on this little one from the very beginning and that You continue to watch over her, shelter her and protect her. Keep her safe as she grows and develops inside of me, and I thank You that for all of her days, she will be led and taught by You.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Operation: Snail Rescue

Sorry for the blogging lull. I know it gets old checking for posts and finding...nothing. Life has been racing by at such a dizzying pace that it's making me feel a bit, well, slow, I guess. Like if I take the time to sit and blog for a few minutes, I'm sure to miss something. But, regardless, here goes...

Speaking of slow, I meant to blog about snails months ago and I completely forgot, until I unloaded the photos off my camera.

The night before my 30th Birthday, the boys spent the night with their Moma and Papa so that Zach and I could have a date. We had big plans for my birthday - a long hike, Vietnamese for lunch, some shopping, maybe a movie... Those plans were slightly altered, though, when we woke to find July 3rd a drizzly, soggy day. So, unfortunately, no hike, but we got ourselves together anyways and planned for a day out on the town, starting with coffee at a cool, little cafe Zach found down on Silver Street. Our day was further way-laid, though, when we went outside and found:

It may be hard to tell what those bumps all over our driveway are, but I'm sure you can guess - they're snails. The sog was forcing them out of the grass and up to higher, dryer ground and their mass exodus across the driveway was pretty impressive. I can't remember how many there were, exactly, but I do remember giving up counting when I got to 40. Needless to say, we couldn't just drive out, because we would have squished a ton of them. Thus began Operation: Snail Rescue. After relocating them all to the sidewalk, we were finally able to leave. We both got fairly soggy in the process, but it was fun!

And another quick snail story... A few weeks ago when the boys and I were heading out to do some errands, Caleb noticed a snail by the car that was covered in little black ants. I explained to him that it meant the snail had died. Being the super-compassionate kid that he is, he showed great remorse at the snail's misfortune.

The next day we were going out front so the boys could have some time riding bikes when Caleb found a healthy, crawling snail in the same place where the dead one had been. "Mom! Look! The snail is okay! Jesus healed the snail!!!" He was super excited. Trying to be the positive encourager, I remarked excitedly at how awesome it was that Jesus had healed the snail. Not two minutes later, I was completely distracted while walking across the drive and accidentally stepped right on the poor guy. That's right. I squished the miracle snail. If it's any recompense, I felt terrible about it all day, especially right after - when Caleb came and noticed the little pile of shell and goo. Believe me, having to tell your 5-year-old that you squished a miracle snail is no fun task.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Friday, July 17, 2009


This whole week, I've been completely overwhelmed. I am stretched. Thin. Just now, while searching for an image of a rubber band, I was thinking, "What happens when a rubber band is stretched?" The tension is eventually released, either because it flies away or because it breaks. I'd say that right now I'm just praying that I don't break, but that really sounds a bit dramatic. But, either way, I'm really just waiting for that release.

I'm not sure how it happens, but sometimes there's this phenomenal overload in which WAY more things land on your plate at once than you feel like you can handle. I definitely don't put myself in this situation on purpose, but sometimes it just happens. Life, I guess. Anyways, Zach and I were both feeling rather defeated and it caused me to really go through everything that's on my calendar/plate this month:

  • turning 30
  • refinancing our house
  • broken dryer
  • HUGE laundry backlog
  • a necessary trip to the MVD
  • a nightmare of a bookkeeping client
  • Quarterly Payroll Reports
  • Gross Receipts Tax Reports
  • selling an investment (finally!!!)
  • LOTS of battles to fight to get things done
  • hosting a new doula client for dinner
  • and, therefore, having to get my house cleaned
  • Caleb's 5th Birthday (how could that be?)
  • staging/decorating a home that's for sale (two more in the cue)
  • dentist appointment
  • meetings and dinners
  • and the grand finale, a wedding that will truly be THE event of the season!
Okay. Listing it out didn't really make me feel any better, but that's only because I was already fully aware of everything that's going on right now. No surprises. But, I think it was necessary, if only to justify the basketcase-edness that I've been experiencing for the last several weeks. Surely a list like that would inarguable justify a few breakdowns and fits of tears, right? Wow, I sound whiny right now. This is not to say that any particular thing that is happening is bad. Compared to the trials that some people are experiencing, this is actually an overload of good things, and for that I am truly thankful. I just have to keep reminding myself of that in the midst of the day-to-day battle of getting it all done.

I think the only real struggle is that I haven't been able to sleep. Those of you who know me well know that I need sleep. Like 9 hours. Every night. As you can see by the time-stamp, though, I'm posting in the wee hours. This is my 4th night in a row of not-enough sleep, like 4 to 6 hours. Once or twice is fine, but this is getting to be a large enough deficit for my taste, thank-you-very-much. I thought I'd finally be able to sleep tonight because we closed on the sale of our investment house this evening - a HUGE answer to prayer. Nevertheless, there's still so much on my mind that here I sit in the pitch black, wide awake. I think insomnia is probably worse than Chinese water torture, although I can't say that from any real, first-hand experience. But, it seems like a reasonable comparison. So, pleeeaase pray that I can get some sleep!

Okay. Enough for now. Thank you for letting me indulge in a pity party. I don't know that it really accomplished anything. They rarely do. But, sitting here typing is definitely better than laying in bed and NOT sleeping. I guess I'll go try (more) soft music, (more) prayer and (more) reading. And probably a good dose of Tylenol. This not-sleeping business leaves me with a headache!


PS - I've already received a HUGE amount of help in getting things done. Zach, Mom, Dad, Jennie... Thank you SO much for bailing me out. I really needed it and, honestly, couldn't do it without you.

The Weekend in Words

What a wonderful weekend we had last week! Definitely the stuff good memories are made of, and yet, here it is almost a full week later, and I still haven't had the chance to blog about the incredible times we had. (More on "the busy-ness" later.) Anyways, the only thing that could possibly have made it better was if Zach had been able to join in the festivities. Unfortunately he was busy working on various projects throughout the weekend. Such is life these days. But, nonetheless, it really was a fabulous weekend. Every time I think of all we did and saw, it scrolls through my mind in a series of words and images. I'll have to post some of the pictures later, but for now, the words:

water park, fun in the sun, freedom from fear, shrieks of laughter, lots and lots of sunscreen, soggy boys, soggy mommy, soggy Auntie and Uncle, picnic with a super-special Birthday Lady, boys conked out in their car seats, driving through Corrales for the-fun-of-it, dinner with family, riding bikes, time with good friends, lots of babies in tow, morning walk, country fun, grower's market, soft pretzels, artisans, first sno cone, first bus ride, Caleb's head peeking out the window, Caleb's laughter, "Now this is what I call HIGH SPEED!", lavendar fields, glorious lilly pond, beautiful gardens, new discoveries, craftsmanship, pomegranate tree, fig tree, roaming peacocks, albino peacock, artichoke blossoms, found a peacock feather, lost a peacock feather, (bummed about the peacock feather), bamboo tunnel, dirty boys, farm animals, "moooooo", pizza with friends, watermelon juice dripping from a chubby chin, more gardens, found TWO peacock feathers, boys conked out in their car seats (again), dinner with hubby...

Like I said, wonderful.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Happy Birthday, to me!

This is it. Tomorrow is the big 3-0. Really, in my mind, it's the first real milestone birthday where the aging issue actually comes into play. Turning 20? At that point you're almost to 21 and to adulthood. You're too busy having fun to care one way or another. Turning 30, though, is a whole different can of worms.

And what, you may ask, are my thoughts on turning 30? Who cares? The older the better, I say! Every passing year has been full of more joy, more life and more love. So why would I worry about getting older? Bring it on! (Although I do reserve the right to change my answer once gravity starts to kick in, once I start finding gray hairs and once my skin is pruney even before a good soak.)

As for my thoughts about this birthday thing and life-in-general right now, they were summed up perfectly by a super-dear friend that sent this card to me in the mail today. Are you ready?

Wait for it...

Wait for it...

Ha! Really, I couldn't have said it better. I love, LOVE, looove my boys (all three of them), but I'm definitely ready for a break from the little two. The 24/7 nature of mommy-hood is starting to wear me down. But, I'm fixing to get a break. My sweet hubby picked up on the fact that my frazzled nerves are wearing thin and is sending me out for the afternoon. (I wonder what it was that tipped him off? The bleary, blood-shot eyes? Or maybe it's the way I've taken to screaming "What do you want from me?" every time someone says my name?)

Out to do what? I don't know. He said, "Whatever the heck it is that you girls do."

Buy another pair of brown sandals because the 3 pairs that are already in the closet aren't quite right? Rip the hair out of our bodies with hot wax for the fun of it? Smear goo on our faces to make us feel more youthful and vibrant? (Now that I put it that way, is sounds like we're a pretty weird lot. No wonder guys don't get us. But, I wouldn't have it any other way. Thank God for my two Xs!!!)

So, anyways. I'm set to escape for the afternoon. Zach even told me that I don't have to come home until after the two monsters are tucked into bed. Yippieee! Whatever will I do with myself? I'm thinking I might try a hot yoga class. I've always been curious. (Mostly about whether or not I'd pass out before the class was through.) No telling where the day will take me! I'll fill you in later. For now I've got some time to spend doing whatever the heck I want, followed by at least 2 solid days of birthday celebration, so I'd better get to it!

PS - Chris, the angels might sing on your birthday, but have you ever had parades and fireworks in your honor? Those are for me, right?

PS#2 - Zach, thank you SO much for the incredible man, husband and father that you are. I'm blessed to have you! Thank you for understanding my need to disappear for a while. You're amazing and I'm so blessed that you're mine!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009


Have you ever felt like you've got so many balls up in the air that at any given moment everything will just go flying off into different directions? That you're responsible for this ever-expanding, filmy-thin bubble that, with one wrong turn, is going to pop? Do you ever feel like you just want to throw your hands up in the air with abandon, let everything fall where it may, scream "to hell with it all" and race off into the sunset? (Of course you'd still have to take your family into the sunset with you, because what good would life be without them anyways? But still. I'm sure you get my point.)

I'm almost there.

Sometimes when people are pressed they'll say, "If it's not one thing, it's another." What if it's five others? Or six? Or seven?

The other thing I often hear people say is, "God doesn't give us any more than we can handle."

Bull. I've never liked that sentiment. It pretty clearly sends the message that all this "stuff" is from God. The God I know and love gives life and gives it abundantly. When things start pressing in and smothering, it sure doesn't feel like God to me. I don't think this is how He meant for life to feel.

In the face of challenge, there's only one thing I've ever heard that feels like life to me.

I Am.

It's probably the shortest complete sentence ever, but, Oh! How complete it is! In our mode of do-it-all and be-it-all, it'd be tempting to want to complete the sentence with something, anything. But, that's beside the point. I think He left it open-ended on purpose. That's the only way it can really be complete.

I Am.

Your place of refuge. Your provider. Your ever-present help in time of need. The beginning. The end. Your shepherd. The one who calms storms with His word. The one who brings life with His word. The way. The truth. The life.

It's amazing just how much can be communicated with two little words, if you believe them.

Everything that I need, the solution to every trial, is found in Him.

By Jesus' own example, when the crowds started to press in on Him, He left. So why can't/won't we do the same? What's the difference? His obligations and commitments were so much more important than ours. If He was able to drop everything and retreat to a place of rest, in His Father's presence, then why can't I? Why is it that meeting with my clients, doing my work, organizing a birthday party, cleaning my house (etc.) are all so pressing that they can't be put off? And, really, that's beside the point. Because who am I to worry about all my "to do-s" when there are so many others just longing to find shelter from the wind and the cold, or wondering when they will eat again? Why is it that my truly trivial worries seem so all-consuming?

Priorities, I guess. I don't want to acknowledge that, though, because if that's the case, then mine are most certainly out of whack. I think that a serious reality check is in order, followed by a very thorough dose of I Am.

Friday, June 26, 2009

The Week In Review

And, oh, what a week it's been! This is for you, Momo and Papa! (They are off gallivanting across the country, so they've missed out on the day-to-day.) Here's a not-so-quick recap:

Thursday, June 18th
The gallery that is featuring some of Dave's photos opened tonight. It was fun and, well, interesting. The gallery is downtown and actually getting out into some of the city night life made me feel old and out of it. I guess I am, but I think I'm happy that way. As Debbie T. put it, while we were standing in the gallery, "I think we might be a little white bread for this place." It was true, but oh well. One of Dave's pictures (in his cool, custom metal frame) was auctioned off and it went for the highest bid out of all the auctioned pieces! Yay, Dave!

Friday, June 19th
I'd promised Caleb that we'd go to a local water park ("sprayground") for him to play, but he brought a cough home from VBS last week. That put our water plans on hold, temporarily. I felt bad, though, so...this evening we broke out the Slip 'n Slide!!!

We were pretty curious to see what the boys would do. But, it was kind-of a non-event. At least for the boys, that is. Owen didn't want anything to do with it. Caleb was coaxed to go up and down it a few times, but only with me holding his hands and dragging him up and down and back and forth. Every time he did it on his own, I think he was scared to dive down onto his tummy, so he'd just try to run the entire length of the thing. Needless to say, that didn't work. So, it looked like the Slip 'n Slide was going to be a dud...until Chris, Jane and Haven drove up. By the look in her eye, you could tell that Jane wanted to give it a whirl the second she laid eyes on that slippery, yellow stretch of plastic. And she did herself proud! By the end of the evening Zach and I had both tried it too, but not with as much finesse and skill as Jane had managed. That girl can slip AND slide.

Saturday, June 20th
The boys and I helped Faerl shop for shoes for her wedding while Zac
h went for a day-long mountain bike ride. Zach came away from his endeavors happy and tired, but with scratches, scars and mud all over. The boys and I had a great time and we helped Faerl find a great pair of shoes. Although, as Momo can attest, Caleb's style is a little extreme. During the course of the morning, he suggested about 20 pairs of shoes that were much more along the lines of "street walker" rather than "wedding chic". What can I say? My boy's sense of style is a bit on the wild side. (More on that in a minute...)

Sunday, June 21st
Happy Father's Day! We missed you, Papa! The d
ay was wonderful, but definitely not complete without a hug from my Daddy. I took a raincheck, so you'll have to pay up as soon as you get home.

Monday, June 22nd
Laundry...ick. Although, I think I'm on to something. I just started a new bottle of fabric softener and this time, instead of buying the cheap-o S
uavitelle that has all the writing on the bottle in Spanish, I splurged the extra $2 and got a bottle of Downy. A bulk-sized, 150 load bottle of Downy, mind you. It smells SO much better! I think it may actually make doing the laundry a more pleasurable task. It's still a chore, for sure, but at least a little more enjoyable with the new softener. Now if I could only figure out how to get the laundry to march itself Fantasia-style off to its respective drawer/hanger/closet/etc, now THAT would be something! (I told Zach I was just going to build a huge bin in the middle of the house and throw all the clean laundry in there and it'd stay there until someone pulled it out to wear it. He wasn't too keen on the idea, but I swear I might just try it someday.)

Tuesday, June 23rd

Picnic with Zach @ the park during his lunch break. It was nice, as usual, to get to have time with him during the work day. We got home just in time.
..there was a massive thunder and rain storm right after I got the boys laid down for their afternoon naps. I'm surprised they were able to sleep, though. The thunder was so loud that it was setting off all the neighborhood car alarms!

Wednesday, June 24th
Another massive rain storm. Yay! Zach r
ode his bike to work in the morning and then we picked him up so we could go to church together. Good thing we did, too, because he would have been soaked in the downpour! (PS - Momo and Papa, I have no idea if it's been raining at your house.)

Thursday, June 25th
This evening we had our monthly Book Club meeting. (The Book Club that doesn't read books.) We had a picnic at a park and it was lovely. A little soggy, but not bad. Everyone had a great time. We missed you, Mom!

And, while I was at Book Club, Zach and Caleb had what has come to be known as "Guy Night". A few days prior, Zach asked Caleb what he wanted for dinner for their guy night. He said, "Sushi." Good grief. Who needs a 4-year-old that likes sushi?!? But, it turns out that maybe it wasn't meant to be. When I got home, I found out that he'd been puking his poor little guts out all evening. Maybe that's a slight exaggeration, in that his guts didn't actually come out. I'm pretty convinced, though, that they would have if they weren't so well attached. The poor little guy heaved into the middle of the night! Poor thing! He had been fine until dinner. So, we're thinking we just discovered that Caleb is allergic to shell fish!

Oh, and one more thing. Earlier I mentioned Caleb's fashion sense. Well, this is what he chose to wear today:

Yes, those are black tights under his shorts. He thinks they're running pants (like mine), so he wants to wear them. They're actually black tights that he wore for his Harvest Party costume when he was 2! The crotch is barely above his knees, but he apparently thinks the discomfort is a small price to pay in the name of being a true fashion icon!

Friday, June 26th
We finally made it to the sprayground! As I suspected would happen, neither of the boys really cared much for the water. Owen was plenty excited to watch it and yell, "Wattie, wattie!" But, he definitely didn't like getting sprayed. Caleb did okay, in that there were no accidental dousings and subsequent meltdowns. But he really didn't get all that wet. I was actually the wettest out of all three of us, and all I was trying to do was get them into the water. Good grief. The only pictures I got were during lunch time, but there were a few good ones. Oh, and I had to keep a close eye on Owen, he kept walking up to other kids' shoes, slipping his feet in and walking off! And, when he wasn't stealing shoes he was busy flirting with all the little ladies. I think he felt extra confident in his lizard trunks!

And, the grande finale...Wiggle Bootie!

This video is actually from Friday evening when we were doing Slip 'n Slide. I chose not to include it under any specific day, however, because Wiggle Bootie is more the result of an evolution of skill and excitement. I think you (Momo and Papa) had even seen it once or twice before you left. But, each time he does it the wiggle gets better and better. I think this boy lives to perform! So, without further ado, I give you Wiggle Bootie:

Wednesday, June 17, 2009


If I were a puzzle piece, I'd want to be the one that gets to snuggle right up next to you. Actually, that's the only way I'd have it. I insist. Because, you're the one for me.

If life was a puzzle (which oftentimes it is), I'd want to work it out with you. If I've learned anything over the last 9 years, it's been that life with you, whether in good times or bad, really is something to treasure. There's no one else I'd rather have by my side as we maneuver our way through the maze. (Plus your survival savvy and always-turn-right logic are sure to get us through any sticky situation. But, even if we get lost for a while, I have also learned that there's no one better to have an adventure with, than you.)

If you were a puzzle...wait a minute. You are a puzzle. Not so much in the manner of:

1. a toy, problem, or other contrivance designed to amuse by presenting difficulties to be solved by ingenuity or patient effort.

But, sort of. You definitely amuse. You can be difficult and you have certainly required some patient effort. (And so have I.) But, look at what an incredible result has come of that patient effort, on both our parts. And, I know the best is still yet to come. I am SO excited about growing old with you. Bring on the wrinkles and gray hair, as long as you're with me and getting them, too. I look forward to the future - our future. It's so very bright. Thank you for being my shining light.

Happy Anniversary, my dear Zach. I love you!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

What happens?

What happens when you gush mashed potatoes into your hair?

A super cool hair-do.

I might just try it sometime.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The Crazy Lady at the Gas Station

Okay. Everybody ready? Here we go...SNL cheerleaders style:

Who's-the-crazy-lady-at-the-gas-station? It's me! It's me!

Sorry for that. I just couldn't resist.

So, really. I came to the realization the other day that most people that see me fill my car with gas must thing I'm absolutely nuts. Why? Because I've discovered it's prime time for evoking some serious laughs from the boys.

One of Caleb's favorite games is when I stand right outside his window and whistle, staring off into the sky. He bangs his fist against the window and I jump and startle. He thinks it's hilarious. Owen's favorite is when I do the classic comedic illusion of pretending to walk down stairs until I'm out of sight. Then I pop back up and surprise them both. I'm sure I don't do the trick well, but how hard is it to please a not-quite-two-year-old? Not too hard. There's also a plethora of funny faces, growls and peek-a-boos, all of which lead to uncontrolled peals of laughter.

I think that's probably what led me to realize just how ridiculous I must look. I was in the middle of sticking out my tongue at the boys, complete with thumbs in ears and wiggling fingers, when I saw my reflection in the window. At that point, I also realized just how dark the tint is on my windows. I can see the boys, because I'm right up close. But, to the average station patron, I'm sure I look like a lunatic. I can hear it now. "Mom, why is that lady popping up and down and making faces at her car?" "I don't know Sweetie. Try not to stare. Let's go somewhere else."

Oh well. Will I stop? Heck no. Just one of those great belly laughs makes it all worth while, even if the cost is my dignity. This certainly isn't the first time it's been sacrificed in the name of motherhood, and I'm sure it won't be the last.

Friday, May 22, 2009

I'm SO Green.

Okay, maybe not that green, at least not the kind you're thinking. (Although, in my mind, it's definitely something to which we should all aspire.)

No. I'm talking green. Seriously. I've recently become aware of how sometimes favorites sneak up on a person. It almost feels like maybe they chose you, rather than the other way around. Know what I mean?

I think it started slowly. A green purse a few years back. No particular reason why, other than it was a nice size, had all the right pockets and I figured it'd go with just about everything. (You know, that fabulous match by not matching thing.) Anyways. Then it was a green phone. Then it was a green kitchen. (A little bit too green, but whatever. It's paint. It's easy to fix.) Then it was time for a new purse. Didn't really see any that I liked. They were all pink and orange and weird. I realized what it was I was looking for...something green. (And later I found it, bought it and love it!) It wasn't until today, though, that the weight of the obsession hit me, and really made me laugh. Walking into the library with my green purse, wearing my green scarf and carrying my green tote bag, I started to wonder... "Hmm. Is this too much green?" (I probably would have been wearing my green shoes, too - thank you, Faerl - if it wasn't flip flop season...got to take advantage of every second!)

And that's where the choosing ME part comes into play. If you asked me what my favorite color is, I wouldn't say green. (Not that I don't like it, I just feel like I'd be cheating on all the other fabulous colors out there if I were to specify a single one.) But for some reason that's completely unbeknownst to me, I just keep gravitating towards all things green.

I know my sister has experienced this same phenomenon. She took an objective look at the clothes in her closet one day and realized that the vast majority of her tops were all variations of the same thing...blue stripes. And even after making the discovery, she was still drawn to that very same thing every time she went shopping. Weird!

So, I'm curious. Has anyone else experienced this, or are we just the only two? If we are, it wouldn't surprise me. We're both a bit odd, but we'd love some company...please? I'd love to know if we're not alone and I'd love to know what kind of obsessions have taken you by surprise.

Do tell!

P.S. Fun fact: I just found a web site that gives the meanings of colors. It says that "...green is life. Abundant in nature, green signifies growth, renewal, health, and environment. On the flip side, green is jealousy or envy (green-eyed monster) and inexperience." Hmm. Interesting. (If I am jealous, it's probably because you have something green that I like!)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Laser Therapy, Here I Come!

You know how the truth hurts? Well, somehow children have an uncanny ability to speak the truth...mostly because they don't know that it CAN hurt.

Caleb was looking at my legs last night and he spotted a little patch of veins that were peeking through my fair skin. "Mom!" He was incredulous... "Do you have a tattoo of little purple squiggles on your leg?"

Yeow. (I really should be flattered, though. I knew they were there, so it wasn't any surprise to me. And, in actuality, I bet Caleb would LOVE to get a tattoo just like mine.) Oh well...

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Where did it go?

Can someone please help me? I've lost something, and can't even imagine where it might have gone...

Where? Oh where, has the time gone?

Today is the last day of Caleb's first year in school. Okay, so it was only preschool, but still. That part doesn't worry me. The part that takes my breath away is how fast it went. If every year goes as quickly as this one did, he'll be graduating from high school before I can even turn around.

Here's a picture of my little Caleb in August, on his first day of school:

And here's my little rock star now:

Note: In case you're concerned, he doesn't normally sport blue hair and tattoos. Although, maybe you should be, because, given the opportunity, he'd jump at the chance.

His preschool put on an end of the year rock performance a few weeks ago and my guy was definitely in his element. He didn't actually sing along to any of the songs. But, you'd better believe that his leg was bouncing, keeping time, and he was strumming his inflatable guitar through the whole show. (When he wasn't turned around backwards talking to his friends, that is, or blowing kisses to his mommy from the stage.) Aagh, my Caleb. I love him.

And, if that change and growth doesn't knock your socks off, check out "Tank", as Uncle Dave ("Un Da", in Owen-speak) has taken to calling him:

A year ago he was drooly and just learning to stand.

Baby, just look at you now. He's running, playing, talking. He's got dirt smeared on his face and he wishes with all his might that he was one of the big boys already. Before I know it, he will be.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

My Brother the Photographer

Dave took some photos lately that I really like. They were on my computer, so I figured I'd share.

Great work, Dave! Keep them coming.

And this picture was taken quite a while ago, almost 3 years ago, in fact. For obvious reasons, though, it'll always be my favorite.

PS - Happy Birthday, Dave!!!

Random and Bizarre

I've realized lately that a few of the thoughts that pop up in my head are just that...random and bizarre. I'm sure it's entirely due to being a mother and, in addition, mostly likely attributable to being a mother of boys.

A small sampling of those thoughts:

What's in your mouth? [Cat food - Owen. I thought he was looking a little extra chubby these days.]

What did you just say? ["Oh, snap." Yep. Caleb was watching a video with his daddy online and that's what he came up with. I finally figured out where he got that from - one of his favorite cartoons. The best part is that he misunderstood and what he really said was, "Oh, snaps."]

What did you just say? ["Doodie. Doodie." Knowing that boys usually have snakes, snails, puppy dog tails and all sorts of "icky" things in mind, you wouldn't immediately guess that this means drink, but it does. Just in the last week I've finally been able to figure out a bit of Owen's baby language. Doodie is drink, Lalo is Caleb. It's so much fun to actually be able to communicate - sort of - with him!]

Is that a lizard in your pants? [As a matter of fact, it was. It was a squishy, plastic one, but nonetheless, Owen had it in his pants. I'm sure big brother had a hand in helping with that one.]

That's it for now. Sorry the posts have been few and far between lately. But, believe me, it only means that we're busy enjoying life. The antics never stop, so I'll pass on a few more next time I get to catch my breath!

Lots of love,

Friday, February 20, 2009

Taylor #5

Meet May...the newest addition to the Taylor household.

If you are unfamiliar with our previous pet endeavors, you'll have to read back a little ways to Meet Squirt and the very prompt sequel, Rest in Peace, Little Squirt. After that brief review, it's obvious that we weren't going to go the fish route again. Dogs are awesome, but too much work. Reptiles are just creepy. A rock probably wouldn't have cut it for long. So, a cat. Zach and I both enjoy them, as long as they stay inside all the time--otherwise the itchy, red eyes and sneezing ensue.

Why did we need a pet in the first place? Probably the main reason is because it's been long enough since the last one that I've forgotten that they involve WORK and not just cuddling and playing. Oh well. The real, very-close-second-place reason is because the thought of Caleb's classmates asking about pets and him having absolutely nothing to report just broke our hearts. Every little boy needs a pet--thus, May.

She came from the parents of a sister's friend sort of relationship. They knew we were looking. Our first choice would have been a Hackett cat. I have never in my life seen any other cat that could be held upside down by one leg and still not fight back. Not that a cat should ever be treated that way, but...I'm a realist. It's going to happen. May came from a family with lots and lots of kids, though, and it's evident. She's an absolute sweetheart. She takes the poking, prodding, squeezing and tugging in stride and comes back for more. She hasn't scratched or squirmed once and, believe me, there have been plenty of instances where such behavior would have been absolutely justified. But, like I said, she's a sweet, sweet girl. (Stinky, if you ask me, but sweet.)

So, enough words, bring on the pictures...

Caleb is absolutely in love...

And the following little photo sequence makes me laugh! This is pretty much the exact order of how things "went down".

I knew Owen likes to throw down, but I really thought he was above cat-wrestling. Joking aside, though, he is also completely in love and I can attest to the fact that May has already received far more


and hugs
than Zach and I--combined! Not fair! I guess we just can't compete with little Miss May.

Friday, February 6, 2009

A little Friday fun...

Just wishing everyone a fun and happy weekend. And, as you go about your weekend's activities, have no fear...Superman's ever-watchful eye will be making sure you are safe.

If you think that's special, you should have seen it after he added his cowboy (scratch that), SUPERMAN boots to the ensemble. Ohh la la! If you ask me, Superman has never looked so good! (Although something tells me Faerl could come up with a striking superhero getup as well!)