Moment of Zen

A little under a year ago for my birthday, Christine's mom gave me an orchid. It stayed in bloom for such a long time that I got asked often by my office mates if it was fake. But no! It was real and it was beautiful. After a few months, the flowers all dropped and I thought there was no way this beautiful plant would bloom again. I had heard what a difficult plant an orchid could be and I know nothing of flowers in general or fertilizing. I ended up leaving it alone and not watering it very often. I just let it do its own thing and here we are, not only with a flower appearing but I think I count six healthy buds. 

This could be the key to life, right? Not to get all deep and mystical but maybe the best thing we can do sometimes is just to let it be. There are so many details and parts of our existence so far out of our control - so much to stress over and about - perhaps it's not too bad to be out of control, to let the cards fall as they may and to allow life wow you, even if it takes some time to do so.


The One About Poop

So after a week of both kids having an alarming amount of diarrhea, I decided it was time to take them to the doctor yesterday. Both of them had been eating and drinking and sleeping. Neither of them seemed dehydrated nor did they have fevers. Just so much poop. And Casey booted one time but Casey always boots so I just don't even consider that any more. So we headed to a doctor's office in Ventura where I'd never been and trying to find it made me a stress case because the girl would not stop whining and the boy had too many questions. We finally get there and Christa is in all the things and Casey is dropping a metal lunch box full of hard toys over and over. And eventually Casey is pushing Christa over and making her cry and I'm the mom with kids causing a scene. And the phone is ringing in my purse. And there are co-pays to be paid and new patient paperwork to be filled out and I'm a hot mess.
Also a hot mess? The mom in the waiting room with kids the same age as my kids and a baby that pooped which made her realize she didn't have diapers or wipies and was also kind of freaking out. So I gave her my diapers and wipies and I felt like this is how motherhood should be. It takes a village and what not.
So the Fridays finally get into the exam room and Casey's doing stunts and Christa is pissed to be naked in a room with the a/c blowing and I realize I have to pee more than I have ever had to pee before in my life. So I schlep the kids into the big bathroom with me and while I pee I have to wrangle the children and keep them from touching anything. Mission accomplished and we're back in the exam room and I ask Casey to shut the door behind us and he slams it so hard that the walls rattle. Fantastic.
Casey does great with the exam until he decides he is going to dismount off the table like a damn gymnast and falls flat on his back. Awesome. Christa sees the nurse PUT ON A GLOVE nowhere near her and freaks the heck out and starts crying real tears. Unbelievable. Good news? The kids are fine and seem to be totally on their way out of this which is kind of what I figured but better safe than sorry and all that. Apparently up to fourteen days of diarrhea is totally normal in children even though that to me sounds like an absolute nightmare. Despite the shit show in the doctor's office, the nurse confirms I am doing everything right and I take that validation and wear it like a medal as we hold our heads high while exiting the building. 
On the way home I'm talking to Casey and we're having a conversation while Christa sleeps and then I ask what he'd like for dinner. No answer. So I look over my shoulder and this is happening:

The child slept all the way home. I carried him in the house sleeping. He slept on the couch for almost two hours despite me trying to yell and shake him awake. Amazing. Both kids get doses of aspirin during bath before bedtime. Christa wakes up this morning and makes a solid poop. Casey's back at school and seems to be staying there despite being sent home twice last week for having poop accidents. I think things are looking up.


Scattered Weekend Pics

 I had chosen an "Old McDonald" theme for Christa's birthday because my mother insists on themes to order cakes around. Barnyard decorations? Yeah there are none. So I abused my work privileges and made this "banner" on our colored printer during office hours. Thanks QPS!
 Then I went all Pinterest and used the old jam jars I've been obsessively hoarding for no reason and filled them with tiny bubbles and kisses and M&Ms for the kids' thank you take-aways. Naturally I thought I was very clever until my mother felt the one-upper in her come out and tell me that I should have fastened fabric around the top. Shut up. Ha!
 There was a bug trapped in the window. Christa was fascinated.
BFF snapped this shot of me and the birthday girl and it's really nice and I was really happy. Sure, I threw together a great party but my proudest moment - aside from being this girl's mommy - was making guacamole for the first time - and a shit ton of it - and there was nary a bite left at the end of the party. Success!
 After the super awesome party full of super fantastic friends and super delicious food wrapped up, we had a wee fire outside so the dads could smoke cigars. When the keg was floating we played Cards Against Humanity and stayed up late with sleepover guests and had some laughs. Maybe "real" pictures will come tomorrow from the party. I don't know. I have fatigue.
Speaking of fatigue, Sunday was total pajama day. We tidied up and lazed about and napped and all was well in the world. The kiddos both have had jacked up tummies all week so God-willing everyone will be on the mend and healthy and relaxed now that all the festivities are done for a while.


Knicknack Haiku Friday

Capood or Loody***
Are both names I've called my boy
Since he was quite wee
Christa's Osh or Bem
From sounds she's made, but mostly
Tutti Frutti Boots***
My poor, sweet children
I think Casey's not a fan
I can't stop myself

***Capood stemmed from Casey being naked and me calling him a Nude Capood. Why? I don't know. Loody is how he used to pronounce Woody of Toy Story fame. As for the girl, "Tutti" was born of my niece exclaiming the word "tutu" when she saw Christa wearing one once. She is also Toots, Tootsy Boots, Bootsy, Tutti Bem... Yeah. I don't know that they'll know their names despite how rad the names Casey Douglas and Christa Allyn really are.


And we're done!

When this whole renovation project started on January 2nd, my only request was that it be finished by the time Christa's birthday rolled around. Here we are, a couple days before her party, and we are done just in time to show it off to all our guests. I need to find a picture to hang in the corner near the sink but otherwise this is the final product. It's fancier than fancy and my mom gets all the credit for that. Husband and I are far too frugal for such extravagance but it sure is nice to enjoy.


Christa is One

Happy birthday to you (tutti boots)
 Happy birthday to you (tutti boots)
 Happy birthday, Dear Christa
Happy birthday to you (tutti boots)

One Year Doctor Visit Update:
20 lbs 6 oz
4 shots
Also she has a tummy bug. Poor beeps.


Christa Tuesday - 52 Weeks

This is the end, you guys. No more Christa Tuesdays. Tomorrow, on Ash Wednesday, she will be one. This is the very last day of her first year and she's just a bundle of joy. My darling little baby face is a big girl now. You see her there with her car keys, getting ready to go out on a date. Sigh, she may as well be. Her favorite show is Super Why! She loves stealing her brother's drink and drinking out of the superhero heads or the straws. She walks around like it's no big deal. She makes tons of sounds like mama and dada and Casey and I swear she said dog as clear as a bell the other day. She eats what she wants and absolutely doesn't eat what she doesn't. She's a great sleeper and a heck of a hugger. She has sharp little teeth and a sweet little smile. She's hell bent on being and doing everything she wants, not one of us can stop her. A little terrorist tornado that has brought so much joy to our lives it is practically indescribable. There's so much I want to say about this little love to really let you guys know how dope she is but I can't. She's just the best. We're lucky to have little Christa Allyn in our lives.


Haiku the 13th Friday

Friday the 13th
I sure like when that happens
I'm not sure why though
And then Valentine's
Casey's party is today
Passing store bought cards
Pinterest I am not 
Don't think the littles care much
I made Krispie Treats



Throwback Thursday to a year ago today, when my Christa Tutti Frutti Boots was straight chilling inside me. Hahaha. Casey and I were talking the other day about how he was in my tummy and he said, "Yeah! MY BONES WERE IN THERE!" And I was all, "Ew!" but it's true! And look at her now. Just shy of being a year old. I know we already had Christa Tuesday but whatever, you guys. I'm sentimental.


Finished Room!

You guys! We have a completed project! This room used to be an absolute junk room. Where the pretty picture hangs, next to the window, there used to be two shelves and an actual wet bar taking up a lot of unnecessary space, filled with sports memorabilia and junk. Just a hot mess. We had all our books and DVDs and CDs and tchotchkes on those shelves with a bed crammed right in the middle of it all. It really was a waste of a room. Now? We have a legit play room for the kids that can double as a guest room on the rare occasion we have guests sleep over. All the toys are now out of our living room to make room for a grown-up workspace at some point. Plus we have the Wii hooked up in there so the kiddos can watch Netflix and we don't have to be a part of constant children's programming and they don't need to be on my bed messing up my room. Everyone wins!

MORAL OF THAT STORY: We took it from mess to best! No one wants to have their house remodeled because of asbestos but it turns out there was a silver lining hiding under all that destruction after all.


Christa Tuesday - 51 Weeks

Here is little miss fancy pants using a spoon like a smarty. She was mostly putting the berries on there and catapulting them but whatever. She thinks she's great. This is the LAST WEEK of Christa's eleventh month. In 8 days she will be one. My little baby grew up in the blink of an eye. It really is true about time flying.
She is so loud, you guys. She just hollers and whoops it up all the time, wreaking havoc on the land. Now that she is full on walking she thinks it's just better to try and run everywhere. She's always on the move. We lose her constantly in the house. The other day she sneaked past me and almost got stepped on by the plumber. Fantastic. Nothing like not being able to control or keep an eye on your own baby.
We switched out the little baby carrier car seat because her hefty ass was getting too heavy to carry that way so she's still facing backwards in the car but now has a legit car seat. She's such a big girl. At Maria's house she likes to pick up rocks and stack them on the little solar lights she has in the front yard. She wants every toy her brother touches and her brother hates it... so begins the sibling rivalry. The other day she was eating ground cover and Husband told her "no" and she coyly threw a smile over her shoulder and he imploded and I can just see into the future when she does that kind of shit for his wallet or the car keys.
I have never loved a handful as much as I love this little lady (well maybe her brother but shhhh).


Haiku Friday

Bob Marley's birthday
Surprised you didn't know that
Thanks, desk calendar
Bathroom's almost done
Glass shower door measurements
Happening today
Tomorrow? Plumbing
Toilet, faucets, vanity
Put a fork in it!



With all the house repairs, Casey's teeth, tax appointments and ALLTHETHINGS plus my lady time arriving, I have found myself becoming extremely stressed and anxious several times this week. At one point the other night I literally got in my car and drove away from Husband and the children and just kind of screamed in the car in the parking lot of Vons so I wouldn't lose my shit in front of them. Not my finest moment but whatever. This morning I felt another anxiety attack coming on because we were running late and Christa is always in everything and Casey is the biggest feet-dragger in the morning and AAAAAAAAAAAAAH! So my chest started tightening up a bit on the drive to Maria's and my dad decided he'd show up in the form of a song on the radio. Our song that we danced to at my wedding was Stevie Wonder's "Isn't She Lovely" and I hardly ever hear it play on the radio unless I'm in a bad state. I'm taking it as a sign he is letting me know it will be okay. The other day I was telling someone that if he was alive, I'd like to think some of this drama would be alleviated. 

Isn't she lovely
Isn't she wonderful
Isn't she precious
Less than one minute old
I never thought through love we'd be
Making one as lovely as she
But isn't she lovely made from love

Isn't she pretty
Truly the angel's best
Boy, I'm so happy
We have been heaven blessed
I can't believe what God has done
Through us he's given life to one
But isn't she lovely made from love

Isn't she lovely
Life and love are the same
Life is Aisha
The meaning of her name
Londie, it could have not been done
Without you who conceived the one
That's so very lovely made from love 

When the song ended I felt a lightness in my chest as the tears streamed down my face and stained my shirt, make-up ruined before I even got to work. So, I said to Casey, "I miss papa" and he said he did too. And we held hands. And I felt better. Sometimes I don't know how bad I'm hurting, grieving, missing my dad until the dam breaks.


Christa Tuesday - 50 Weeks

Boy is it weird to know there are only two Christa Tuesdays left! This is the second week of her 11th month. She sure grew up in a hurry. I took this picture of her last night in our kitchen, post-bath but pre-bottle. Look at her standing there. I love her so much. Last week she was doing a few steps here and there and plopping on that puffy, diapered booty and resorting to crawling because it was faster than walking. This past weekend, she decided walking was IT and running was better! She's hustles down the hallway and jams from place to place making it hard to keep track of her.
We went to BFF's house on Sunday and I would like to think we are getting her ready by showing her just how much baby-proofing will need to be done. Every time we turned around, Christa was eating a remote control or tearing apart magazines or hitting the cable box and changing the channel during the very important game. Or she was finding pieces of rocks and grass to shove in her mouth. My tiny, adorable tornado. Other than walking and a new tooth shooting through her gums on the bottom row of teeth, not too much advancement was made. She just keeps growing and being adorable and keeping mama on her toes.



You have to see them twice. I'm blatantly stealing BFF's Weekend Pics.

Because this is the sad excuse for pictures I took this lovely Super Bowl Sunday:

 We'll try harder next weekend. This past one was action packed and super funzies.