Set your goals high but not your expectations. ~Dove

Friday, May 28, 2010

Sunscreen--how safe is it??

The EWG recently updated their sunscreen database for 2010.  I thought I had safe sunscreen.  Wow, was I wrong!  This list has identified potential ingredients that may be harmful.  Unfortunately the stores are completely stocked with the items that are potentially harmful.  It's like they're saying... HEY, use me!  Use me!  You know you should use something, it's better than nothing...

But is it really?  Is using bad sunscreen better than no sunscreen?

I was never a active user of sunscreen (maybe SPF 4).  In fact, when I was a teenager and totally knew more than anyone else, I would lather baby oil on my skin and sit in my back yard.  I would sit, literally, for hours.  I'd read books, have a snack, or nap.  My summers were consumed on my lawn chair. 

Almost 20 years later, I can see the results of torturing my skin.  That's what it was, torture.  My skin had no chance of survival with all the baby oil I had used.  My skin, right now, is not as bad as you think.  I do have freckles.  I have dark freckles and light freckles.  Then I do have freckles from the sun.  Freckles sound so much better than sun spots.  But they're there and a piece of me feels burned, demolished.  These sunspots seem to appear darker when I've been in the sun.  I feel like I'm being tricked and my skin looks tanned, but really, they're just my sunspots getting darker.  UGH!

So I have issues trying to turn back time.  I'm beyond help at this point and I can only try and stop what is already happening.  I've been using sunscreen that costs four times the amount of the common sunscreens you see on every shelf.  I've been spending so much more money on sunscreen that (I hope) is safer. 

Even more important, I can stop these crazy sunspots from attacking my kids body.  It's only fair to his future to keep him safe and healthy.  Because you know, the summer should be fun.  We should be able to play in the sun, the water, the sand.  We should be able to do that without wearing a full body suit.  We should feel safe and protected with a sunscreen that will do what it has promised to do.  Protect our skin.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Meet Up with the Girls

I was late, but that didn't bother me. 

I enjoy putting my kid to bed.  It's a ritual he and I love.  So I'm sure they'd understand.  It's not like they'd question me.  In fact, I wasn't the only one who was tardy.

It had been a wicked hot day and as the sun was setting it didn't seem to let up.  The air changed when I drove over the bridge to downtown.  The night air was cool.  Colder than I had anticipated.  The drastic change in weather put me in a good mood.  It was going to be a good night.


Out of one hundred members, there were five of us meeting up.  I am starting to foresee some good friendships coming from this, and our bond is reassuring.  I'm surprised at how comfortable I am around them, even before having my glass of wine. 

We share stories.  We ask for advice.  We laugh.  And we even have tears in our eyes.  It was a night full of hidden treasures.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

My first Etsy purchase!

I made my first Etsy purchase!!  I ordered my Market Tote bag on Wednesday and paid with PayPal.  After three days my payment was accepted.  My Tote was mailed that same day from CA and I received it here in NH on Monday!  That's mighty speedy, dontcha think?

The fabric is designed by Amy Butler.  I learned about Amy Butler from decor8.  Just type Amy Butler in her search box and you will find many many pages of Amy Butler on her blog.  I love the designs, the colors, the boldness of it all.  It's quite delicious if you ask me. 

I'm not very into brands and labels.  They don't interest me and never will.  And I have zero knowledge about fashion, design, or art.  But last week I found myself on a hunt for a bag made with Amy Butler fabric.  I was so excited and I made my purchase within minutes of finding my treasure. 

Today, I have my treasure with me and I cannot stop staring at it, my Market Tote bag.  I can't wait to bring it to the farmer's market and load it up with wine, cheese, lettuce, and soap.  Can you picture it?  I can almost smell it, it's that exciting for me.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Baby it's hot outside...

Right Now:
Partly Cloudy
82° F
Feels Like: 82° F
Humidity: 49%
Wind: From SSE at 8mph

This was the weather Monday afternoon.  Today is supposed to be warmer.  So, so warm.  I love this weather.  To some, it may feel too humid.  For me?  OOOH I love it.  I could spend the day outside most of the day.  It's partly cloudy, in fact there's barely a cloud in the sky this week. 

These are my feet, and please excuse the lack of polish. 
I'm kind of on a no-polish-strike.
I work in a cubie all day and I wore my flip flops. 
My pants look longer than they really are.

I spent my day toddling around downtown and had lunch outside.  After ordering a flatbread sandwich I made my way to pick up my ice coffee and sat outside and people watched.  I wasn't particularly dressed for the outing, but nonetheless, I soaked up my vitamin D for the afternoon.
My ice coffee (I like it black) didn't stay iced very long.  The ice was already melted when I was only halfway finished.  I have been using Badger sunscreen. I'm kind of a fan. As much as I like the typical sunscreen smell, I don't really like smelling like coconuts when I'm not at the beach. This Badger sunscreen, yes SPF 15, when applied may leave a faint pale color. This does blend in once the cream has been absorbed. Bonus: safe for kids too!

Monday, May 24, 2010

twinkle twinkle, you're my little star

You twitch and then you fidget.  But you are comfy.  Your favorite blanket has become a pretzel around your legs.  I un-crumple it and cover you again.  Your skin feels cool, but you're not cold. 

I check in on you a couple of times.  I can't stop watching you sleep.  Your face twitches and you lick your lips.  Your mouth is dry from breathing through your nose.  You turn the other way and you become still again.

It's a warm night.  The window fan is on high.  I hear the chirps of crickets and ribbits of frogs.  The occasional airplane flies overhead and drowns out the night peepers.  I hear you quietly breathing.

Your features are different in the dark, by night light.  Sweet dreams silly putty.

Organic Moroccan Mint Green Tea

I've been drinking a lot of tea lately.  By a lot, I mean 5-6 cups a day.  Weekday's while I'm at work I drink tea quite frequently.  I've actually had to force myself to use the tea I've had at home in my cabinets before I'd allow myself to buy more tea. 

I love shopping for tea.  I love looking at all the flavors.  Even the containers catch my eye.  Sometimes you can find me in the market standing in the tea isle, just staring at them all.  Some stores don't have a good selection.  Other stores have a crazy variety and I can lose track of time while on my lunch break.  (Yes, I've spent and entire lunch break looking at teas.  Only to walk out empty handed because I know I need to finish the supply I have sitting in my desk at work.)

Black, white, green, or herbal?  My first choice is green, Jasmine Green is one of my favorites.  I generally don't drink tea that has fruit, but sometimes I'm craving the sweeter tones.

Whole leaf or bag?  I generally have no preference, but I am picky about bags that have no strings attached.  It bothers me if I have to stick my fingers in my considerably warm tea to take a tea bag out.  And I don't like to use a spoon because I don't use a spoon to stir my tea, since I drink my tea black.  

I recently picked up a new flavor by a local company, White Heron Tea:  Moroccan Mint Green Tea (loose leaf).  I was hesitant to buy it because of the mint flavor.  The mint is spearmint and I actually don't mind it.  Although, I'm not sure if I could drink this as a morning tea.  This tea reminds me of that piece of gum I start looking for in the afternoons.  Having this flavor in the afternoons is the type of perk I need to get through my day...

Balloon Heaven

If I could choose what my heaven could look like, I'd like it to be filled with balloons.  So many that when I walked, the balloons would be pushed aside with my steps.  They'd float up, then down.  They'd be red, blue, yellow, white, purple, orange, and green. 

I'd have a heaven of balloons and they'd be mine to keep.  They would never deflate.  My heaven of balloons would be magical and extrodinare.  They'd make me feel so happy inside.  I wouldn't be able to imagine more happiness.

I believe this is what my kid experienced this weekend.  He had a heaven of balloons.  The stage was full of everything he could imagine.  LOTS of balloons!  Balloons can make him giggle and smile from ear to ear. 

If I had a heaven to choose, it would be a room full of balloons.

Friday, May 21, 2010

1st time on the potty

I was packing J's lunch for the day and getting ready to go to work when J finds me in the kitchen and starts babbling gah-gah down the hallway.  Typically gah-gah refers to his pacifier, but he only uses it when he's sleeping.  We don't encourage him to walk around with it during the day.  So when I hear him saying gah-gah I have no idea what he wants because he's standing there pointing down the hallway.  I asked him to show me what he needed and he walked straight into the bathroom and pointed to the toilet. 

That's a toilet honey, not a gah-gah.


Yeah, toilet.  Did you want to sit on it?


Okay, you can sit on it (I put the lid down and set him on top of the lid)

He sat there so proudly and for a minute, I actually thought he was going potty.  After a few minutes of explaining what Mommy and Daddy do on there, I realized he was looking at me like a deer in headlights. 

So I said, Mommy and Daddy go stinky in here.

Eeeeooouuuuu!! (while waving his hand)

Yeah sweetie, peeuuuu!

It was the only way I thought about telling him.  It's also the way he tells us if he's gone poop.  I can't imagine he'll be potty trained any time soon, he's only 18 months old.  But today was the first day he showed an interest in sitting on the toilet!  Somehow, I'm really excited about that.  :)

Thursday, May 20, 2010


Update on my funk...

The incredible weather today (80 and sunny) has lifted my spirits.  Add that to a 30 minute walk made me realize I want to start running again.  Okay, who am I fooling... but I do enjoy jogging.  I should really attempt this as some sort of personal goal, right?  I'm no longer breast feeding, so technically, I have zero excuses.  I know I could have jogged during my breast feeding months, but really?  Nah, it just wouldn't do any good. 

Today's walk felt healing.  Empowering.  I wanted to keep walking for the rest of the day.  But my cave of an office was calling me back. 

Before going back to the grind, I made a point to stop for some hearty spinach and chicken soup, cheesy garlic bread, and locally made creamy orange soda.  And may I say: YUM!  I honestly wish I had my camera to take a picture because for $6.95, I had found my heaven this afternoon lunch.

I sat outside at a table with umbrella and hardly noticed how windy it was going to be.  Maybe it was because I was at the table alone, but I honestly thought I had to lay on the table to keep it grounded.  For some reason it felt very symbolic while sitting there clinging to an iron table in hopes my soup and glass bottled soda wouldn't come crashing down.  My day was just perking up and I would do anything to keep that from ending anytime soon. 

Windows down, sun roof open, warm air breezing through my hair.  I'm reminded there are 30 days to go until I'm on V-A-C-A-T-I-O-N.

Stuck in a funk.

My mind is mush.  My mind is blank.  I'm in a funk.

There is usually something on my mind, the smallest detail.  But today, there is nothing in there.  The more I try to focus, the more empty I feel.

I took yesterday off from work.  J stayed home from daycare.  We had the day to ourselves.  The weather was gross, too rainy to think about going outside.

It was a mental health day.  We both needed it so much.  But it has left me feeling blah.  It's 9:15am and I have barely finished a cup of tea.  My first cup!  Usually I've started my third cup by now.

So today, I'm here, in my cubie at work.  I wonder.  Not about anything particular.  Well, yes, I guess I do.  I wonder how soon my day can end so I can go home with my silly putty.

5:00pm is just too far away.

I hope to get out during the lunch hour and take a much needed walk.  Maybe I'll feel refreshed and ready to move forward.  Maybe not? 

Do you ever have days like this?  What helps you get out of your funk? 

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Almond Poppy Seed Soap - Jenness Farm

One word:  YUM!

This Almond Poppy Seed soap is fantastic!  The farms description holds true, and I love how the poppy seeds create exfoliation for the tougher parts of my skin.  I honestly feel like someone is scratching my back when I use this soap.  Sometimes I cannot stop scrubbing my back!

I bought this soap when I went to Jenness Farm's open house.  I couldn't wait to use this soap!  Well I've been using it for over a week, and I swear, I think I'm addicted to it and have been using it too much.  The bar is half gone! 

I love the poppy seeds!  Have I mentioned that yet?

The almond scent is mouth watering too.  The bar does create big bubbles, but my focus does not last on the lather with this bar.  I'm scrubbing too much... the poppy seeds feel fantastic!!!

I give my personal rating, from 1 to 5 bubbles: 5!  blub-blub-blub-blub-blub

Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson

I purchased this book not realizing it was the young readers edition.  I'm actually glad I had this version as there were pictures throughout the book.  The story was also edited for a younger reader, but that didn't bother me.  In fact it made reading the story very colorful.  I haven't read the adult edition but I would imagine it is written just as well.

Three Cups of Tea by Greg Mortenson is a remarkable story, dedicated to building schools for children in Pakistan and Afghanistan.  In turn, Greg believes educating these children will help end war.  The young readers edition includes an interview with Greg's daughter, who has been to Pakistan a handful of times and can speak first hand at what life is like for the children in Pakistan.  This edition also includes a time line of events that occurred throughout Greg's experience. 

If you haven't had the opportunity to learn more about Greg Mortenson and what he's committed his life to, I encourage you to pick up this book, or check out the organization Pennies for Peace.  Greg is a true hero and trooper in his commitment.  I think if we were all able to accomplish a quarter of what Greg has done, our world would be a different place.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Waiting for lunch

We went out to lunch yesterday and while we waited we had to occupy some of J's time.  The restaurant gave us a couple of crayons to help occupy his time.  But when coloring wasn't that interesting anymore (shocker!), we had to think of a few other things to do.

We sang songs.  Row Row, Baa Baa were the two that he wanted to hear.

We played I Spy.  Although, J played it more than we did.  He continued to remind us there was a Mickey on the wall, a horse hanging from the ceiling, and apparently someone in the restaurant reminded him of Nana.  But no, it wasn't Nana.

We gave HI-fives.  This is new to J so it was really fun for him to go back and forth with me and my husband.  We also like to buzz each other by touching our index finger with his.  I'm not sure how this game started but we've been doing it for as long as I can remember.

We took pictures to update our cell phone screen savers.  J loves cameras, and loves saying cheese to show off his 7 teeth that, for some reason, makes him very proud.

I don't know where he gets this goofy grin, but I love it... slimy with drool and all! 

So I'm curious, when you go out to eat as a family.  How do you occupy your time while waiting for your food to arrive?

Friday, May 14, 2010

Blue Eyes

Back and forth, we rock together.  The chair creeks and you're snuggling in my arms.  You're a little chilly from the bath but enjoy warming up in your blue blanket that I've wrapped around your shoulders and back.  You drink some milk, then find your ga-ga.  You offer me your ga-ga but you're being silly because you know Mummy doesn't use ga-ga's.  You shake your head 'no' and giggle. 

Back and forth, we rock together.  We're rocking slowly, very gently.  Just enough that we barely feel the rock but it melds our bodies together.  You've cocooned in your blanket.  My arms are wrapped around you.  You ask me to sing Row Row, so I do.  I sing the song a few times. 

Back and forth, we rock together.  You're very relaxed, not fidgety, like you usually are.  It has brought back memories of you as a newborn.  Your body is relaxed and we're both enjoying the moment.  I'm afraid to breath, I may break the moment.  Our moment.

Back and forth, we rock together.  Your eyes are wide and pupils are dilated.  I can see my reflection in them.  Your eyes look glassy but I know your sleepy.  You barely blink while you stare back at me, in my eyes.  Our eyes are the same shade.  Blue-grey eyes never looked so beautiful until I saw them on you.  Those eyes take hold of my heart, my soul.  I cannot blink. 

Back and forth, we rock together.  We've been silent for almost three minutes, your eyes still wide.  Calmly, you take your ga-ga out of your mouth and softly ask "Row Row".  How can I refuse his request.  I sing so softly, it's like a lullaby.  We rock to the beat of the song.  It's like we're in a boat and we're drifting off to sea very slowly.  I can almost hear the water lapping against the side of our boat.

Back and forth, we rock together.  This will be a moment I will treasure forever.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

The Wheels on the Bus Go Round and Round...

It's 7:30am and J and I hop into the car.  It's our typical morning.  His lunch and diaper bag are packed and we're off to daycare.  I mention to him multiple times during the morning that we're going to school and that he's going to play with so-n-so today.  It will be fun, I reassure him.  He never gives me a hard time when going to daycare, but I still like to prepare him for where he's going.  He's there five days a week and has been going to the same daycare since he was 8 months old.

J is 17 months old and sometimes the routine isn't so much a routine.  But I try my best to keep the morning traditions every weekday morning.  So by 7:30am we're out the door and into the car.  I've made him a quarter of a bagel with some butter, cut into thin strips so he can get a few bites out of each piece.  He calls them baeh.

As I back out of the driveway I hand him his first piece of bagel.  He munches and smiles back at me showing those 7 teeth of his, bagel bits too.  We drive for fifteen minutes in the car, part of the drive is on the highway.  But during the fifteen minute drive to daycare, J and I play the bus game.  He lets me know every school bus he sees.  And let me tell you, he will sometimes see them WAY before I do.  I'm quite impressed with those eyes of his actually.  And I tell him.  I doubt he understands, he's 17 months of course, but I tell him I'm impressed anyways.

Sometimes we only see two buses, sometimes we see six.  This morning we saw seven!  J was so excited, I could feel him squirming in his car seat with excitement.  Sometimes he thinks a big van is a bus, but I correct him and he will agree and shake his head 'no' with me.

The ride to daycare usually ends up with J asking me to sing the bus song.  So there I am, with hand motions and all, singing The Wheels on the Bus Go Round and Round... ALL Through the Town.  Oh the sight some morning drivers must have of me as they pass by.  I giggle but I couldn't picture my morning any different.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Coconut Oil

Have you tried coconut oil?  It's not just for cooking.  You can use it on your skin or hair too.  Depending on your skin type of course.  I used coconut oil on my skin a few months ago.  I didn't leave it on, but rather applied it to my face and let it sit for a few seconds, then took a warm wash cloth and wiped my skin clean.  I did this for a few days because I had weird dry patches on my skin.  The coconut oil cleared it up!  (This was also true when I applied the coconut oil on my arms.  I had small bumpy things that always appear during the winter months.)

I've also used the same coconut oil in cooking.  Particularly when I cook chicken on the stovetop, I use coconut oil instead of butter/spray.  I cover the chicken and cook as usual.  The chicken comes out perfect!  The heating properties in the coconut oil hold well with cooking.

There are two types of coconut oil:  Refined or Unrefined.  The difference?  One has all the nutrients in it and smells coconutty.  The other has been stripped of any impurities, as well as any good nutrients, but sometimes this form is better for cooking.  Read the labels before buying and make sure you buy the unrefined.  Some will also tell you the oil is virgin or extra virgin.  There is no such thing as extra virgin, this is a marketing tool to try and get you to pay more.

There are also so many health benefits to eating coconut oil.  You can read the list here

Coconut oil is primarily used from a solid state.  Unless the room temperature is too warm (or once the oil touches your skin), the oil will turn to liquid.  But the oil can be substituted whenever butter is used.  I've even used coconut oil on a bagel! 

Typically I store my coconut oil in my linen closet... until dinner time... it ends up back in my kitchen cabinet.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Missing the passion

I was never an over achiever.  Never a go getter.  I basically just do what I need to do to get by.  I don't know if this is something I inherited or something I have learned over the years. 

My grades in school were always B's and C's.  My theory was, why do I need an A if a C will be just as good?  I didn't see the benefits.  So that attitude has carried through to my life now.  It sounds silly, I know.

I work full time, Monday through Friday, yes 8-5.  I have an okay job.  It's not something I saw myself doing.  In fact I never visualized the kind of job I have.  I don't know why. 

I always saw myself as a hands on kind of worker.  I like seeing results.  It makes me feel like I've accomplished something.  What I do 40 hours a week is not a hands on kind of job.  But I've been doing the same thing for almost 6 years!  What have I done to myself? 

I don't want to go into what my resume looks like, but when I think about the details, I have a hard time recognizing me.  Have I lost myself along the way?  I took this job thinking, oh I'll be here for a year or two.  Then what?  I look back and my intentions were not about staying long term.  But where would I go or what would I do? 

I feel like I'm at a crossroads again in my life, but with a family this time.  This last time I felt this way was when I was 25.  Oh the quarter life crises saga... Did anyone else go through that?  I certainly did.  And I thought I wouldn't experience that again until I was, oh, maybe 50.

My passion is with my family, my kid.  But I need an income.  I need this balance in my life, but where will it come from?  I've been swirling ideas around in my head and some ideas excite me.  Ultimately, I haven't found my missing link.  It frustrates me and then I plug along until the urge strikes me again.

Well I guess my urge is back and I'm even considering going back to school.  (Sshhh... I don't want to say it too loud.)  Until I know I can commit to something.  But what class would I take?  I suppose I have to think about that some more. 

I do want another baby in a couple of years, and that is important to me.  So whatever happens, needs to be accommodating to my family.  I need to be able to focus on them, but also have a job that doesn't have a grey cloud.

Perhaps my current job would be different, if the economy wasn't in the slump it's in now.  I think the industry I'm involved with is suffering and we're trying our hardest to keep treading.  But I know that when I come to work and it's hard for me to smile and say g'morning, I think I have a problem.  My dreams at night are even portraiting my possible future.  I suppose it's time to really delve into this because I'm missing the passion.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Still Alice by Lisa Genova

I have a new favorite book.  Well, I will add this to my top 10, although I may need to revisit my top ten list.

Anyways, I finished Still Alice.  Oh this book made me think, about my life, about people with Alzheimer's disease.  I played the what if game way too often.  It was kind of depressing actually.  But I enjoyed the book, the story, the writing.  I truly enjoyed it all.  If words had color, this book did.  I never really understood how Alzheimer's disease can affect someone.  My ignorant assumption was like turning a light off, and the memory was gone.  Eventually, well, this does happen.  But to go from having a memory to losing your memory is quite scary, sad, and frustrating.

In Still Alice, Alice (age 51) teaches at Harvard University and learns that she has early onset Alzheimer's disease (EOAD).  The disease takes hold of Alice's life quite fast and her life is turned upside down.  The story is told from the view point of Alice and how she loses control of her memory.  She's a very successful and talented teacher, advisor, writer, mother, and wife.  The instant she learned she had this disease, she realized everything started to make sense.

Alzheimer's disease is hereditary.  I didn't know that.  This story is fictional, but with nonfictional facts.  The author mentions that the medicine that is discussed in this story are actual methods of treatment.  But there is no cure for Alzheimer's disease.

I actually miss reading Still Alice.  I'm sad that I finished the book.  I have been left with an incredible feeling that I doubt I'll find another book as good as Still Alice.  I'm sure I will, but you know, after you've read such a great story, it's hard to find that next book that is just as good.

A Mother's Day weekend

My silly putty and I had so much fun this weekend.  I didn't want to go back to work today.  He's growing so fast and talking so much more.  His little babbles are starting to form actual words, and even though it takes me a while to recognize the word, I'm baffled at how much he can say.  He'll even request I sing a certain song for him.  His favorite?  Row Row Row Your Boat is his #1 request.  Next is the bus (BUH) song, aka:  The Wheels on the Bus.  After that is BUH BUH: or Baa Baa Black Sheep.  We sing other songs too but those three are constantly being requested.  And he will actually say to me:  Shon.  For a while I had no idea what that mean.  But his anxiety quickly showed me he was hoping to hear me sing a SONG.  And if Dada is around, watch out... J will turn into an orchestra conductor and request Dada or I sing.

My silly putty was very loveable this weekend.  He peppered me with lots of smooches, and he's now giving closed mouth smooches.  :)  He preferred to sit on my lap and play with his trucks or read his books.  I kind of felt bad for my husband as he tried to play with J, sometimes J just wanted to be with me.  But that's OK because I know there will be days where J will want nothing to do with me, so I soaked up all the cuddle time he and I had this weekend.

It was a typical New England spring weekend: rain, wind, cold temperatures.  Brrrr!  But we made due and did what we could.

He even tried mowing the lawn at Nana and Bumpa's house

But his favorite... I mean, absolutely favorite activity is coloring.  He jumps up and down at the thought of coloring.  How can I say 'no' to my silly putty??

Picking a page to color while visitng Nana and Bumpa

We even made it to a playground on Sunday but it was so windy, like hurricane wind... we could only manage to stay at the playground for 10 minutes.  There were a few other families at the playground with us.  But J didn't want to leave.  I felt so bad, he really enjoys playing on the shlieh (slide).  "Next time, we'll come back another day"... but J was still sad.  My heart broke so we went to an indoor playground, (*cringe*) at McDonald's... and of course the slides were for older kids.  But we sat in the play area and watched the other kids play while we ate lunch.

What I'll remember most of my Mother's Day weekend is how much my 17 month old son wanted to spend time with his Mama.  He was always looking for my lap, looking to give me a smooch, and looking for some extra cuddle time on the couch or rocking chair.  I soaked it up and my heart melted like butter. 

Friday, May 7, 2010

I went for an oil change and of course there were more issues...

Every time I use the breaks my steering wheel would shake.  Not all the time, maybe 80% of the time.  It's been this way for... oh... maybe 4 months now.  But I think rotating my tires would take care of the problem.  What did I know? 

Apparently not a whole lot.

Two hours!

That's the amount of time I sat in the waiting room at the dealerships Service department.  I suppose going to the dealership was my first mistake.  But they had sent me a coupon.  Save $5 off an oil and filter change.  Hook, line, sinker. 

They got me.

But I knew I had a problem.  I just didn't know how bad my problem was.

Two rotors, the ball joint boots are cracked, alignment is off, oh and I have a nail in my tire.  Don't forget the oil change with $5 coupon!  And I added a request that they fix my rear windshield wiper since the rubber wiper was missing.  But I do get a free car wash!  (Which is MUCH needed this time of the year here in NH!)

I saw the estimate, 2 hours later.  And it was going to take at least another 2 hours for them to finish everything.  I wish I knew a mechanic, a friend or my husband.  But I don't.  And I have zero sense about what is REALLY needed and what isn't.  But I do know I need my car safe since I do all the driving to and from daycare with J.

I left the dealership in a rental car.  It's a Chevy Colbalt.  Oh how I feel like I'm back in high school by driving this small car.  Although in high school I drove a Ford Taurus, which is a little bigger than the Colbalt.  Needless to say, I felt like I was younger driving a smaller car.  Thankfully the dealership is paying for this rental, despite my credit card being held for any incidences, and yes I declined their rental insurance agreement.  My commute was only 5 miles and I (knock on wood) don't see myself in an accident anytime soon.

Of course I'm not looking forward to seeing the final bill.  I'm expecting to see (gulp) $800, hopefully less.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

No poo - Week 8

8 weeks have gone by.  This week has been a little humid so I've been using the BS rinse on the 3rd day instead of the 4th.  My hair feels okay.  Not great, but okay.

I have been reading up on some organic shampoos.  After using Aubrey's moisturizer and serum, I've been thinking about trying their shampoo and conditioner.  I don't necessarily feel I need to shampoo my hair, but I feel like my hair is lacking something.  It feels soft, but coarse.  But that doesn't sound right.  Maybe brittle is a better word?  Or frizzy?  I think the change in the humidity has changed the texture of my hair.  I can't think of what else to do, but try something with more conditioning.

I definitely feel like I'd fall under the texture category but I'm struggling with the concern.  Frizz or coarse?

Has anyone else have this issue?  I kind of feel like I would be abandoning the no poo method.  I don't want to sound like I am.  But I feel like my hair needs different help now and maybe the no poo method is inappropriate with the warmer weather.

My hair is generally straight.  Over the course of the past few years a wave has developed throughout my hair.  When my hair is short, like it is now (shoulder length), I tend to blow dry my hair because the waves don't look right with short hair.  When my hair was longer you couldn't notice the waves because my hair was so heavy it would pull most of the waves straight.

I've tried embracing the wave.  Really, I have.  But I just can't.  I don't know how to work it.  I've tried all sorts of products and techniques.  Nothing seems to fit.  So I feel like the waves that I do have are turning to frizz and I don't know how to cope with that.  Each strand looks straggly and not relaxed.  Stressed?

I feel like I'm over-analyzing but the shampoo I'm considering is quite expensive.  Do I splurge?

Spaghetti O's

Now that J can eat with a spoon, there really is nothing I won't let him try.  For a while I was holding back on too many foods that required a spoon, just because he had a hard time with his coordination.  But he has surprised me.  So I've let go of helping him and he shows me how proud he is when he eats with a spoon.

I cringe when he eats spaghetti o's.  He doesn't eat them that often, maybe once a month. 

It's just so messy.

No matter how much I clean his tray, it can take days for the sauce to completely wipe clean.

But he loves eating with a spoon.  The fork, well, he wanted to use that for his toast... but he was also using it for the spaghetti o's.

And yes he was just as excited to help me clean up.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Discovering old diaries

I found a couple of my old diaries this morning.  They were as old as 1996.  I thumbed through a few pages and my entries were familiar but were about someone I once knew.  Some girl who didn't know who she was or wasn't sure where she'd end up.  I was embarrassed to be reading these diaries, even if it was just to myself, about myself.  There were moments in my past that I forgot about, while others were ingrained in my memory.  I typically wrote in my diary when I was having a bad day, or if I was struggling with love.

I felt like I should have erased the past.  I actually started to consider throwing my diaries away.

What did I need to remember?  A lot of it was heart breaking moments.  Confusing mind games that most people in their early twenties go through.

I was just out of high school, starting college.  I was starting a life I was unsure about.  I worked.  I went to school.  I commuted.  I lived in dorms.  The people that were floating in and out of my life were important to me at that time.  When I read these diaries I can see how immature I was and how little I knew about myself. 

Why am I saving these diaries?  Maybe it will help me in the future.  Maybe it will help me remember what it was like to be just out of high school, experiencing the highs and lows of love.  I know I'll need the reassurance some day, when my own kid(s) will be entering adulthood.  Maybe I won't need these diaries at all? 

Reading my old diaries has made me realize how much I've grown, how much I've changed.  And I'm still changing now.  I guess that's why I hang on to these diaries.  In some way, I appreciate these documents from my past.  It's a window that I have kept open, even though those doors were closed many years ago.  It's important to remember who we were, and what made us who we are today. 

It's important to me.  As much as I do get embarrassed to read my old diaries, to see how silly my life was back then is important to me.  It has made me into the person I am today.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Aahh Lilacs...

I love lilacs.  I actually forget how much I love their smell until they bloom again.  This week the lilacs have bloomed and I'm reminded how much I love summer.  Although it's not officially summer.  Lilacs remind of the summer heat and how potent their smell drifts through the warm breeze.

I grew up with lilacs in my parents yard.  It's one of the smells I took for granted.  Years later I'm reminded of those hot sticky summer days when the neighborhood kids played outside until the sun went down.  Nostalgia hits me hard this time of year and I think about adding a lilac bush in my yard.  There aren't too many things that can make me feel grounded.  Somehow when I smell lilacs, I feel like my roots have taken hold of my ankles and can shake me awake.  Make me realize what makes me tick.  Lilacs are powerful like that.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Sometimes babies need mental health days too

I don't agree with sending toddlers to daycare full time, five days a week from 8-5.  But I do it because I financially cannot stay home either.  It's something I have to deal with every day but it's also something I've grown to accept.  I see the growth between my son and I, from the time we spend apart, I feel like our minutes together are twice as bonding.  I have nothing to compare it to since I have been back to work, full time, since J was 12 weeks old.

Today was a day that my 17 month old son needed a mental health day.  Unfortunately my husband and I needed to be at work.  It was a sad morning as I was dropping J off at school.  His little 2 year old buddy was there and greeted J with a big smile and a wave, but J didn't look as pleased. 

He clung to me like a little monkey and if I put him down he cried.  I've never experienced this from him.  We've been going to the same daycare since he was 8 months old.  But today felt like it was day 1.

I wish I had the capability to say: OK we're playing hookie!  Maybe someday I will be able to plan something in advance because an impromptu day off was not obtainable today.  My poor baby, who loves spending his days with the other kids, wanted to spend his day with his Mum. 

My heart broke as I left him this morning.  His watery eyes and red nose stared back at me through the kitchen windows of his in-home daycare.  I waved and smiled back to him, hoping it was enough reassurance that he would have a good day.  And that I do love him.  Despite my dreadful ride to work, I wanted to run home with him so badly. 

Someday I will be able to afford to spend more time with J, and hopefully baby #2.  Someday.  Unfortunately we will have many more struggles like we did today.  I know my baby will still love me at the end of the day, and will hopefully accept my apology with hugs and smooches when I pick him up at 5:00.  It's all I've thought about today as I watch the clock tick slowly, minute by minute.


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