Memorial Day

Today is a day of remembrance and thankfulness.

Several of my friends were in the military:

Juju -Navy
Sprague - Marines
K.B. Peach - Navy
B-Ryce - Navy
Sea Bass - Marines

(One of these days I'll have to write a post on why I feel the need to give people nicknames. I'm sure it will go something like this:
SUBJECT: Why I give people nicknames?
POST: Why not? (Because I'm weird)
But I'll try to make it a little more substantial).

 Thankfully, all of the above mentioned are still with us. I've got some great memories with all of 'em.

Many thanks to the brave men and women (and their families) who have served our country and kept it safe.

                                                  The fallen...

                                        and those still standing.

We remember.


Cell Phone Sunday

I take lots of photos. Sometimes when there isn't a fancy camera at hand, I use my iPhone.
I use my iPhone camera a lot. It enables me to capture spur of the moment photo awesomeness. They may not be the best quality, but they tend to be some of the most random/hilarious/adorable/weird photos EVER.
Here's the proof:

...proof that at one point my daughters pacifier was practically the size of her face.

...proof that the rockstar sometimes wears sunglasses at night...inside.

...proof that I love cheese. All kinds. Along with a glass of wine.

...proof that I live in an amazing part of the country.

...proof that one winter we literally had to shovel our cars out of the snow.

...proof that playing is hard. P.S. That is not my house. My house is never that messy. Yea right.

...proof that my daughter likes Winnie the Pooh...and laundry baskets.

...proof that my cat sleeps in weird positions.

...proof that my dog sleeps in weird positions.

...proof that my cat also sleeps in weird PLACES.

...more proof.

...proof that sleeping is good. And, yes. My child has a TON of toys in her crib...and an extra pacifier in there too.



I'm eating candy for breakfast. Don't judge me.
I don't normally eat candy for breakfast. In fact, I'm kind of getting grossed out right now.

It all began when my kiddo woke me up at, oh, I don't remember what time it was. 1:37AM? 2:49 and 30 seconds AM? And would NOT go back to sleep. I repeat, would NOT go back to sleep. Repeat again.

This might not have been so bad if I hadn't pulled a late nighter and stayed up until midnight (yes, midnight is late for me. Hush).

So, there I am trying to console my crying toddler and I realize she's as hot as a freshly toasted pop tart (which would totally be a slightly better breakfast than candy). At that moment in the wee hours of, let's say, 2:53 and a half AM-ville, I also realize we have no Motrin. No medicine. Hello recall. Hello fever.

Then, she looks up at me, as we're sitting in our living room at 3 something-or-other in the AM playing with toys and whimpers, "Elmo..."
Elmo? At this hour? No, no. It's bedtime.
Elmo it is.

Even though she is only two years old, my kid is in love with Elmo. I have no idea how this came about. I mean, there's Sid the Science Kid, Dinosaur Train, Clifford, Word World, but Elmo is the chosen one.

So I grab our ONLY Elmo's World DVD (remind me to get at LEAST one more. Please and thank you.) and turn it on. The music starts and the crying stops. Elmo does his little song and dance, checks his email, talks to Mr. Noodle - the usual stuff - and my daughter is somewhat happy.

There are three separate episodes on this DVD and I already know them well. We learn all about BIRDS, BUGS and BIKES.

After the first round of BIRDS, BUGS and BIKES ends, I attempt to explain to my daughter that Elmo has gone to bed and she should too. The crying ensues. I put her back in bed and wait.

Now, I'd like to say that I'm a pretty good wait-the-crying-out type of gal, except when there's a fever/sickness involved. Then, I'm a sucker. I cave right in. Done.

A few minutes roll by and she gets louder.
I put her in bed with us. STILL CRYING.
I try to give her something to drink. NO DICE.
I walk around the house with her in my arms. NOT HAVING IT.
I try the ol' change-the-diaper trick. SHE'S ON TO ME.
I.....turn....Elmo back on. QUIET. MOMENTARY HAPPINESS.

Shortly thereafter, I made another attempt at putting her back to bed and knew after 10 minutes that it was hopeless.

From 3AM until 7:30AM is was:

The good thing about watching Elmo's World 47 and a half times in a row with your kid in the middle of the night is that the child might pick up a little something on the way. At some point, between the viewing hours of 3AM and 7:30AM, she learned the word WHEEL. And the crowd rejoices. Elmo does it again.

So, maybe in celebration of her learning a new word, I decided to eat candy for breakfast. Or maybe it was because I felt deliriously tired and lazy and saw the candy sitting on my counter. Or maybe it's because I'm out of Lucky Charms. That MUST be it.


Why I call him the Rockstar

...because when we first met, he was a lead singer in a rock band. I used to go to shows and stand in the front and take pictures and swoon over what a super hot rockstar he was.

...because when we got married he wore his favorite aviator sunglasses during the ceremony.

...because his mow the lawn/gardening/working on the yard shoes are old vintage Trax.

...because this is what he wears while mowing the lawn/gardening/working on the yard.

...because he has crazy shaggy hair and lets me photograph him whenever I'm in the mood to shoot...which is a lot.

...because he is an incredible father.

...because it never gets old.



10 Things

1. I like breakfast cereals. A lot. I like to walk down the cereal isle every time I go to the grocery store. Lucky Charms is my favorite cereal of all time. Sometimes I have it for breakfast....and lunch....and maybe dinner.

2. I have stage fright. I get really nervous getting in front of a large group of people. I turn red and my knees shake. I strongly disliked piano recitals when I was a kid...ughhh. When I got married and my dad walked me down the isle and everyone was starring at me - I was red faced and shaky. Bleh. You wouldn't know that about me though. I'm not shy otherwise.

3. Popcorn + Honey + Butter + Salt = Delicious. Don't be scared of it. I'll never go back to plain old buttered popcorn. Oh, and I like to pop it the old-school way.

4. Every time I see my daughter smile it fills me with joy. I have never known love like the love I have for her. Sometimes I do the stupidest dances/noises/faces/songs just to try and make her smile. I hope this continues the rest of my life.

5. I love the man called Jesus. I mean, I'm not just saying "I love Jesus!" I don't have a bumper sticker on my car or anything. I've read about him and I find him to be fascinating. During a time period when people were fighting and hating and killing, his message was the opposite and centered around love. Love your neighbor, love your family, love your children, love your enemy, love one another. I think sometimes some of Jesus' followers forget that message, preach hate and muck it all up.

6. I saved old letters the rockstar sent me when we were first dating. I like to read them every once in a while because they're so cute and cheesy.

7. I always thought I disliked reading. As I've gotten older I realized I just didn't like it in high school because they TOLD me what to read. I've read some amazing books since I discovered that about myself. Next on the list: The Princess Bride.

8. I'm really bad at remembering names. I'm also bad at remembering faces. If I've only met a person once and I see them again, I may not recognize them. OR, even if I do recognize them, I'll forget WHERE I met them. And I DEFINITELY won't remember their name. I'm working on it.

9. LOST. That dang show has been on for 6 seasons and I never watched a single episode on TV when it first started. I thought, "What's the big deal? They crashed a plane on an island. How much of a show can there be?" And then one night last year, the rockstar and I got the crazy idea to rent the first season. My life ended shortly thereafter. I got sucked in. That's all I can say.

10. I find joy in photography a.k.a. taking pictures of people, places and things. My favorite things to shoot are pregnant moms and cute couples. My goal though, is to travel to impoverished countries, help where and how I can, capture the beauty (and needs) of the people and culture via a camera and bring awareness back to the states.


So. This is me. This is us.

Alright, technically speaking, this is "five years ago" us. This is "minus a kid" us. This is "Martinis and peace signs and hand stamps and galas and big hair and night clubs and night time sunglasses" us.

This photo was taken long before baby vomit and Elmo and lawn mowing and pets and life insurance policies and sticking to a budget (still working on that one) and home cooked dinners and diapers.

These days, I sometimes put my comfy pajama pants on around 7pm. I have dance parties, but in my living room. I've forgotten how to pronounce the word GALA. The peace sign is now associated with "two more bites, please" or "Here comes Peter Cotton Tail" (the hopping down the bunny trail part). And most importantly, I've successfully mastered the art of changing my kid's diaper while she is sleeping and then leaving the room, totally undetected.

I take photos.
I write.
I read.
I laugh.
I make up songs.
I watch Word World.
I clean up kid puke.

Life is good.