Saturday, January 31, 2009

A shout out to my man.

Hoooo boy am I a happy mama these days! I mean, I am just in this blissful, if slightly exhausted, fog of love all the time. I love my kids, I love my husband, I don't love my messy house, but whatever, I would rather play with the aforementioned kids than clean it. I basically adore my life.

Zach and I are really trying to pay attention to everything and we are both just so damn grateful for all we have. And most especially for each other. As "Juno" said, "He is the cheese to my macaroni." Neither of us believe in "the one, " there are too many people in the world for there to be only one person you are compatible with, but that's actually what makes it more special to us, not less. We both know that, should we want, we would have other choices, but neither of us can imagine life without the other. We have been together for about 12 years (married for almost 8). We are not exactly sure of our anniversary date because, at the time, we thought we were just hooking up. Had we known this would last, we might have paid closer attention, but it is sometime around this time of year (end of January) that we first started seeing each other (read: snogging every chance we got.) Man, did we get lucky!

Here is a little info about gorgeous woodworker guy. He is funny as hell. He is extremely affectionate, which is something I can't live without. He is an amazing father. He thinks I'm beautiful all the time, but sometimes he stops dead in his tracks and makes a big deal of it on days when I think "Seriously? Dude, I have baby food stuck in my hair and I'm not entirely sure when my last shower was." Maybe he just knows I need to hear it on those days, but he gives a convincing performance of believing his own words.

I get migraines, really bad ones, and he is the best nurse. He brings me cold wash cloths, runs out in the dead of night for my shots and one time, when I was lying on the bathroom floor because I had just been sick (oh, the bathroom floor is so nice and cool) and I thought I might pass out from the pain, he sensed something was wrong, got up and just laid down next to me on the tile, arms around me and went back to sleep. Something about that simple gesture, 10 years into our life together, made me fall deeper into love with him.

He even saved my kidney once, when we were in the bush in New Zealand, but that's a long story.

He is really fun to travel with. I have to make all the arrangements, but he is up for anything. He doesn't really care where we go, as long as he gets to see something interesting. A few years ago, we were LITERALLY on the last leg of a trip to St. John, the ferry ride from St. Thomas, and he looks at me over the kids' heads and asks "So where exactly are we going?" I almost fell overboard laughing. Not really one for the particulars, that boy. And he loves to travel with my mom. The two of them are peas in a pod. He was the only one allowed to drive when we travelled around Ireland with her and Polly, and when we all went to Kazakhstan to adopt Grace, they decided the best way to beat the monotony of an adoption trip was VODKA! Preferably served in the scooped out carcass of a watermelon (add lemons, juice and the watermelon meat back in and of course, ice.) I thought I was back in high school. We go places with them all the time and Zach's easy nature is one of the reasons it works.

When the kids are sick he gets right in there. One time I was holding Gracie and she started to throw up. Zach cupped his hands into a little bowl and caught the vomit. I said "Honey, you could have let her throw up on the floor, " and he said "No, I wanted her to have something to throw up in." It was really, if disgustingly, sweet. Often I will wake up to an empty bed, and it's because he laid down to give the kids a good-night snuggle and never got up. He loves co-sleeping as much as I do, and if he had his way, I think we would have a 1 bedroom house with a HUGE master bedroom.

He is a beautiful guitar player, really amazing. And the instruments he makes (that's his job) are beloved by all who try them. Our house is filled with gorgeous pieces he makes, from the dining room table we eat all our meals at, to the bed side tables which holds my endless pile of books-to-be-read.

He is a good athlete, a lover of dogs and horses and other creatures. He loves politics and history and being aware of what is going on globally. He has a great head for names.

Mostly, I love the way he loves me and the kids. It is total and complete love. And any guy who grabs the soft little bulge that is the lower part of my belly and says "THAT is SO sexy!" is not someone I am kicking out of bed any time soon.

Happy anniversary baby. We may not know exactly when it is, but we do know exactly what we have.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Busy, busy, busy!

Oh, what a week! First, the inauguration. We watched, I cried, we went out that night to celebrate with friends. And yes, my mom and Polly DID manage to get to their spot. I called them around 7:30am after hearing that the trains and buses and even the very sidewalks of D.C. were jam packed. (As in jammed with people, not filled with jam, although that would be tasty! Anyone know how to write that statement out correctly? 'Cause clearly I don't.) They were putting on layers and heading out. I talked to them a couple of hours later and they were still trying to get to their seats. I heard mom on a call-in interview with a local radio station, but the phone kept cutting out so it was unclear if they were going to get to their seats. Then I heard about all the people who didn't get anywhere NEAR their ticketed area and I figured "Oh well, they won't get to use their tickets but at least she is among the throng and with her peeps."

Oh, I had little faith.

This is Molly and Polly we are talking about. (Oh, you didn't realize their names rhymed? Yeah, and they wear the same shoe size too. And yes, they have been to Bali together so the whole Molly and Polly go to...... you get the point. They are adorable.) So anyway, they, being who they are, of course made friends with two marines who then took it upon themselves to become their personal marines and escorted them all the way to their section (the FRONT of their section to be exact) where my 65 year old mother proceeded to climb a handy lamp-post and watch the whole thing from several feet off the ground. (Hello lamp-post, whatcha knowin? I've come to watch your flowers growin'.) They said it was thrilling. Quite the birthday for my mom.

OK, cuteness overload ahead. I suggest drinking something bitter to cut the sugary sweetness of the following pictures.

These children are ridiculous. It's like they act that cute on purpose, pretty much all the time.

Hockey on the tennis court our town obligingly floods for the winter. Sometimes they plow it for us, but not that day, so we were out there with shovels and brooms. The kids love it.

Zach got Grace pink hockey socks and pink tape for her stick because even though she is a bad-ass, she is still his little frosted princess. That is a whole lot 'o pink happening right there, I tell you what!

And who says you can't surf in the winter.

Awwwww, daaaaaaadddddy.

The ice version of "crack the whip."

So skating, skiing, karate, dance, piano, chapter books (Narnia and the Little House books!!) and we are busy and having fun.

Gotta go, but I'll be back with more later

Friday, January 16, 2009


I get completely obsessed with certain news stories. Usually, there is some horrific tragedy involved, but for once, I am totally absorbed with a story of people behaving well. This has been amazing. The thing that has made me feel so good about it is, of course, that everyone survived, but also that everyone remained calm and relatively dignified during the evacuation. See, I was beginning to lose hope that people think of anybody but themselves ever since a bunch of Wal-mart shoppers crushed a man to death and left him there in their hurry to shop. The world is filled with good people, I know that, but the news can get a bit debilitating day after day. So the happy stories are something I cling to.

And of course the other story I am completely obsessed with is the inauguration. I am absolutely beside myself with excitement. Did I tell you guys that I won tickets to go? I put my name into the lottery for 2 tickets and even as I was doing it, I knew I would win. (Every now and then I have premonitions about things like that.) We aren't going because, honestly, I don't think any of us would have had fun trying to keep the kids happy and warm while dealing with a city that is overrun with tourists, albeit fantastically giddy ones. Just the potty dilemma was enough to make me not want to go. Kai has the worlds smallest bladder, and he is a country boy (read: allowed to pee anywhere he wants outside) so certain social niceties, such as NOT whipping down his pants to pee when in urban settings, are a bit beyond him.

But here is the best part. I was able to give the tickets to my mom and Polly. They were going down no matter what, just to be with their gleeful fellow Americans, AND the inauguration happens to fall on my mom's 65th birthday. She was at JFK's inauguration and shook his hand and also (thrillingly) met Robert Frost. She was interviewed for Vermont Public Radio last week (it airs Monday morning at 7:30 for you Vermonters) and the thing that moved me most about what she said was the fact that she didn't REALLY believe she would see this day. She didn't have the same faith that she thinks our generation had. And she is so proud that "We the People" have actually made the words of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution ring true. Because all men ARE created equal, and it feels like for the first time, this country is finally making some real leaps in meeting it's promise.

It isn't just that Obama is black, although that is huge, especially for a country whose prosperity was built on the backs of slaves. It's that he worked for it. He didn't get into Harvard on his daddy's coat-tails. His family LOOKS like a real American family, with a white mother, an immigrant father and grandparents from the heartland. This family could be anybodies family. America is a melting pot, more than any other place I have seen, and it feels great to FINALLY have that reflected in our leadership. And, as a member of a trans racial family, I am thrilled my children get to grow up in a country where this is not only possible, but, I suspect, will become the norm. I predict lots of crashing sounds in the future as glass ceilings of all sorts start shattering to the ground.

Mom called me yesterday from her seat on Amtrack, cheerfully relating that they were running almost 2 hours late because they were right behind Obama's train. The sounds of the other people on the train celebrating made it almost hard to hear her, but let me tell you, the woman is excited. She can't wait to be shoulder to shoulder and rump to front with her fellow Americans on Tuesday, and I can't think of a better way for a great woman to celebrate her birthday than to be at a party as a great citizenry celebrates the inauguration of a great man.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Avast Ye!

Sorry for the silence, but our lives got a bit insane after the new year. We are a hair over-scheduled. I'm just happy that they aren't in pre-school because they would be spinning like tops. We have ski school, piano, dance class (Grace), karate (Kai. Grace can't join until she is 5) and hockey. All these things are only once a week, and we have 3 days with nothing on the schedule, but the first week of new activities is always crazy. Just getting out the door is a challenge. The fun thing about their ski lessons is that I drop them off and go skiing with a couple of other moms, which is so fun. We have been tearing it UP! Of course between that, cross country and skiing with the kids (which involves snow-plowing for HOURS and hoisting them up onto the chairlift and up any hills they can't skate up) I am practically a broken woman this weekend. Oh, my life is hard. I play all day and have perfect. healthy children. Pity me. Woe!
Then, we had to have Kai's birthday party, which was a pirate theme, but there were also many, many princesses, a king, a storm trooper and Anna, who started out as a pirate and then changed into scrubs from Grace's doctor kit. It was a most excellent crew. So, we had somewhere between 35 and 40 people here on Saturday and I have to say, I feel so lucky to live in this community. Waterbury just has so many deeply cool people! It was a good time.

Kai requested a cake shaped like a pirate ship. So I figured I'd try it. Then he decided he wanted 2 ships having a battle, so I obliged. It was waaaaaaaay easier than it looks. Seriously, no harder than a layer cake, plus, more fun to decorate. Behold...

So when we lit the candles (which were the cannons) on of the "planks" caught fire, but other than that, it was a success. The only thing missing were my nephew Aldwyn and my sister and her husband. Next year though, they'll be here next year.

The revellers....

Noah and Grandma. She is sitting next to the wife of a friend I have known my whole life. Seriously, my mom was pregnant with me when his mom was pregnant with his older sister.

I've known Hannah since we were 9 years old.

The Treasure....

the plunder.

Princess Emmy inspects her loot.

Dr. Anna makes house-calls. The pirate mustache and beard are my favorite part of this outfit.

So, that was super fun. This week we will be skiing a lot in the beginning of the week (both x-c and downhill) because by the end of the week we are looking at a deep freeze. Or, as my high school boyfriend's bus-driver used to say, "It's gonna be colder'n a witches tit in a brass bra!"

I'll leave you with that.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Mostly pictures

Have you ever tried typing with a 10 month old on your lap? No? Well it's not happening for me, so here are some photos of a few recent activities. Missing are Christmas morning, because I hadn't made coffee yet and they were up at 0-dark-thirty, and also the many trips skiing and sledding because, well, I only have so many hands. However, skiing is one that must be documented because DAMN, those kids are cute, and FAST. And fearless. It's awesome. Anyway, Noah is trying to write too so I'm off, but here are the kids.

Dance class. She loves it and she loves her friends.

At Zach's parents with a few of her cousins. There were 9 grand kids there in total, 7 of whom were 5 and under. Fun times!

Opening presents and Grandma and Big Pa's house.

These hockey pictures kill me. She is the most beautiful bad-ass ever.

My sweet boys.
Happy New Year! May it be a great one for us all.