Weekly Meal Plan: 25 August to 31 August

Weekly Meal Plan: 25 August to 31 August (a humble place)

My very favorite chocolate bar. Good for all occasions, but most especially tough weeks.

Last week was a mess in terms of meals. C has been having a lot of sleep issues lately and I had some big projects needing to be done for work, both of which make for one tired mama who doesn’t feel much like sticking to the meal plan. I tried to go a little easier this week…..

I’m going to include links to the recipes that are available online, otherwise I’ll include links to the resource where I got the recipe. Here’s this week:Continue Reading

Babies Don’t Keep

Babies Dont Keep (a humble place)

At times I feel like being a mother is a continual process of mourning. Even now, when C is still just six months old, I sometimes find it difficult to look through the pictures I’ve taken of her since she was born in January because she has changed so much. It’s like looking through an album and seeing faces that aren’t around anymore, even though I know it’s still her face. It’s still her. But babies change so dramatically and so quickly in the beginning and before I know it, the hair is a little bit longer, the gaze a little bit more “knowing,” and more clothes need to be retired because they don’t fit her anymore.

I went through this with B, too. As silly as it sounds, sometimes I have to stop myself from thinking about how quickly it’s going by because I just get so sad. I’ve been reminded of how I was constantly thinking that he was SO BIG, just because he was bigger than he used to be. And now I look at C and wonder how on earth I could’ve thought he was SO BIG when he was still a tiny baby. Yet I find myself doing the same thing with her.

We’re having some sleep issues with her lately that make the days and nights oh-so-long (or all-too-short, in some cases), but as I set her down on the bed last night for the umpteenth time to pull my hair back or just take a break from rocking her, she started to cry again and wiggled her way as best she could up my leg, reaching her hands up to me, wrinkling her little face up and squeezing the tears from her eyes. My mother heart broke a little and I scooped her up, inhaled her scent, which is like some kind of crazy balm for me, and whispered in her ear that she is pure love.

The saying that babies don’t keep is so true. Before I know it, these moments will just be memories.

Weekly Meal Plan: August 18 to August 24

Weekly Meal Plan: August 18 to August 24 (a humble place)

So B turned four last week and the end of the world did not come. I have to admit that I sniffled a few times…for some reason, this birthday is hitting me hard. It may be because 3 is still kind of, sort of a baby in my mind and 4 is definitely a little boy. It may be because I now have a little girl to compare him to and realize that he’s definitely not as small as he used to be. Where is the time going? I know it’s such a cliché, but I feel it so acutely right now.

I kind of miss my baby boy.

At the same time, I love who he is becoming. I love his little personality coming out more and more each day. I really, really love who he is and I’m so thankful I can say that. When we were in our birth class before he was born, we were asked to go around the room and tell everyone what our biggest fear was. Mine was that I was going to give birth to a sixteen-year-old and have absolutely no idea how to handle him. But who I see he is now is giving me hope for the future!

On the food front…. Did you happen to see my post on my friend Beth’s site suggesting 15 “real food” week night meals? It was fun to put together and I was honored that she asked me!

I’m going to include links to the recipes that are available online, otherwise I’ll include links to the resource where I got the recipe. Here’s this week:Continue Reading

A Motherless Daughter Mothers a Daughter

A Motherless Daughter Mothers a Daughter (a humble place)

I’ve talked before about how I grew up without a mom, but never in detail. I think this is mainly because I assume that the majority of the people who read my site know the story (and don’t want to hear it yet again A Motherless Daughter Mothers a Daughter (a humble place) ). But with the internets, I guess I can’t assume anything, so, in short, my parents weren’t married when I was born. My mother wanted to give me up for adoption. My dad decided he wanted custody of me. He won the court case and I left the foster home I had been in to go home with him when I was two months old. Other than exchanging fairly redundant letters for a few years when I was around 12 years old, I had no interaction with my mother until I was 22 and she had the adoption agency I was originally supposed to have gone through find me. I met her for the first time when I was 28 years old.

It’s been a defining characteristic of my life in many, many ways. It’s difficult to hide, especially when you’re a little girl, that you don’t have a mom. In school and daycare, mother’s day crafts didn’t have a recipient. In Girl Scouts, mother-daughter retreats were either not attended, or I’d go solo, becoming the parasite to some other duo’s memory-making weekend. Puberty was difficult, to say the least. Crushes were stifled. I often went to school without lunches and more often made my own supper and did my own laundry (which resulted in a lot of lavender-colored clothes). I could go on, but you get the idea.

When I was young, surprisingly, these things didn’t bother me as much as they do now. I remember it just being the norm….just how things were. When other kids found out that I didn’t have a mom, they’d ask, “Do you miss her?” and all I could say was, “No.” You can’t miss what you’ve never had.

There were a few things that I did wish for in, what I considered, the “mom” department, but one thing in particular was something that continues to this day as something I’ve always longed for…..simply a mom who would brush my hair. The image of a mother brushing her daughter’s hair is, for some strange reason, uncomprehendingly touching to me.

But I digress.

When we found out C was a girl, I was a little in awe. I really, honestly, truly would’ve been okay if she had been a boy as there was a part of me that wanted a little brother for B (and believed that she was actually going to be a “he”). I could call them “my boys” and my house would be constantly loud and crazy and lacking food. All the phrases that people had thrown at me when they found out B was a boy (“oh that’s good! boys are so much easier than girls!” “little boys just love their mommies!” “the teenage years will be so much better for you!” etc. etc.) floated around my head when I thought about adding another little boy to our clan. I imagined him wearing his big brother’s clothes and again being able to see a tiny baby in all of the little outfits I had cherished and kept in storage for the last few years.

Still… There was another small part of me that really hoped that this second bump of mine would reveal a little girl. And that small part wasn’t disappointed.

So I was in awe. I started thinking about all the things that I would do with my little girl that I didn’t have anyone to do with me when I was growing up. I happened to pick up Gather just before we had the 20-week ultrasound and there’s an entire chapter for tea parties which I pictured doing with her some day. I thought about putting her in little dresses and finding bows for her hair. I thought about buying dolls for her and finally finishing the dollhouse I’ve had for almost thirty years. I thought about showing her (and her brother, of course) how to cook and sew and all the other things I’ve had to teach myself how to do. I thought about talking to her about boys and helping her through THE CHANGE without shame (as I had experienced so much with mine). I thought about teaching her that it’s okay for girls to play in the mud and like trucks (or Jeeps, in my case A Motherless Daughter Mothers a Daughter (a humble place) ) too.

I thought about being her friend. I thought about brushing her hair.

And the more I thought about things, the more excited I got. Of course, on the other side of that, the more I thought about things, the more scared I got as well. Because…really….what in the world do I know about raising a girl? What do I even really know about being a girl? To a certain extent, my entire life I’ve felt like being female is some kind of exclusive club that only little girls with moms were allowed into, and I was never shown the secret handshake.

Sometimes I look at her now and I pray to God I don’t screw her up. I know this is probably a common prayer for most parents regardless of gender, but my worry comes from a place of not really being sure that I’m able to show her what a woman is. At least, not a woman who had a good example of her own to follow.

I know we’ll be okay. That she’ll turn out just fine regardless of my blundering. But I want to do this well. I want to savor it. I want to enjoy a mother-daughter relationship as I’ve never been able to before now. And I want her to not experience the insecurities I’ve had my entire life.

We all want better things for our kids. I want my little girl to be a far better woman than I ever had a chance of being.

Sale at Society6!

Sale at Society6! (a humble place)

Society6 is having a sale on EVERYTHING right now! If you’re looking for some new prints for your home, browse my shop and take advantage of $10 off purchases of $75, $15 off purchases of $100, and $30 off purchases of $150!

Weekly Meal Plan: 11 August to 17 August

Weekly Meal Plan: 11 August to 17 August (a humble place)

B’s birthday tie shirt. How do we have four of these already?

I feel like I should start sharing our latest hair-brained ideas for the future in these posts because it feels like there’s a new one every few weeks. This last week I found a site that lists tiny homes for sale and there was a posting for a “large” one (around 400 square feet) on 5 acres of land in one of the high country valleys (aka. the middle of nowhere). Suddenly both E and I are picturing ourselves there and the logistics of how we do that. So many ideas have been floating around this house in the last month-and-a-half. It’s kind of crazy. But also fun. Weekly Meal Plan: 11 August to 17 August (a humble place)

This Wednesday marks the 4th anniversary of B’s birth. How is that possible? In celebration, I’m going to be making some of his favorite foods this week (the piece de resistance, of course, being Spanish omelet the day of). We’ll be opening presents on Wednesday morning and then heading out to celebrate with his friend T and her family. I hope he has a good time. Weekly Meal Plan: 11 August to 17 August (a humble place)

I’m going to include links to the recipes that are available online, otherwise I’ll include links to the resource where I got the recipe. Here’s this week:Continue Reading