Sunday, March 24, 2013

Art of Maturity

 "A mature person is one who does not think only in absolutes, who is able to be objective even when deeply stirred emotionally, who has learned that there is both good and bad in all people and in all things, and who walks humbly and deals charitably with the circumstances of life, knowing that in this world all of us need both love and charity."   
Eleanor Roosevelt, You Learn By Living

My own lightening bolt moment of maturity came last night.  It involved a toddler taking a scrub in the tub on a Saturday night, and a lizard (technically, a gecko, but they're all the same to me).  After my beloved two year old was all suds up, I noticed out of the corner of my eye Mr. Lizard trying to eek his way out of the tub unnoticed.

I hate lizards.  I fear snakes.  And, in my book, lizards are only one rung lower than snakes.  I usually shriek and scream and jump up and down and then make someone else get the lizard.  Lizards are not my friend.

But in this moment, my child was in the tub with the lizard!  I didn't want to scare him or get him all riled up.  So, how to proceed?  

Squelching my inner longing to freak, I told the Kiddo that Mommy was going to get a jar for the lizard.  Luckily my kitchen is right next to his bathroom.  I then hoisted my 37 week pregnant self up on the counter to reach our mason jars, grabbed one, grabbed the dustpan, and prayed the lizard hadn't gone back into the tub water.

He hadn't.

Which meant that now I really had to do this.  My son just sat and stared in amazement at his mommy with the jar and the dustpan.  Realizing how absurd this looked, I had a good laugh and then I wrangled that bad-boy lizard into my jar and topped it with the dustpan.  Me.  The squeamish one.

I was so astonished.

Now what?

Racing to the back door (also not far from the bathroom....thank God!), I managed to unlock it with my elbow (my hands were not letting go of that jar), and escorted the poor guy to his proper home outside.

Of course, then I raced back to the bathroom where the Kiddo and I conversed at length about the "wizard" in the "yewow daisies" for the remainder of bath-time.  I also got to reinforce that this is why we don't drink bath-water.  It's "disgwusting".  You never know what's been in your tub.

So...maturity reached?  

Well, let's see.  I refrained from thinking that I absolutely must kill the lizard, I was objective even in the face of seriously squeamish emotions, I realized that there must be some good in this little creature (do they at least eat mosquitos??), there is nothing more humbling than wrangling a creepy-crawly, and I believe it was charitable to put the dear fellow in the daisies and not just pitch him on the concrete.

Yes, indeed.  Maturity gained at the ripe old age of 30.  ;)

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Why I Could Never Go Paleo {Todiefor Pasta Salad Recipe}

It seems like everyone (yes, everyone) is jumping on the Paleo bandwagon these days.  And while I have seriously considered doing a Whole30, pregnant and all, I find it easier to show you why I simply cannot see myself going Paleo long-term.

Enter the best pasta salad you've ever had.  Ever.

My Scrappy Pasta Salad {Yes, I used the word scrappy.  Think Monica Gellar scrappy...quick name that Friends episode!}

The Dressing
3/4 cup mayo
1/4 cup sour cream
2 tsp white vinegar
1 clove garlic
1/2 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp dry mustard
1/8 tsp salt

Add all ingredients to food processor and process until nice and smooth.

The Salad
1/2 lb pasta of your choice (I used whole wheat gemelli)
1 carrot, shredded
1 cucumber, shredded
1 tomato, finely diced
1/8 cup green olives, sliced

Cook and drain your pasta.  Add remaining 4 ingredients and 1/2 cup-ish of The Dressing.  Chill and serve or be impatient like me and just dig in.  ;)

Goes fabulously with the best bread ever and a nice dab of butter.  And grab yourself some iced tea while you're at it.

Friday, March 22, 2013

When You've Made a Mistake {A Nursery Update}

I really thought I could make it work.  I had inspiration and I could envision how it would all come together.  But the more I worked at it, the more I realized...

...the blue walls just had to go.

I dreaded this.  Hubster had made his opinion loud and clear at the outset that he really didn't want to repaint the nursery.  I was sooooo confident that I would make it work and be happy with the results.

But the more coral, citrine, gold, white, and Tiffany blue we brought into the room the more busy the room became.  It wasn't a quiet and restful nursery.  It was a circus of color.  It was unfocused.

It was driving me crazy.

And yet, I kept trying to make it work.  "One more project and it will feel so much more feminine in here" I would say.  I was lying.

So, 33 weeks into this pregnancy I announced to the Hubster that we were changing the main paint color in the nursery.  I announced that I was fully aware he was not on board with this change, and I announced that I would be doing all the painting.  Myself.  No assistance needed.


I packed up the Kiddo and together we trudged off to Lowe's and bought a gallon of Valspar's Woodrow Wilson Putty and a new drop-cloth.  And I lugged that gallon out of my car and into the garage, where it sat while I tried to summon the energy to start my project.

All this either thoroughly amused or thoroughly annoyed my dear Hubster.  Either way, he waited exactly one week before he quietly moved all the furniture to the middle of the room, taped off the walls, and began painting.  His only request was that I edge in the tree, which I did.  He even remeasured and repainted the stripes on the striped wall.  What was once a labor of love for his son, he now made a labor of love for his daughter...and for his wife.

We are so blessed to have him for a husband and a father.

But, if I had been honest with myself in January, when I had that brief burst of energy before I came down with the shingles, I would have planned to re-paint all along.  I'd even confided to close friends that if I could do anything, I would paint over the blue with either a grey or an ivory and keep the tree, flowers, and stripes.  But I "knew" that was crazy so we were going to make the blue work.

In my obstinate endeavor to make it work, I kept us headed in the wrong direction for two months.  For two months I could have been painting without it exhausting my body.  I told myself how innovative I was being by working with what already existed.  But I was wrong.

I love C.S. Lewis' quote from Mere Christianity.  I have found it to be true over and over.  When you realize you've gone in the wrong direction, the sooner you admit it and go back in the right direction, the sooner you will make real progress.  

Here is a glimpse of our little girl's nursery now.

It is not perfectly staged.  There are still many, many projects which are undone.  And the hinges for the closet doors have gone missing!  But this room is more restful, and now the colors give pops of life to the room instead of competing with one another.

I am so glad we made this change.  The reality is that I might not be able to carry this little girl all the way to our planned c-section date.  I have been ordered to rest every chance I get, which doesn't leave much room for design projects.  It is such a joy to have this one thing done.  I know everything else will fall into place over time.

Thursday, March 21, 2013


I know it's been quiet here lately.  This baby girl of mine is still baking, but I have been forced to take a huge step back in my daily life in order to preserve my last shred of sanity and keep this girly from making an early appearance.  

I have random lists in my head at all times.  For your general amusement, here is my list of projects that need to be completed, in no particular order (and please, feel free to laugh at/with me because I know these aren't all going to be completed...maybe ever).

  1. pack for the hospital
  2. pack baby girl for the hospital
  3. sew pillow covers for sofa pillows
  4. organize baby girl's dresser drawers
  5. sew a new slipcover for the rocker
  6. sew crib skirt
  7. sew crib bumpers
  8. finish re-painting flowers on nursery wall
  9. hang picture gallery in nursery
  10. hang picture gallery in Kiddo's room
  11. make and order a family photo album for last year, and 2011, and 2010 (and every year going back to 2005)
  12. send in my broken camera lens for repairs (ha! sorry baby girl...looks like we'll be doing iphone video for your birth as well)
  13. sew pretty camera strap for my fancy camera with the broken lens
  14. read each of the 10 books i have currently checked out of the library
  15. add all the pretty vintage items i have to my etsy store
  16. buy baby girl a baby book and write in it
  17. sleep, as much as possible
  18. drink water, as much as possible so my contractions won't be so bad (of course the marathon sprints to the bathroom probably aren't going to help stop my labor)
  19. go to last (LAST?!?!?!) doctor's appointment next week
  20. order stationery and finish thank you cards
  21. get my child out of diapers.....yesternow
  22. get my puppy to stop using the pretty white shag carpet as her personal bathroom
  23. paint chalkboard wall for the Kiddo
  24. paint curio cabinet
  25. clean out a spot for the pack-n-play in the master bedroom
  26. i'd like some pretty pillows for the master bedroom while i'm thinking about it, since i know i'll be sequestered there as the resident milk-cow for at least the month of April
  27. April! take bluebonnet pictures while they're blooming
  28. buy new swimsuit (ugh) that covers my lovely stretch marks
  29. don't forget to go to the dentist next week!
  30. make dermatologist appointment to get rid of those new veins
  31. laundry, laundry, laundry, laundry
  32. pick out a baby name.  this child must be named!!!

Okay, I'm stopping now.  Because really, 32 things on a to-do list when you only have 14 days and 8 hours and 15 minutes before you're supposed to be in the OR meeting your sweet new baby is more than a little crazy.

And really, the one thing I'm most concerned with doing at this point is spending as much time as possible with this handsome man.

I want to snuggle and hold and spend every moment possible with him, making him feel completely treasured and special.  Because everything is about to change!  And I want to make sure he knows he holds a very special place in our family.  :)