Tuesday, May 31, 2011

A hug

God I love this cat.  There was a time, years ago, when this cat was the only thing I looked forward to during my days.  He is truly one of a kind.  And, he's crazy.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

The days are numbered...

Summer is around the corner and lately the days feel short and the nights feel long.  There's been talk in our house (just talk) of adding to Team Dub, and with all the chatter and planning and thinking, I can't help but look at my little Tootie a little differently.  I still don't feel ready for her to be one of two.  I don't know if I ever will.  I look at her now, this big beautiful girl, this child who made me a mother, and I see the days blow by me like a storm and I can barely wrap my mind around how much she is becoming her own person.  She is her own person. 

When Vivienne was born it was almost like she was still an extension of one of my organs.  Giving birth to her was the most incredible experience (and I will share my birth story soon).  I feel the need for it to be written down, documented.  How she came into the world so calmly, after so many hours of labor.  The nurses all kept telling me how much they loved this baby because even though I began to get a fever and show signs of strain, and the hours wore on and on with no change, her heart beat remained exactly the same the entire time.  Not one dip on the machine.  It was so calming to watch that beep, beep, beep.  She never gave any reason for worry, a rarity the nurses all told me.  When she arrived on my tummy all fresh and warm, she just looked up at me kind of gurgling/checking things out.  Barely crying. 

A few hours before she was born I was tired and emotionally spent and crying (we had a long 24 hour natural labor, and then an epidural and pitocin in the last 4 hours).  My mother-in-law came in to see me and I told her I never want to do this again, ok?  I don't remember saying this, but Mitch heard me as well, and they both told me that I don't ever have to do it again if I don't want to, that I just need to get through this one night, this one baby, this one birth.  That I can do it.  That I can do anything.  And I did it.  I pushed her out in less than an hour, and she was perfect and barely slimy, and had giant wide open eyes, and the endorphins were so intense I wanted to stand up and scream at the top of my lungs I DID IT!

And here we are thinking of doing it again, whatever that experience will be or mean.  And even though it's still just a thought, the days feel numbered for Vivi and I and our solo adventures. 

My goodness, how time flies.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Circles and letters

Here is a clip or two of Vivi and I doing the cheapest thing ever -- drawing with crayons and playing with stickers.  There's a huge store in San Francisco called SCRAP, and it is a sort of project based - reusable materials store.  Anyway.  There are apparently a TON of stickers there and Viv and I are going tomorrow to check it out.  It is supposedly very nice on the pocketbook and has millions of stickers.  Literally!  I'm excited. 

Vivi is "learning" her letters.  I am truly not a momma that believes in pushing a toddler to learn a bunch of "stuff" they are going to learn eventually anyhow.  It all started when I got Vivi an alphabet set for the bathtub and Mitch began going over the first letters of family members (Nono, Grandma, Auntie, Momma, etc).  She took to it immediately and has been pointing these letters out to us wherever she sees them.  It's incredible.  She is a sponge right now, and can identify 12 letters on her own.  This kid seems to have the memory of an elephant -- it takes her ONE showing to learn a letter.  Nuts.

Okay, that's enough chattiness about my daughters memory skill with letters!  She loves learning, she truly does.  She has so much fun when she can do something that Momma and Dada can do.  She is my little adult.  I love her to pieces and we are just inseparable little buddies lately.

I'll be back with a review of SCRAP.  Let's hope it's packed full of stickers for 99 cents.  That's the rumor!


Monday, May 23, 2011


It's been a little quiet around Team Dub the last few weeks, and my only excuse for it is that I just simply haven't felt the blogging itch.  Quite the opposite actually, I've been plagued with the nagging feeling that anything I put up here is just nonsense -- and who wants to bother with reading about other people and their day to day life?  Who?  (The answer, my friends, is me). 

Whenever I feel like this I have to stop and remember that I am not just a person who blogs, I am also a person who reads, follows, and appreciates them as well.  It's an interesting way to connect to people "these days" but connection it is nonetheless.  So all of this to say that while I have been quiet on the outside, I have been going BANANAS on the inside!  It's been business as usual here and then some.  I'm working on a bunch of features and things for the site (for all 10 of you who follow.  kidding... :).  Soon I will be moving the Team over to TypePad - it's nearly ready and hopefully it will be a better set up for some of the things I've been itching to do.  I really want to do more writing, so hopefully you'll see more of that come your way (whether you like it or not ;).  I am in the beginning phase of running and organizing the misters business (read: secretary with benefits) so you may hear more about that on here.  He has been a busy little bee!  We've also been traveling at least every other weekend this month and we're trying hard to finish up loose ends here at home.  So it's been packed full and feels like it.  We've managed to keep up a healthy garden though which has been very rewarding!  Oh, I have pictures to share (of course)!

*Spoiler alert: don't look to me for any DIY type of things (not that I don't ever read or look at them myself), it's just they've been done, and I'm just not that kind of gal).  No disrespect to any DIYers, I've got all the love in the world for you, honest.  I'm just hiding the fact that I'm really not that talented.*  Tangents are more my thing...anyway, back to subject!

I'm gonna try to post more than once per week starting now, and I have a lot of things I wished I had gotten up here earlier.  Our trip to Ojai being one of them!  I'm also pretty excited to share Vivi's revamped bedroom and the rest of our little projects at home (did I say projects? gasp!).  I promise, no tutorials.  Just pictures.  Meanwhile, here are a few videos.  Vivienne saying my favorite word, and lying in the dirt.

See you soon, peace out.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

What a better week

Someone got their nails painted for the first time, and then Mommy took it off the very next day because it just didn't sit well with me.  She looked like a preteen with a month old manicure.  I have no idea what I was thinking.  Oh yeah, it was probably that cute little face begging me for her nails to look like Momma's!

Also, when Mitch gets home from a trip she loves to put on all the stuff from inside his bag.  This time it was underwear and shoes.  Nice.

I can't get enough of my little Pookie this week.  All of it!  Her smell, her little face when she "drives" on my lap, her snarky little eyebrow glare, even her tantrums.  I'll take it!


Sunday, May 15, 2011


To everyone who wrote in or contacted me personally or on Facebook, about how awful their days, weeks, months can be too.  I really did feel much better the second I hit "Post".  I find such camaraderie on the Internet these days.  In a world where we are all way too busy, and put way too much pressure on ourselves to be perfect, it's nice to connect, even if it's through the impersonal vice of a computer.

So thanks, everyone.  My day is looking up.  Mitch is home and took Vivi for the next few hours AND I slept in.  I'm currently at a coffee shop on my computer which is total bliss.  Seriously.  I feel like a kid at Disneyland for the first time.  First up will be browsing around for more inspiration for my next tattoo, then maybe some blogging, then maybe read the book I brought (Nurture Shock), and then who know...the possibilities are endless!

Hope everyone is also having a nice Sunday, and those who are not, your day is coming!


Friday, May 13, 2011

Today sucked

I've been sitting here for an hour now trying to find a positive spin on my day, and just now realized that I don't have one, and it's my blog, and why the hell not just say what I feel like saying.  So here goes.  If you don't want to listen to someone complain, or bitch about first world issues, now is the time to leave this site.  You've been warned.

So, I woke up and...kidding!  I won't be THAT detailed!  I have some decency.

I am about to say something I think I may regret and get hate mail for.  But there just may be someone that also feels the same way, and that makes it worth it.  Today I did not like being a mother.  Didn't want to be one actually.  I had multiple fantasies of clicking my heels and being back to my pre-child self, the one who didn't have the responsibility of another human being.  I'm not just saying this as a way to express how hard it can be when you are a stay at home mom, or to depict the stresses of motherhood in a funny way.  I. Truly. Did. Not. Want. To. Be. A. Mom. Anymore.  It's been bothering me to say the least.  I feel like I should be searching for signs of my period, or thinking about the reasons why I've been a little sad lately and obviously that has to be why I'm not myself today.  But when I boiled it down, it just came to a simple conclusion that I just wanted out.  For a day.  Maybe two.  Okay a week. 

Mommy-hood can suck ass.  If I am just a little bit off my game, every little whine that my child makes can feel like razor blades scratching the skin off my back.  I then begin to second guess every single decision I have ever made in my short time as a parent, and analyze and judge every move I made today, AND it goes like this:

1.  I am letting my toddler suck on her pacifier WAY too much and she will never put two words together let alone speak in a full sentence.  And it is my fault. 

2.  It is not the job of Yo Gabba Gabba to raise my child, even though I made a strong case for that very scenario today.

3.  I said I would try to never lose my patience with Vivienne, and I raised my voice in frustration more than once today.

4.  When I was reading her bedtime books, I SO wanted to just skip through everything and throw her booty in the crib (and I told her she could have 3 and only read 2).

5.  I actually mumbled under my breath (no, she did not hear me) "for gods sake Vivienne, stop the incessant whining and use YOUR WORDS".

The list goes on in my head, and it's not very forgiving.  As I sit here and type this I don't feel like a bad person, I just feel lost.  Lost as a person, and lost as a parent.  Some days when I wake up it's like everything I knew about the day before and all the great stuff I've experienced as a parent are just gone and I can't remember how we even got to this grown up place.  And, yes, I take Prozac.  I'm admitting this because I don't think it's crazy to say these things.  I don't think you have to be a bad mommy to have days where you just aren't in it and plain don't feel like being a parent.  It's not easy to be the most patient person in the universe or to wipe your kids butt all day long and try to tell yourself that it has major meaning and is one of the most important things you could ever do.  It's not easy at all.  And that's all I have to say.

Except for this.  As I'm sitting here typing these words another list is forming in my head.  It goes like this:

1.  Today during her Gabba show, when she brought her blanket over to my lap and I automatically started rubbing her back and forehead -- I had the distinct feeling that I would never know what to do with myself if she ever grew up and left me and I didn't have that wafting smell of Burt's Bees shampoo around whenever I wanted it.

2.  That time I lost my patience with her in the kitchen for whining (omg, the kid can whine) I raised my voice with her, and her little eyes filled with tears and looked at me with such a foreign expression, and she immediately ran over to me to be comforted.  It was a small thing, but it was huge.  I am her safety, and that is my privilege.

3.  All I have to do is smile at her and she will raise her hand and wave at me, and say "Momma" in a sing song voice.

4.  When I went to put her to bed I slung her over my shoulder and stood up, and she squeezed me really tight and made the squeezing noise that Mitch has taught her.  In that moment I couldn't breathe I had so much love for her.

5.  RIGHT before I laid her in her crib she grabbed me, took out her pacifier, and leaned in and kissed me on the mouth.  Put her paci back in, and dove for her crib, full of "cozies" and animals, rolled around and put herself to sleep.  Ready for a new day, a fresh day, tomorrow, full of promise.

What the hell is this roller coaster of emotions!?  The lows and the highs are almost too exhausting some days.  I just read somewhere (and I can't remember where or I would give credit) that being a parent is described like this: awful, awful, awful, awful, awful, MIND BLOWING, awful, awful, awful, awful, BREATHTAKING....and seriously?  I didn't understand it until tonight.

Sometimes it just sucks.  And then it's just so damn beautiful that you don't know what the hell to do with yourself.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


With "sticker art" and the original paci (aka, Vivi's favorite "babba).

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

20 Months!

bloopers ("on your booty!" was said more than once during our shoot ;)
Dear Vivi,

You turned 20 months old yesterday and that is a lot of months baby.  I apologize for missing your 19 month portraits.  Life was hectic I guess.  These pictures are not that great - it's getting harder and harder to get a still picture of you, and the light was not in my favor today.  Oh well.  They can't help but be cute because you are in them. 

You're a riot and a nut, kiddo.  It's been one of my favorite months with you yet.  You are in a MAJOR mommy phase and I can't say it bothers me much.  It never, ever gets old when you reach for me in a panic, or say "momma?!" when you wake up and daddy goes in to get you.  You've really shown me what a privilege it is to be a mommy little one, your mommy.  It is the best feeling in the world.  It's a love I can't describe and it just keeps growing the more you become your own little person. 

You continue to be a gentle little sweetheart, although you do have your bouts of toddler crankiness.  Kissing things and giving love are just the way you are.  You're getting super strong and athletic (or so it seems).  You love physical activity just as much as you love reading books and watching your Gabba show.  This month has been a bit pickier on the eating (olives and pickles have become a common snack around the house).  You had a bout of hives that really scared us for a second.  They looked so much worse than they actually were, but I will tell you that seeing that kind of thing take over your babies body is not a good time.  Other than that, you are growing and thriving and all around an absolute delight.  The bits of words and sounds you make get me so excited to hear what kinds of conversations we will have in the future.  What will you think about?  What will you like and dislike? 

It's a very cliche thing to say that all you want for your child is happiness.  I'm starting to really think about what that actually means (of course I am, and once you're able to read and understand this note, you will be rolling your eyes right now at me).  What does it mean to me that you are happy?  I guess for now it just means that I want you to be loved beyond measure -- and to feel loved and accepted and seen by me always.  That is my vow to you, sweet girl. 

Happy 20 months sweet Tootie.  It's getting scarily close to the two year mark!  I love you, love you, love you.


Monday, May 2, 2011

Teacher El compilation

As I've mentioned before, Teacher El is most beloved around here (Vivi's music teacher).  Anytime we draw anything, Teacher El is the first thing she wants us to do.  Adorable.  I won't tell you which drawings are mine, and which are Mitch's.  It's obvious that the "better" ones are mine anyway, no competition or anything...;)