Jumat, 29 Juni 2012


Beautiful Violet getting ready for school.  Silly girl ....

.... and my breakfast smoothie. You can't really tell but it is GREEN!

Kamis, 28 Juni 2012


Mmmmmm. LOVE and nakey hugs.

I've been watching too many romantic comedies lately.  My thoughts wander.  Too much time alone and in front of the tele will do that to a girl.


Frida Kahlo said, "I paint flowers so they will not die."

The gardens where I work have so many beautiful flowers blooming right now.  The most special in my opinion are the pink roses and red poppies, as far as the tended gardens go.  They beg to be picked!  But of course I deny this temptation and walk on by them... This morning after thinking about how much I wanted to have flowers in my spaces, I stopped on my way through and picked some wild flowers instead.  They are my favorite anyway, much more so than any arranged flowers from a florist.  I have often received flowers like that but always felt like they are so contrived, like they are too staged.  Wild flowers are always the way to go and they make me feel really special.

I have some in my office now AND at home on my counter.  I love them.

Desk Flowers.

And Home Flowers.

Rabu, 27 Juni 2012


Lately I have been listening to a lot of Ray Lamontagne.  He is soooo good. 

The Angry Therapist was right on when he said that Ray's music is for love makin'... oh yeahh. ;)

Kelly Clarkson does a beautiful version of Shelter too.  It definitely rivals the original.

Selasa, 26 Juni 2012



A Mommy-Violet tickle attack!


My Tuesday Wish List...

1. I was at the beach (a total given).

2. There was a station that played ONLY Black Keys all day every day. 

3. I was with my girl (also a given) and we were at said beach.

4. I was currently making enough money to be saving money for yoga teacher training.

5. That I had my own garden.

6. That my apartment didn't smell anymore - I need to do something about that soon.

7. That my love life was easy peasy instead of knock-down insane all the time.

8. That I could adopt lots and lots of kitties.

9. I felt less restless in life. 

10. That my grandmother was still here.

Senin, 25 Juni 2012


A goal for sure.


My weekend in pictures:

Saturday Violet swam at the public pool with her Daddy...

... Saturday night we read a Where's Waldo book together and she LOVED it.

Yesterday we went to the lake near our home.

And then yesterday afternoon at the park.

In this video she is telling me a story about an ant her friend at school caught.
I love how excited she is and how her eyes light-up.  She is so very beautiful.

Kamis, 21 Juni 2012


Violet and her guinea pig, Grommie (or as she calls him, Squeak-O):

And also a little movie from the park last week: Bubbles!
(Check out her sweet Chewbacca shirt!)


I want to sing like the birds sing, not worrying about who hears or what they think.  - Rumi

An update:

Violet: is great.  Today marks the first ever day of an almost perfect preschool drop-off.  She sat down on the circle rug and started building a block castle with her little friend, Nia.  She almost started to cry for me but stopped somehow.  No expectations for tomorrow or beyond but let me just say, one good day feels joyous. :)
Food: is soooo bad.  Just so so bad.  I am eating worse than I ever have I think.  Coffee and sugary treats all the time.  Fried, iced, unnatural as all get-out and sometimes just downright yucky.  What is my problem!?
Exercise: is almost nonexistent except for what movement I do at work.  Sometimes I am outside working hard so I count it as exercise.  Hey, better than nothing right now.
Apartment: is hot and smelly.  And small.  And cluttered with millions of stuffed animals.  But its mine and its Violet's.  And no one pays my rent/mortage but me. ;)
Work: my job is great.  I have my own office.  I make my own priority lists.  I supervise and plan and make important decisions.  Would I rather be home with Violet every single day instead though?  YUP.
Family: has made official camping plans for August.  My mom already paid for the site and it is happening!  I volunteered to bring food and booze too.  I am not a camper by any means, nope nope, no way.  But I do love me some Violet/sister/mom time.  And s'mores!
Recent Discovery: has to be how awesome it is to use the library.  I am a responsible library patron (zero fines people!!) and now that I no longer work at a library, I love using it as a community resource.  What a fantastic way to find children's books, videos, healthy-eating mags and music.  They have free story times and various summertime activities for families too.
Wish: that every day I were at the beach.  The older I get, the more I crave the ocean.  Plus little V-pod loves it too.
Summer Plans: are going swimmingly so far.  The best part of my days/weeks are these times I am doing something special with V.  I am always thinking and planning more things to do with my girl while the weather is warm.
Music:  lately is has been a mix of cd's and radio with as little radio as possible.  I spend so much time in the car commuting to work (remains a huge bummer and major expense) that I find my cd's become stale after a while.  Today I listened to one of my favorites of all time though: Interpol and Turn on the Bright Lights!

The best songs in my opinion are NYC and The New.  I can sing them word for word of course.  I have loved them for so many years now.  They kind of feel like an old friend at this point.

I  have been reading so many good blogs lately.  I want to share them:

1. People I want to Punch in the Throat!  Because she had me at the hilarious Elf on the Shelf post.

2. Soule Mama.  Because her farm, children and craftiness are so charming and beautiful.

3. Addicted to Veggies.  Because her recipes are SO inspiring and I WILL try them someday soon.

4. The Rants and Raves of a Monster.  Because she makes me laugh.

5. Mish's Book Shelf.  Because I love and adore my beauteous library friend, Michelle!

Senin, 18 Juni 2012


Little Violet gave my Dad her lovely sticker-coded pegasus picture for Father's Day.

My Stepmother (recently demonstrating how she can now send images via text message!) sent me a picture of it hanging on their wall in the kitchen.  She displayed it in such a manner as to allow my Dad to see it each time he sits down for a meal.  This made me smile...

Her text read: "Tell Violet that Grampy loves his present".

I had a couple weeks of preschool drop-off relief!  Violet's Daddy had her out of school for two big ones and that meant that I could go to work without that added stress.  No tears or begging or feelings of enormous guilt.  It was nice, really nice.  I did miss our routine in a certain way but not enough to want to bring her to school.  No way.

This morning was a cruel reminder of how difficult it is for me to bring her to school every day.  She cried and begged and then I cried and wished it wasn't so hard for us. 

It feels like lately, all of my actions and decisions have been based around Violet and our life together.  I don't know if this is a healthy shift or if it is getting a little out-of-control.  If I am getting to be TOO Violet-focused.  Once upon a time, I did things for me.  Or I made decisions (like my separation from Hubs) based on my own life and feelings, not solely on Violet's.  But now the tables have turned completely.  I suppose our hurried schedule and lack of time together has had a tremendous impact on this trend.  But I just wonder if I am too emotional, too caught-up in my guilt to think clearly sometimes.  OR if I am on the right track by not thinking about what I want/need and instead, doing what I think is right/best for my special girl.   

I mostly say this because quite frankly, I am REALLY REALLY upset by her reaction to school.  She hates it, she literally HATES it.  She pleads with me to keep her home.  She has never gone to school for a day without some kind of opposition and she has been going to school since February.  And yeah, we have been working with her to try and ease this transition.  It has NOT worked.  The girl just hates school, period.  And because of this, I feel zero motivation to do anything but find a way to stay home more so that she doesn't have to go through this any longer.  If she doesn't like it and she doesn't have to go (read: she only goes because Mommy wanted to see what it was like to have a grown-up job) then why keep making our lives such a downer?  I want her to feel good and happy, she is waaaay too young to have this much stress and worry in her life.  She shouldn't have to do something she hates day after day.  I want to find a better way!!

Every thing I do now is in regard to her or her schedule.  Things I once considered so important have now fallen behind.  It almost feels like I had to go and change everything, screw some things up, just to finally realize that what I had is what I needed all along.  I know that sounds kind of jumbled but I am sure I know what I mean.  I haven't made any decisions lately without the utmost concern for Violet, in fact all of my choices have been in her honor. I suppose this is great and I should really not worry so much!  I have moved into a smelly studio apartment so that she could have more stability between her Daddy's apartment and my own. I have been looking for work again closer to home. I have been seriously considering so many things and not one time have I done something to knowingly jeopardize her happiness or stability. So I feel pretty good about the Mother in me.
I need Violet and I want to get our time together back.  There has to be a way to combine everything we want, need and love: school, work and play.  I think what I am looking for is BALANCE.  I want to know where mine should naturally be.  Lord I wish I knew the answers. 

I've definitely felt good lately about all of the special time I've been spending with her and changes I have been making to create a better schedule for us.  I've hit some pretty nasty bumps in the skeptic department - people giving me a hard time or insulting me - and I find them annoying rather than earth shattering like before.  I know I take good care of my girl, the best way I know how.


My little lovebug and I crossed another item off the Summer Fun List yesterday when we visited children's theme park StoryLand.  Where Fantasy Liiiiiiives!

Needless to say it was an awesome day.

Totally psyched, waiting in line for the fish-swing ride!

Sitting in Baby Bear's chair in the house of the Three Bears.

Alice in Wonderland.

Ahhhhh! Humpty! (Creepiest ever)


Every thing she did was a photo op!  So cute.

This cute panda was at the entrance to the only ride she REFUSED to do.
Talking Tree Guy.
I bought her this little hamster - Hammy- at the gift shop. She loves him.

Swan paddle boats at the entrace to Cinderella's Castle.

Jumat, 15 Juni 2012


Nearing the end of his vacation, today Violet's Daddy took Violet and her Nana (his mum) to York's Wild Kingdom in York, Maine.  It was a perfect 75 degree day with beautiful blue skies and a light breeze.  Definitely zoo weather.

I was stuck at work.

Yep - I am pretty jealous but thankful for all of the cute pictures he shared.  Violet looks like she had a fabulous time!

Feeding the duckies!

Paddle Boats.

Camel Ride!

Happy Father's Day Weekend, M!

Friday: A Father's Day Post

Father's Day is this Sunday and I am planning to spend the day with my girl.  She is celebrating with her Daddy the day before at the beach!

I will see my Dad at some point this weekend though and at that time, will shower him with homemade gifts from Violet.  Those are the best kind of gifts anyway.

My Dad and I haven't been close in a long while now.  It is really too bad but it is what it is.  I hope that someday when he is older, more forgiving and slightly more senile, we will become pals again.  I really miss him.  He was the best Dad EVER when I was growing up.  Spoiled me rotten, let me watch scary movies at an alarmingly early age, let me eat way too much candy and let me open my gifts on Christmas Eve.  He did anything and everything to make me laugh.  He helped to shape my unique sense of humor.  He used to be one of my best friends and I love him very much.  He also gave me the best gift of my entire life!  That being my Grandmother.  She was more than just a family member, she was THE most important person to grace my life.  My Dad made sure that my relationship with her was a major part of my childhood.  For that, I am forever indebted and grateful to him.

The generations right after V-spot was hatched.

Visiting at the Nursing Home years ago.

I know a lot of kick ass Dads.  They are awesome and do an amazing job.  I wish them so much happiness this weekend and throughout.

I read something the other day on my friend's blog that made me cry, it was beautiful and sweet.  THIS is a kick-ass Dad!! I am honored to share it here: From Kala and Scott's Journey Through the Parental Unknown!

Father's Day Story!!

This guest post is by Scott Phelps, an adoptive father. It is part of A Dad’s Devotion, a month-long series of original stories related to adoption, fatherhood and Father’s Day.
It was a Wednesday afternoon in Tucson, Arizona and my wife, Kala, was up in Prescott Valley taking our son’s birthmother “A” to a doctor’s appointment.
My wife and I were very fortunate to have gotten to know “A” and develop a relationship with her. All day I had been thinking about our pending arrival and something told me I needed to leave work early.
I got home around 4:30 and called Kala to see how it was going. She informed me that she had just dropped off “A” at home and was heading south to come home. She said that the appointment went well and that Zarek should be born sometime over the upcoming weekend. That news made me so happy and excited.
I was home long enough to change clothes when Kala called me back to tell me that the birthmother called to ask if she could take her to the hospital. I needed to grab our pre-packed bags and get to Prescott Valley as soon as possible. It was a four-hour drive, so I figured that I would have plenty of time before Zarek’s birth. Boy was I wrong!
I loaded up the car and headed across town to get on the highway north. I didn’t even get halfway to the highway when my phone rang again. It was Kala telling me “He’s here!”
“What do you mean, ‘He’s here’?, I asked her.
It turns out that my wife and the birthmother didn’t make it to the hospital. Kala had to call 911 and pull off to the side of the road. She put the car in park, grabbed a blanket on the way around the car and got to the passenger’s seat just in time to deliver Zarek.
Yes, my wife delivered our son at mile marker 321. The ambulance and a fire truck showed up a few minutes later and transferred the birthmother and Zarek to the hospital where everyone checked out OK. The firemen were nice enough to open up the water valve on the truck so she could clean up before she followed the ambulance to the hospital.
In the meantime, I am driving like an escaped con to get up to Prescott Valley. A trip that normally took us four hours, I made it in three. I did cheat a little and drive in the car pool lane going through Phoenix. I just couldn’t wait to see Zarek!
I got to the hospital to find the birthmother and Kala all smiles. Zarek was asleep in the incubator. I didn’t hesitate to pick him up to hold him. My heart exploded with joy! I had become a proud father! I get to re-live that joy every day when I hold Zarek and he gives me that beautiful smile.
Looking back on how it all happened, it is still hard to believe. My wife delivered our son in the front seat of our car! How often does that happen? Simply put, it was meant to be!

Happy Father's Day to all!!

Kamis, 14 Juni 2012


Last night we crossed another event off our Summer Fun List!

The youth theater near our home hosted a rendition of Disney's Aristocats.
Violet loved it!  The kid actors were so darn cute too, such a great play and really entertaining. I think it is my favorite so far. Violet remarked that she wanted to play one of the the main characters - Marie- so maybe some day she will be interested in joining the youth theater group. That would be really cool.

These past couple of weeks she has been doing lots of fun things with her Dad while he is on vacation.

He has sent me many photos of her having fun or just hanging out.  It is great but makes me miss her even more than usual.


Her pal lil' Grommy, the Guinea Pig.

Tending to her city garden at Daddy's house.

At the park.

At a comic convention last weekend. R2D2! Her fav.

Unicorn girl!

Rabu, 13 Juni 2012


Miss Violet had her first Dentist Visit today!  She did really well and received a great report from the doctor.  I am very proud of her.

If she can stay away from the sweets - and not follow my example - then I think she has a great dental future ahead of her.  She actually asks to brush her teeth OR does it without my even having to ask first!  What a good girl!

She is so cute:


I follow blogger and therapist Jon, The Angry Therapist as many do, and I find his blog very useful sometimes.  He is helpful to me in the way that he seems to say the right thing at the right time to help snap me out of my blues.  I like his wit.  I also like the way he is constantly reminding us to forgive ourselves and be kinder to ourselves.  He believes in the process of becoming better, being the best we can be -- I believe this too. 

The little bits of important insight and positive refocusing I HUGELY appreciate and I am so happy he has a blog like this to share.  He is also pretty funny sometimes too.  And he uses profanity on a regular basis and that makes me happy in some small, naughty way.

Below I repost something I read this morning... it hits home for me big time.  I don't want to make the same mistake his father made.  I don't want to take out my feelings on those I love most and I definitely don't want to be a "dark cloud" over my own life or those of my loved ones.

A Must Have Non-Negotiable
If there was an emotional tool fairy and she told me I can go back in time and give one emotional tool to anyone I wish, I would give my dad the ability to have a good attitude, exude positive energy. When I was growing up and things were shitty, when we were in debt and the family business was not doing well, my dad never kept his chin up, smiled, and remind us that going through this will only make us stronger and that he was proud of us. Instead, he would worry, panic, and put his insecurities and self doubt on us. He would act like the sky was falling and run around sucking all the energy out of us. He would act like a child. He would make it about him. He would react instead of respond, completely unaware of the damage he was causing his family.

Today, I wonder what I would be like if my dad possessed that tool, knew the value in it, and passed it on to me, if he modeled resilience and positivity. I don’t think I would have been so angry in my 20’s. I think I would have been in healthier relationships. I think I would have been more successful. I think I would have been happier.

Okay, enough of the what ifs. The question is what now? The answer is this is now a non-negotiable for me. No matter how bad things get, I choose to have a good attitude, practice gratitude, and appreciate everything I have. I accept and deal with, knowing that it will make me stronger instead of whine, pout, and bring others down with me. But I struggle with this. It’s not easy. It’s ingrained. No one taught me what changing your attitude / energy looks like. Therefore, I do slip at times.

The last few weeks have been that way. But I will not drown in self pity as my father did and I will not put my stress, anxiety, and unhappiness on others. Finally, and this is the part of the non-negotiable that most have difficulty with, I will not surround myself with people that do not possess this tool.

Energy is everything. It really is. And it starts with a choice. How many people do you know that walk with a black cloud over their heads and when you spend time with them, you end up leaving completely exhausted? If you surround yourself with people like that, what do you think your life will look like? What if you were living with someone like that? Maybe you are.

How many people do you know that leave you feeling light, invigorated, and invincible? People that can go into a room and lift it. Seek those people, in your friendships but especially intimate relationships. When shit hits the fan in your life, and you know that it will, a nice ass, beautiful smile, or money will not fix it. Don’t compromise positive energy. It’s gold.
- Angry


For my birthday, I asked for many things: apartment items (blender and crockpot thanks to H+S), cash (thanks Mom!!), items to house my Owen kitty (thanks K!) and craft/activity projects to do with Violet.

My lil' sister K provided me with this cool sticker craft that Miss Violet adores.   She runs to it each time she comes over.  I find it really fun too and relaxing actually.  You must match a little, colored sticker square by number to a picture pattern.  It sounds almost tedious but it is actually a great way to focus and kind of relax at the same time.  K wisely chose a unicorn/flying horse kit too - perfect for Violet!

Here we are last night crafting before bed time.

She is making one of these for my Dad for Father's Day.

And this is what the kit looks like! Thank you K!!

Selasa, 12 Juni 2012


Little J and Little V-bug!

My baby sister is having a baby.

My heart is bursting with love for HIM!  She is having a boy! And boy oh boy, does our family need more of 'em.  I am so excited!  I had this post all ready to submit for hours and I literally just found out the sex from my sister minutes ago.... here she is in all her cuteness:

I can't wait to tell Violet...


Grapes, Apples and CHEESE!
My breakfast today was on the run.  I picked it up at Walmart on the way to work.  The vastness of that store always amazes me.  I have nothing against Walmart in general, no politics or prejudice of any kind and I needed food asap, so I stopped at the most convenient place I could imagine.  I found this little packaged fruit + cheese snack thing and I bought it feeling like I made the best food decision I have made in a while.  The health perfectionist in me, the voice that always gives me a hard time when I am eating poorly said.. This prepackaged meal has a shitload of preservatives and CHEESE in it so really, you're not eating all that great, Missy...   But I can't always fight the voice, moreover, I need to change it or change my lazy ways.  I don't see compromise in my diet.  For me it is all or nothing - this is me, it is how I think and operate, it is what I want for myself.  Good health at 100%.

And this breakfast was "decent" for me.  As in, better than most of the junk I have been feeding my body.  I have put little thought into any of the things that I eat, sometimes just eating because it looks yummy, not because I am hungry at all.  Fast food has entered my diet and that is pretty much the bottom of the barrel for me.  I *know* deep in my soul how disgusting food like that is and all of the horrors behind the industry.  I have read information about how that food is made - the chemicals - the sludge - and seen the videos of factory farming and animal abuse.  It breaks my heart and makes me feel sick.  I *know* about it now, I am informed (dare I say "enlightened") and with that information, eating so thoughtlessly is real bad. 

I already feel a little better getting this off my chest!  The fact that I have been so lazy as to let the things that matter so much, fall to the wayside because I can't be bothered to see beyond my own daily "problems" is really a pity.  Someone recently said that I have been living "insanely" in reference to my personal life (and life with Violet) but I don't agree.  Yeah for the purpose of self preservation I leave some big details out of this forum.  Generally though, I think I have made a bunch of stress for myself and not been taking care of my health.  That tends to happen sometimes, even to the coolest ladies.  What may seem insane to one (this person being someone who is afraid to really live and take giant, super wild chances!) is just what normal life is like to another.

I have made major, major changes in my life this year.  I changed jobs! Changed living spaces - more than once!  Changed relationships, some good, some bad.  Changed my life around in so many ways!!  This is life for me.  And yeah, it has not been a smooth ride.  I can't keep my diet right, I can't get on my yoga mat like I want to and I change my mind about people and things pretty often.  I get so very, very sad sometimes that I don't know what to do and I make a ton of mistakes.  BUT I do know that I want to spend my time with my daughter and I want to like what I do for work.  I want to take care of myself and maybe I don't know if I am ready to handle all the hearts that want me or if I can accept that some people hate me.  I am trying my hardest to make it all work and I am pretty honest when I say that sometimes I don't have a clue what I am doing.  I felt for so long like I was sleeping, like life was just happening to me instead of me really living... but now I know that I am awake, WIDE awake.   

So what I really want to say today is that I know in my heart that my diet and movement have everything to do with who I am and how I feel about myself.  Eating well and moving my body make me feel alive and when I feel like that, I feel GOOD.  Good about Violet, good about love, good about work, good about my choices... just damn good. 

Tuesday: A Repost

I read this at one of the cool blogs that I follow and it made me laugh.

And I couldn't agree more...

Things that need to fade out of popularity
Alright. That's it. I'm going to start a list of things that are so overdone, I don't want to think about them anymore. They need to go away. It's possible that they just need to be enjoyed quietly, but mostly, they need to go away.

1. Moustaches. Fake ones. They've been everywhere for a couple of years and it's time for them to be retired as a trend. If you haven't noticed this, you have your head buried in the sand. Sure they were quirky at first. They stop being quirky when you see them at Wal Mart. And yes, I made moustaches on sticks and put them in my family's stockings year before last. THE YEAR BEFORE LAST. I'm so tired of them, I don't even want to moustachio the town anymore. And that is really sad.

2. "Keep Calm and ..." fuck you, I don't want to keep calm. If you google this, you will discover that you should keep calm and just about everything. Once again, quirky at first, nostalgic and all, but get over it already.

3. Bacon. This is on my list of things that should be enjoyed quietly. And, actually, it's the thing that inspired this list. Because I happened across a listing for bacon flavored lip balm. I have now seen Bacon flavored: lip balm, beer, vodka, soap. Things are shaped like bacon, scented like bacon. 10 years ago, it was amusing when I recieved a catalog that sold bacon band-aides. And Shower curtains. Once again, quirky then. Don't get me wrong. I love bacon. I eat it semi frequently. I would eat it ALL THE TIME if I wasn't just a little bit health concious. Suddenly, we seem to want bacon everywhere. We want to eat it, drink it, and smell like it? I have a problem with that.

4. Hello Kitty. This one doesn't stick in my craw like the others, but she's everywhere. In your house, on your toast. it's ok if you're 10 (says the girl with a Mr Potato Head collection) but if you're sticking Miss White everywhere and you're in your thirties, you might need counseling.

To be continued...

Senin, 11 Juni 2012


Violet is on vacation with her Daddy this week and he has been gracious enough to send me pictures of their adventures.  I won't say that I am not jealous of all the fun they have been having when I've been at work -- but I am really happy that they are having such a great time together.

Today they went to Canobie Lake Park! 

I plan to bring her myself some weekend soon so I can enjoy it with her too.  I won't go on all the rides that her Daddy did though -- but I will try my best to stomach as many rides as possible.

SO much cuteness.

Violet and her old man :)

Cotton Candy!

Ferris Wheel! (or perhaps, Sky Ride?)