Wednesday, October 26, 2011

shock to the system

we have been home from our mini indiana vacation for 60 hours,
and it has been, well, um, interesting,
even a bit shocking.
i've been shocked about what an adjustment it has been for everyone.
i have been surprised by how maggie has hardly wanted a thing to do with me.
she screamed & cried as we took her away from grandma jane.
mag will hardly even look at me!
that has been a shock.
also shocking that will is so happy to be home;
he is my child that i would have expected to want to stay gone forever.
and sam surprised me by how many hugs he has saved up for me.
the only problem with this is he is so strong he about knocks me over every time.
what is even more shocking than my children's reactions to our return is how out of step i am.
i seemed to breeze through the days with perkiness & purpose.
i could take the mishaps in stride.
oh boy!
i'm still trying to figure out how to not blow a gasket when maggie unscrews the lid off chocolate milk and spills it everywhere,
including all over her fresh, new outfit.
or how she shakes & messes up sam's school glitter birthday poster that i got up at 6:30 to make.
or how she poops her pants just when it is time to leave for school.
and i haven't even mentioned the constant cleaning to still have a messy house.
or the laundry!
hello laundry!
or the late late nights working on halloween costumes.
and the 25 minute hysterical crying power struggles in front of the fabric store,
and pretty much just the full time commitment.
the food,
the finances,
the planning,
the work.
the time.
i have been shocked by how quickly you can lose the rhythm of life
but confident we will get back it.
hopefully sooner than later.

Monday, October 24, 2011

international is the key word

when you are trying to navigate your husband to the airport in a new city at 5:00 am,
try to remember you are going to the International airport,
not the Municipal airport
because you might almost miss your flight.
or at least get to the gate while they are boarding.
i'm just saying that i'm glad we left early enough to have a buffer.
we are almost home,
without the delay of having to take a new flight.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

at the end

at the end of this trip i have realized many things.
i have realized that....
pete & i would a love a trip away once a year,
i enjoy being with pete & feel like i could be around him all the time,
i enjoy eating dinner at 7:30,
& exercising at 9 pm,
going to bed at midnight & waking up at 8:30.
i have realized how much i adore roadside antique stands over antique malls.
i enjoy getting in and out of the car without carseats & coaxing.
it's nice to go in a store without supervising 6 little hands.
i like being able to read a book without being interrupted every 4 sentences,
and i like not having to spend a large chunk of time in the hotel pool.
i have also realized that i wouldn't want this lifestyle all the time.
i choose my kids,
and i choose being a mom,
even over the freedom.
i have realized that i love many things about where i live.
i love my neighbors,
i love having my family so close and all the benefits that brings.
i love my job,
and i love the seasons.
and the snow.
i love the distance we are from sam's school,
and i have realized how important the chinese immersion program is for my children.
i love the mountains,
and i realize how much inspiration that a part of me finds there to be the kind of person i want to be.
i love the access to almost anything you could want.
i have also realized that my dream house is a white 2-story farmhouse,
with acreage, a barn, stream, and forest all in your backyard,
and i prefer the midwest pricetag that would allow you to get that for $235000.
i have realized how badly i want cats, chickens, bees, and a pumpkin farm.
i have realized how much a part of my heart craves this simple life,
and i have realized what a bind i am in to ever have to decide which life i want the most.
i have realized how lucky i am to be able to choose,
how lucky we are to carve out our own destiny.
and i have realized how lucky i am to have a husband who would so perfectly know that this is exactly the kind of trip i like taking.
i have realized all the reasons i am so lucky.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

first 24 hours

 pete & i have taken off to indiana for a vacation,
just the 2 of us.
we have had many laughs,
to name a few...

*when we arrived last night at 11:30 i called our hotel to let them know we just landed only to be informed that they overbooked and they booted us out. they booked another room for us over an hour away from where we were supposed to be staying. the tab was on them, but needless to say by 1:30 am many firm phone calls later we wouldn't have cared if we had to pay double for a room close to things where we wanted to stay. it was easier to laugh about it once we were checked into our original room today.

*we spent some time at a really cool mall downtown indianapolis. it sprawls throughout the downtown and is connected with a tunnel system. it was full of 1000s of high school ffa students. they are here for a convention. they all had on their jackets with their state on the back. we found it odd that we didn't see anyone from utah. during our stroll pete spotted a cute clothing boutique and said that looked like my style of store and suggested we go in. and guess who else was in there? the utah ffa girls! that was the only place we saw utah ffa people. does that say something about me?

*pete wanted to go in banana republic. we both love clothes from there for him, but we don't agree on style. however, i'm always suggesting outfits to him. today i suggested an outfit with khaki pants, plaid shirt, sweater jacket, and tie. i asked pete if he liked it, and he said no. he said he would have to be an english teacher in connecticut. does that say something about me?

we have done more than just laugh about silly things.
we spent some time at the indianapolis motor speedway.
it was rather fascinating...
and cold,
with rain,
and no coat.

we also shopped for lunch at an amish market.
we enjoyed a random smorgasbord of goodies...
pretzel bread, peanut butter spread, hot pepper cheese, sarsaparilla, and, um, pickled okra.

dinner was a different experience.
we went to bub's,
a carmel hamburger shop.
adam richmond from man vs. food did a challenge there.
pete took part in the challenge tonight
and was successful.
go, pete!
it was also fun to eat dinner @ 7:30 pm and sit for 25 minutes to wait for a table with no distractions.
miss you, kids!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

sister craft day

my favorite project of the month

my sister & i get together every monday for a day of crafting, talking, eating, & problem solving,
but mostly crafting.
we devote the whole school day,
and i. love. every. second. of. it!
perhaps it is my favorite day of the week.
the only thing missing from regular sister craft day is the youngest sister.
boo. :(

talk about the old days!!!

Monday, October 10, 2011

through my child's lens

sam's lens

Thursday, October 6, 2011

vanderlinden cafe

do you ever make food that you love so much that you want to literally drink every last drop?
from time to time i do,
and there have been several of those nights this week,
particularly tonight.
it was cold here today,
so i made my 1st pot of soup of the season.
even will loved it.
he said the prayer,
and he said...
"thank you that we could have food that smells so good and be healthy for our body."
not only does it smell good and be somewhat healthy for your body,
it is downright tasty.
if you don't mind "drinking" soup all night,
every time you walk through the kitchen,
then you must make this soup.

rumbi's tortilla soup
(from Domestic Art vol. 2 cookbook)

1 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 c. white onions
1 tsp. chopped garlic
1 tsp. diced jalapeños
8 c. chicken broth
1 can coconut milk
2 c. julienne carrots
1 tsp. brown sugar
1 c. diced tomatoes
1/2 c. diced red onions
1 tsp. salt
3 pre-roasted chicken thighs (i added this to give it more substance); could use a rotisserie chicken, too

mozzarella cheese
tortilla strips or chips crumbled
lime wedge (do NOT leave out!)

pre-heat oven to 425. rub olive oil on thighs and then season with curry powder, salt, & italian seasoning. roast chicken in oven for 45 minutes. meanwhile, combine oil, onions, garlic, an jalapeno in soup pot. sauté for 2 minutes. add remaining ingredients, including shredded chicken; bring to a medium simmer for 5 minutes or until carrots are a little tender. pour soup into individual bowls, tip with corn strips and cheese. squeeze lime over top.

and try to not drink it.
i guess that's kind of weird,
even if it is tasty!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

public announcement

will passed on some very important news to me today.
he informed me that he no longer wants to be called will.
he now wants to be called black widow.
so, if you see him on the street,
just remember,
address him as black widow.
thank you very much.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

all these things shall give you experience

today was a perfect day.
just exactly like the days i dream of...
a perfectly executed list,
no time wasted,
everyone happy & clean,
calm & peaceful home that was full of quality time,
meals that tasted like we were eating in a restaurant,
projects that i wanted to do while the kids were cooperative.
you get the point.
if i didn't know better,
i would have ventured to say that i've got the hang of this life thing.
the second that thought crept into my mind,
i showed it out with a laugh & a memory.
when sam was 6-9 months i was with him in his pediatricians office for a wellness check.
i made a comment that will live with me for so many reasons.
i said that i didn't know what the big deal was.
i thought being a mom (to an only child under 1!) wasn't hard,
and i was trying to figure out what the deal was for other moms.
i'm so grateful my dr. chastised me.
he warned me to watch myself
and just wait.
he also advised that i never say that to other mothers.
i feel like it's ok if i say it now because i am not the same young, inexperienced mom i was then.
2 more kids later and much more living later life,
i shudder at my naivety.
i have learned that being a mother is hard work,
and many days are nothing more than one continuous disaster.
to-do lists have to go out the window most days in order to accommodate the natural demands of young children,
and even on good days it doesn't mean that they have come easily.
if i've learned anything as a mother it is to savor days like this,
welcome them,
and bottle them up for days that are far less desired.
and DON'T think for a second you've got it figured it out
because tomorrow will surely prove you wrong,
and if it's not tomorrow the day will surely come where it will.
i know the storms will rage and fierce winds will come,
days will be blackened,
and all elements will hedge up against you at times during all seasons of motherhood,
but i also know that all of these things will give experience and be for your good.
it will give enough experience to know that days like today are few and far between sometimes,
and experience tells me to savor it.
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