A quick look back, and a happy New Year!

The boys got a huge kick out of sounding the steam whistles themselves … nothing like boys getting to make super-loud noises in the middle of the night!

Happy 2012 to you all!  We rang in the new year last night with our annual tradition of going to the steam whistle extravaganza down the street at the Pratt Institute (deets and video in the link).  It’s great fun for all, and participation is encouraged so the boys had a ball pulling the cords to blast the things off, listening to the calliope, and running around like maniacs playing with balloons. 

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A memorable summer

You know those summers you look back on in your childhood, that shine a bit brighter than the rest?  I hope you have some anyway.  I can’t pinpoint the exact year or event, but there are golden edges to some of my strongest summer memories.  I must have been about 12 when I spent what feels like the entirety of July and August alternating between swimming in our backyard pool, and lying on hot beach towels on the driveway, playing the Game of Life with the twins I was best friends with.  I can still feel the rough concrete of the driveway through my towel (why weren’t we on the lawn?!), I’m pretty sure my bathing suit was a lurid shade of purple, and I know Tracey always wanted to have so many kids in the game that she needed an extra car to haul them around in.  It was a perfect summer. 

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The roller coaster that is my mind

Fynn and I headed to our lessons this past winter … I have to say I won’t miss lugging that thing on the subway …I’ve been all over the map today, and am only starting to feel settled down at 9:30 at night.  Fynn’s in bed, exhausted, M’s working, the radio faintly playing in the kitchen, and our fans do battle with the humming of A/C in the buildings around me. 
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Happy Fathers Day

6KNPJZWTWRMXI have to give a shout out today to my husband.  The one who regularly talks me down off of ledges, the truly amazing father of my kids, and the real sanity-keeper around this house.  I’d probably be blogging from behind bars if it weren’t for him, and I thought about what a great dad he’d be long before I thought about having kids myself.  I’ve always counted on him to be the stablizer and fun crazy keep-it-light dad that any kids of mine desperately need.  And he is.  Happy Father’s Day Michael!


From Carnegie Hall to the Lehigh Valley

Spiffed up and ready to roll …I promised you a weekend recap, and so I shall indulge in one!  I spent the last two weeks getting more and more wound up, trying to get Fynn ready for his recital, find outfits, work out girl’s weekend details, and survive another couple of weeks of homeschooling.  If you’ve read the blog the last few weeks, the few posts that surfaced made those feelings pretty clear!  Not much sleep was had, tempers were frayed at best, and we just barely squeaked by.  After a last rehearsal on Thursday night at Fynn’s cello class, I was sure that a) he could play squeakily and off key and no one would be able to hear it thanks to the din of 178 other kids, and b) that it was going to be really really cool to see him on stage at such a fabulous concert hall. 
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I don't love you because ...

I don’t love you because …

… you still reach for my hand every time we walk out of the gate

… you held my hair back every time i puked, and never lost your patience

… you tell me i can do anything i set my mind to, and believe it with all your heart

… you buy me amazingly perfect gifts, over and over again

… you never stop prying apart my armor, making sure my heart is still beating inside

… you taught me the meaning of fierce

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Rambling out the week ...

The pile of finished pillows, positively reeking of lavendar but they’ll calm down a bit over time. It all started with Fynn getting something similar as a gift, and me having to make a replacement when it was lost, so I decided to churn out a stack of them to make a few bucks for Christmas gifts this year.Well, that was a big old blank screen for a week, sorry about that!  My pillow-making frenzy for a craft fair this weekend got in the way a bit … and of course I left it all till the last minute, had sewing machine problems that made me crazy, and it rather snowballed from there. 

My moods didn’t help either, as they’ve been all over the place.  I’m doing some therapy-ish reading and journaling, and it’s digging up some stuff that needs to come up, but makes life extra messy in the meantime.

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Nine Years

Today marks the 9th year of my marriage, and while we don’t do much in the way of celebrations, I wanted to send a shout out to my husband Michael.  I most definitely would not be even close to sane as a mom if it weren’t for him.  One of the first traits that attracted me to him (long before I started dating him) was the thought that he’d make an awesome father.  I can only say it’s been true in more ways than I imagined.  He’s patient, fun, creative, and just plain goofy as a dad, and thank God for it because I’m not enough of any of those things to parent very effectively alone.  Happy Anniversary MBV, and thanks for a most interesting 9 years, looking forward to the next few!



A fresh perspective

Walking home with my boys today after school, they were in full swing as usual.  We were on our final block and Douglas was in explanation mode, telling me all about an invention of some sort.  Fynn was just jumping out of the stroller to run ahead and ‘hide’ on the steps.  A woman walking past me got a lovely smile on her face, looked with appreciation at my boys, and then said to me, “Oh how lovely, you’ll never be alone!  That’s so nice.”  I looked up in surprise and a bit of wonder, agreed with her, and murmured something about them always having each other too.  Barring tragedy, she’s right, and I’d never thought about it that way before.  I’ll always have family.  That’s a beautiful thought, and a new perspective for me.  I got the sense that she was alone, and while not bitter about it, she was wistful.  I’m extra thankful for my family tonight!

Hang in there ...

I’m telling myself this, and hope you’ll let me slide another day.  I’ll announce a winner tomorrow, promise!  I’m currently using up half a box of kleenex a day, have two coughing boys, and can think of nothing but a comfortable pillow.  Hope your week is off to a better great start!


A rather manic monday

Hi fellow-moms,

It’s one of those days and I’m not up to doing a newsletter today, I’ll get one out sometime tomorrow.  In the meantime, I’ll extend the deadline on last week’s until tomorrow noon, so please help me out on the lunch game!

The reason it’s one of those days?  In the last 24 hours, I’ve nursed a dying cat (my pet of 15 years) and had him put down, had my younger son fall off the top bunk while wearing nothing but shorts (scraping himself badly front and back, landing on his head, and getting a huge goose egg*), forgotten soup on the stove and burned it dry, and gone into a cleaning frenzy to block my mind from the loss of my cat.  I’m taking the day off :|.

SO, if anyone has any suggestions for a new question of the week, I’d love to not have to think about it!  If you have any, please leave them in the comments below.  (You’re always welcome to post your own questions in the forum, of course). 

Thanks in advance, and I’ll catch you all tomorrow.


A not very sane mom.


PS, I can’t help but mention that between Arnica creme and Silver-sol cream, I can’t believe the extent of his healing already today.  NO goose-egg left, no brusing at all, and red but not angry-looking scratches.  Arnica is amazing for any kind of bump/bruise and the faster it gets on the more it does.  I learned it from a sitter who tripped and fell while carrying my baby(!).  Silver-sol does amazing things with burns/cuts/sunburn, etc and also works very very quickly.  You can get Arnica here (as well as many drugstores), and Silver-sol creme here.

No winner this week

Hey ladies, thanks to the four of you who answered last week’s question about What ‘time’ do you live in?  Good to know I’m not the only future-dweller :).  Still working on living in and enjoying the present.  Any tips on how to enjoy taxes?  Please share!

My spring break plans got chucked out the window this morning, so I’ll not be getting out of town after all.  Kind of knew it wasn’t going to happen this week, just praying it works out in the next couple of weeks for me to go see my grandma … one of my absolutely favorite people in this world and she’s going to be 93 in August. 

Hope your easter was good, ours ended up to be very low-key with a backyard easter egg hunt using shoe-box baskets, and a dinner out with my aunt and uncle.  So very glad for resurrection, for sun, and for the spring that is almost almost here! 

I was caught this morning while trying to catch a few extra zzzs, this boy here was busy eating chocolate eggs as fast and as quietly as he could!  Stinker :).

Great SaneMom spotlight coming up, and that newsletter to get out, so stay tuned!

Thursday's Roundup

Some things I’ve read this week that seemed timely, and maybe could help …

This is an article about natural/diet-related ways to even out your hormonesHere you go, it’s short and sweet.  I don’t know about you, but my hormones rarely feel balanced!  Lately, well, we won’t talk about lately …

The Women’s Colony (formerly the Derfwad Manor blog) is developing into something beautiful, and while I’m a tad jealous I still think you all should take a peek!  Great writing, real women perspectives, and something for just about every mom.  Start here if you’ve never visited.

For a great laugh, an infectious laugh … check this video out.  I’ve needed it several times this week just to pull me out of a pit.  It takes a couple minutes to get into it, but give it a chance!

Happy Thursday!

Happy Friday!

So very glad it’s friday, I’m looking forward to a relaxing dinner with friends, and some real conversation.  I did a rush design job last night (started to do web designs on the side to augment the slim checking acct) that went until 4am because I bit off more than I could chew.  I learned a lot though, through frantic Googling, awesome tech support, and much trial and error!  I’d forgotten how good it felt to learn something new and put it immediately to use.  Perhaps it’s just me and technology, but there was something satisfying about it, and now I’m ready to chill.   I hope I don’t fall asleep over dinner though :).  Thankfully I made a lasagne last weekend, in a fit of cooking, and have it ready to heat up. 

Hope your weekend is enjoyable, and don’t forget to toss your regrets in the bonfire before tomorrow night!  Nothing to lose but the wistful feeling :).

Food for thought ...

The Aboubakar family of Darfur province, Sudan, in front of their tent in the Breidjing Refugee Camp, in eastern Chad, with a week’s worth of food. © 2005 Peter Menzel from ‘Hungry Planet: What the World Eats’I saw excerpts from Hungry Planet: What the World Eats a couple of years ago, and was stunned.  It shows what several dozen families around the world consume in a week, and how much it costs them.  The amounts range from over $500 dollars to $1.53.  It’s eye-opening, perspective-shifting, and disturbing to me as an American.  NPR had a segment on it awhile ago with a good sampling, see it here.  It also made me realize how ubiquitous american products really are, like Coke and so on, and how it’s affected other culture’s diets.

Food is a big focus for me right now, as I’m becoming more aware of where it comes from, what’s in it, how it’s been processed, and all that kind of thing.

It's Friday and I don't know which end is up

I love Fridays.  Both boys are in school, I usually have time to run, I tend to finish up projects so I can relax more on the weekend, and it’s generally a family night with the boys.  This week I’m not feeling it. 

It’s been an up and down week, with a general current of unrest running underneath it.  I should be thankful, my husband has had 4 days of work this week, and the promise of a couple weeks at another job starting Monday!  This is great news, meaning the black finance cloud that made it’s presence known again last weekend should be moving a bit further away :)  It helps but the current is still there.

Him getting that job pretty much means I have to scrap my hopes of hitching a ride to Canada next weekend to visit friends I haven’t seen in ages, and that bites but I hadn’t let myself count on it yet.  Still hoping, but looking for a way where we can all go together.  I’m relieved in one sense, it’s simpler not to make all the arrangements, and it means I can still go to Fynn’s potluck for his class next week which I am looking forward to.

I think the itch is the one I get periodically, and it’s been a long time this time.  I get desperate for something big to change, as it puts everything else into perspective and shakes up lots of stuff that is hard to see unless it gets rocked somehow.  Know what I mean?  Rather like being forced to clean out my fridge as it’s malfunctioning, and getting to find/throw away all kind of stuff.  Maybe I just get bored easily?  Bored with jobs, with places I live, with situations that never seem to change.  I used to use big trips to get my ‘shakeup’ and it worked really well … immersion in something so Other that I saw myself more clearly, and got lots of ideas.  I can’t do that right now, though I’d LOOOOVE to. 

So last week I subscribed us to the Caretaker Gazette, and we’re looking to see what comes up.  It may be a strange way to scratch an itch, but it’s definitely a way to change things suddenly, and it could bring us a way to get out of the city and start something new.  I know there are unfinished things here in Brooklyn, and I’m starting to name them as I find them, but it does feel like the time to move on is certainly close. 

I don’t think the itch has been helped by the new year and the new administration either, in the sense that Change! and Resolve! are great ways to crank up the engine, but if you’re not sure what’s going to happen when you press the gas, it’s a little intimidating. 

I am glad it’s Friday, but wish I could see the next few steps a little more clearly.  Hope your week has been clearer!  Don’t forget to answer the question of the week before tomorrow night :).

Reminder and a question

A Reminder: Tonight’s the deadline for question of the week, don’t forget to swing on over here and leave your comment about what you are and are you happy with it … thanks to those who’ve answered already!

The Question: Are you doing anything special for the inauguration on Tuesday?  I live in Brooklyn, and I can’t tell you the excitement that’s building here! Street parties, blocks of deals and specials and giveaways, Obama-crafts at kid spaces, and more.  A lot of my neighbors and friends are going to the ceremony itself and taking their kids along.  I’d love to be there but don’t think my claustrophobia would handle it, among other things.  I’ll be watching it though :).  I’m excited for the change, glad for the hope in the air, and praying for wisdom and strength for Obama and the whole team. I can’t begin to imagine the weight of such a job myself!

Cheers and have a great weekend!


Happy 2009!

Happy New Year Sane Moms!  I know, I know, it’s the 5th, kids have started school again, and routines are back into play.  Better late than never :).  Our morning started off according to the usual schedule today.  Hit snooze.  Changed mind about getting up before the kids.  Kids REALLY slept in.  Got up anyhow, putzed around online, ran for the shower when I heard Fynn stirring, raced thru making snacks, breakfasts, and getting Douglas ready for school.  He and I ate PB and honey bread on the way there for breakfast, arriving 3 minutes after school started.   I think the only thing different than normal was my comment to a fellow parent who was walking his kid to school alongside me.  I laughed about being late again, didn’t really hurry Douglas, and slowed down to walk with his friend.  Hurrying wasn’t going to make him on time so why fuss about it?!  That’s a change for me, the fussing queen.

I’ve already had a breakdown, squabbled with my husband, skipped a run, stayed up till 5am twice, and been hard on my kids so far this year … how about you?!  I can’t blame them all on PMS either though I’d certainly like to :).  I have a newsletter to write so I’ll leave it at that for now.


Holiday Expectations

Happy weekend between Christmas and New Year’s!  Things have been all over the place here, meaning very little has gone according to plan or expectations, but we’re moving right along.  Both boys woke up several times in the night before Christmas, and so none of us slept well.  Douglas woke up Christmas morning with a huge barking cough, a fever, a super sore throat, and the desire to do nothing but lay on the couch and sleep and whimper.  Poor kid, he didn’t enjoy much of anything that day.  I stayed home from the Christmas dinner we were to all go to, at the house of one of his best friends, and we got cozy and watched The Polar Express instead.  His presents were opened sporadically throughout the day, with a couple smiles but no enthusiasm.  I confess to being pretty irritable about it, feeling a bit gypped myself.  I ended up falling asleep at 8 myself. 

Yesterday was good, and I’d arranged a few days before to spend the night w/a girlfriend whose family was out of town.

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