Momcation

I have been sick for the last 10 days or so with the typical winter crud that has me vowing to move to the desert every year around February. How I have managed to contract this while everyone else in my house remains healthy is complete mystery. Especially since one of my kids a school age and the other one still spends a lot of time putting random everyday objects in his mouth.

But I don’t have time to feel sorry for myself because I am packing my bags and my car and getting ready for a work trip to Fargo.

Now, you might think I would dread this trip but I will tell you a secret: I am not. Not one bit. In fact, I am looking forward to it. While I have a hefty schedule during the day my evenings will be blessedly free. And during those hours I am going to pretend like I am on a Momcation. No kids. No cooking. No cleaning up. No driving anywhere to and fro. Instead I am going to bring a long a good book (or two) and my coziest flannel pajamas and some lotions and potions for pampering.

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Talking about the important things

I am very sad about the local Planned Parenthood office in my neighborhood relocating. But maybe not for the reasons most people would expect.

Sassy Lassy used to take dance at the community center across the street. Every Saturday morning,  rain or shine, the anti-choice protestors would be out en masse. She was 4 the first time she asked about them:

“Can we go to that parade after dance class?”

“No.”

“But Mom… It looks like fun. Why not?”

And there I was smack in the middle of a how to explain a complex issue to a 4-year-old. Talk about thinking on your feet.

“You know how Dad and I always tell you that you are the boss of your body? Well, those people don’t believe that you should be the boss of your body.”

“Okay. We don’t want to go then.”

And off she skipped into dance class.

About a year later the protesters had upped the ante. On a bright and beautiful winter morning they had huge posters and trucks with graphic images of a fetus on them. I was about 7 months pregnant. Sassy Lassy came out of the community center and stopped short:

“What does being the boss of your body have to do with babies?”

Gulp.

“Well, part of being the boss of your body means that you have choices about IF and WHEN you want to have babies. The Doctor can give a woman medicine to make sure her body doesn’t have babies until it is the right time. The people who don’t believe you are the boss of your body don’t believe you should have a choice about that.”

And so that is why I will miss having Planned Parenthood in my neighborhood; it gave me the opportunity to discuss what I feel is an important subject in an easy and comfortable way with my daughter. I never would have dreamed that we’d be having that discussion when she was 4 and 5 years old. But I am so glad that we did. It’s a start of a very important discussion.

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Mr. Mister’s Wacky Wednesday

In honor of it being Mr. Mister’s Golden Birthday we’ll be feasting on all golden (ie. yellow) foods tonight:

Homemade Mac-N-Cheese

Golden Corn Niblets

Pineapple

Lemonade

Cupcakes

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Mr. Mister’s Golden Birthday

Today is Mr. Mister’s Golden Birthday.

As I think back to Mr. Mister’s actual birth day it is somewhat remarkable in how just unremarkable it was. But the fact that I had him at all was what IS remarkable.

After having a miscarriage JJ and I were told  it was “unlikely” that I would have another child due to a combination of factors. It was blow and I spent some time grieving but I’d really gotten to a place where I accepted that we’d go on as a family of 3. Sassy Lassy had finally stopped asking for a sibling. I’d given all of my baby stuff away. Heck, my first thought after having sex on the morning we’d conceived was “Wow. That’s what sex is going to be like now that we are not trying to make a baby.”

And then a month later  I found out I was pregnant.

I was delighted and terrified the minute I saw that little plus sign! I was afraid to be excited in case it resulted in another miscarriage and so I remained a little detached in the beginning.  And then I was impatient. All those months of waiting to meet the little person who would be joining our family? It was an eternity.

But on the morning of February 2nd had finally arrived. JJ and I drove Sassy Lassy to pre-school and then up the River Road along the Mississippi River  to the hospital. Just like many other commuters on that day we had an important meeting to get to that day; our scheduled c-section.

Everything went as planned. JJ came in to the operating room with me. And we both got to hear Mr. Mister’s lusty cries the minute he was lifted out of my belly. He was born with a whole head of black hair, a pink bow for a mouth and a very wise smile.

I’d never wanted to have a baby in the winter. My brother was born in January and my mom suffered from ppd. Yet, Mr. Mister arrived when he was spposed to. And he has brought a warmth and a presence that would melt anyone’s heart.

This year has been a year of such big changes! Mr. Mister became mobile and is talking up a storm. And he feels like a real part of the family. 

He has never been a child who asks “what” or “why” or “where” and yet he delights in giving us detailed explanations and in figuring things out. He loves helping. He loves fixing. He loves telling us stories. And his ability to hold up his end of a conversation is delightful.

We read books and books and more books. He loves all things mechanical or transportation related. And he is definitely a “watch before you leap” kind of a kid. And his big eyes with the long lashes have most definitely settled into a beautiful shade of brown just like his dad’s. 

I am sure that strength and determination are bound to be recurring themes in this next year and as frustrating as that can be sometimes I do love it that he doesn’t let his big sister rule the roost.

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Wacky Wednesday

It’s Wacky Wednesday at our house.

WW is our attempt at changing up the dinner routine at our house and doing something a little silly.

Tonight’s theme: GREEN.

Everywhere you look outside you see snow. It’s the second week of January and we’re already approaching our average yearly snowfal totals. Spring seems very far away. Our green food will remind us of it.

On the menu: Pasta w/ pesto, Green Beans, Pickles & Green Olives and Green Jello.

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My Birthday Present

I just bought myself a birthday present. Well, kind of. My birthday isn’t until July so I won’t get to use it until then.

I just registered Sassy Lassy for “Horsing Around with Mom or Dad” Girl Scout camp.

It is not everyday that you get to actually attend camp with your kid. I am ridiculously excited. And kind of hoping that I will not feel every one of my 42 years as we ride along.

I love to give my kids “experiences” as gifts. And how fun that I am giving us both one.

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The First One

So, here goes.

I am not really sure how one begins a blog. But here I am.

I’m 41 and I live in Minnesota. I live in my fourth (and I hope final) fixer upper in an urban neighborhood nestled along the Mississippi River. I work a full-time job that most of the time I enjoy.  I suppose I could list some hobbies here but really those have kind of fallen by wayside the past few years. That’s okay. I’m sure I’ll pick them up again when my kids are a little older.

I am married to JJ. We live with Lucy – an aging Golden Retriever/Mix and our two children.  

Sassy Lassy is 6.5 going on 13. She is in first grade and is a ball of energy and ideas. She wakes up every morning asking “what are we going to do today?” within minutes of opening her eyes and she doesn’t even drink coffee yet.

Mr. Mister is not-quite two and is busy asking about everything he encounters and sharing his ability to string words together and actually make sentances. And repeating himself.  He’s obsessed with all things transportation and can tell knock-knock jokes that HE thinks are hilarious. Did I mention he also likes to repeat himself?

I’ve written stuff that other people have read before. In fact, I once made a living doing it. Yes, I was a writer for a daily newspaper. A cub reporter, as my Dad used to call me.

There was a lot I enjoyed about that. But I always felt like I wanted to write about something more than just the news of the day. It’s taken me nearly 20 years to figure out what that “something” might be. People tell you to write about things you know; that you are passionate about. Parenting my two kids definitely falls into that category. Big deal. Right? There are lots of mommybloggers already out there. Is my life that much more interesting or are my kids any more amazing/cute/funny/talented than anyone elses? Well, perhaps I think so … but probably not.  

Ironically, it is the experience of not raising a child that is one of the biggest motivators on my parenting. I’ve found that the whole “give the baby up for adoption and get on with your life”  guidance I was given as a pregnant teenager really only works up to a certain point. 

Whilygigs is where it all spins together.

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