BUT TONIGHT, YOU BELONG TO ME

October 26, 2014

hucklehandmamaface

from a few days ago, when I wasn’t feeling well and he was my nurse

In my heart, I’ve always been a New Yorker. It’s been over a decade since I lived there, yet every year around this time I get really nostalgic for life in that magnificent city, and I miiiight have poked around Craigslist for apartments (ha!) in the midst of a “what if” moment last night. MAKE OF THAT WHAT YOU WILL, UNIVERSE.

But that is not what this post is about.

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ROSY THE APPLES, CRIMSON THE LEAVES

October 12, 2014

Sorbet

image via

Just as I’d suspected, September was a mixed bag, a helter skelter array of misadventures punctuated by a few golden moments and a couple milestones thrown in for good measure.

The first few weeks of school have been frenzied and greuling, with both the mister and me adjusting to life as working parents juggling an infant. We’d thought we had secured reliable childcare for one Roux Huckleberry, but we were mistaken, forcing Babe into the role of primary caretaker of our tiny guy during the hours I’m away at school. And while I’m not working nearly as much as I had been prior to taking maternity leave, it feels as though I’ve never worked harder in my life. I’m sure if you asked, Babe would tell you the same thing. When it comes right down to it, though we’re both grateful that Roux is able to be at home with his parents as opposed to another person, and while it requires a tremendous amount of flexibility and sacrifice, we seem to be finding our way.

October brought with her a burst of inspiration, which is exactly what I needed. We’ve already made two trips to the craft supply store, and all of the Halloween decorations we had on hand have been proudly displayed for days. Elaborate plans for costumes have been devised, and the kids are excited to share the magic of the season with their new little brother.

Oh, that baby! What a deliciously squishy rolly polly he’s turned out to be. Although, he’s not one to sleep too much, to the chagrin of his parents, he is charming as can be, with a smile so electric it makes even the longest nights a little less painful. Kissing him goodbye in the morning is never easy, but the look of joy that washes over his face when I walk in the door at the end of the day, and the squeals of delight that erupt from his body as I scoop him into my arms to smother him with kisses as I drown myself in his scent, those moments are magical.

We spent the weekend rearranging our living room, finding places for things that never quite fit before. We also adopted a half dozen plant babies, and I’m so smitten with them that I’m convinced I need at least a dozen more. A rubber tree! And a Kimberly Queen fern! I mean, this is some fancy foliage. And everything they say about plants is true, in so far as they really do soften the place up and make for a nice and cozy environment, and I’m absolutely certain the air in our house is suddenly cleaner. There are definitely less flies, too, because welcome to the family, Pitcher Plant, you exotic and carnivorous beauty.

We’re coming into a good time, I can feel it. Although the weather here in San Diego hasn’t changed much, there’s been a noticeable shift in energy. Or, maybe it’s just me, finally seeing some light at the end of a very dark tunnel. Whatever the case may be, I’m taking full advantage of all the positive vibes as we approach the busiest and brightest part of the year.

SUMMER, STAY A WHILE

September 1, 2014

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credit to babe baker for this gorgeous shot

Early Friday morning, Emet and Jade left with their dad for the annual Miller Family camping retreat, an event which very clearly marks the end of this beautiful season. They’ll return late tonight, with just one day to spare before the new school year begins, our life once again governed by alarm clocks and lunch boxes.

I like to reorganize their room while they’re away, to tidy their drawers and clear their space of any clutter, in anticipation of the chaos these next few weeks are sure to bring. Of course, all I’ve managed to do up to this point is make a much bigger mess than they ever could! At the moment, however, I’m avoiding doing anything about it at all, since both my mister and my baby are sleeping and I can’t remember the last time I was able to quietly sit and sip an entire cup of coffee with nothing but my thoughts and the ceiling fan buzzing about.

I have mixed feelings about you, September.

We watched the sun set over the ocean last night, and as the last of the light dipped into the sea, it occurred to me that while the freedom of summer break has come to an end, our adventures do not have to suffer the same fate. Sure, we spent more time in our house than anywhere else these past several months, and maybe we didn’t have as many barbecues or sleepovers as we could have, but we do happen to reside in one of the premiere vacation destinations in the world, and I fully intend on stretching out this summer by punctuating the rest of the year with twice monthly beach days and at least a dozen exploring expeditions (as per my goals for this year, ahem) because why live in San Diego if we aren’t going to live in San Diego?

With that, I wish you a very happy and relaxing Labor Day. I’ll be making a slow tomato sauce while I finish sorting through the last of the big kids’ things, all the while pretending that Fall isn’t just around the corner. Summer Forever!

MOVE IT OR LOSE IT

August 18, 2014

flowerbombwebsite

image via

Endorphins might just be my favorite drug. I was reminded of their potency when, last week, I went to my first ever spin class at our local YMCA and felt better than I had in months for days afterward. So good, in fact, that I went to a different class at the gym the following day. I can still feel a tingle in my shoulders, and there is almost nothing as comforting to me as feeling that my body has been used with purpose.

I’m not sure why I go through periods where I’m not as active as others, but it’s never a good thing for me to stay still for too long. I tend to go a bit, well, crazy. How good I feel is directly proportionate to how much I move my body, and it is with that in mind that I chose “get my butt back to dance class” as one of my goals for this year.

My instinct, naturally, is to take ballet. I’m most comfortable – and also uncomfortable? I know, but that’s ballet for you! – at the barre, where each and every class begins with pliés. In my entire life, I have taken exactly two hip hop classes. It’s a style far from where I’m comfortable, and requires from me a different kind of flexibility.

So, with that in mind, I did that thing, the one where you go and do something that scares you, and I registered for hip hop classes, which begin this evening.

Between my broken foot and my unexpected and rather invasive surgery, there is a lot I’m still not quite able to do. I’m not even entirely sure hip hop is the answer, but I do know that just having dance class to look forward to has been good for me. Imagine what actually dancing might do!

I’m nervous, sure, but I’m also excited to try something new, something I’ve been afraid to try for a long time. A hip hop class is nothing compared to what I went through twenty-six Mondays ago, is how I like to look at it, and hey. I might just be the next ballerina turned b-girl, you never know.

SIX

August 17, 2014

hucklesixmonths

Half a year old already, and growing at a rather impressive rate, my Roux Huckleberry is one squishy bundle of delicious baby. Ours was a rocky beginning together, and the past few months have been next level difficult, but today, as we celebrate this six month milestone, my tiny guy and I are in a very, very good place.

I wouldn’t say he’s fussy as much as he is particular, though what he loves one minute he might loathe the next, so it’s always an interesting dance through our repertoire to find what is pleasing to the Huckle at any given moment. Sometimes the Ergo is all he wants, and other times he thinks it to be a mechanism of torture. He likes what he likes when he likes it, and that’s that.

But oh how he loves him some boobies. All boobies, all the time, is really all he wants out of life.

The water is most definitely his happy place. We’ve been taking him to swim at the YMCA since he was six weeks old, and just last week he put his own face in the water for the very first time. And then he did it again. And again! I couldn’t believe it. He kicks and splashes and slaps the water, and is instantly soothed by the sound of running water, so much so that even the most epic of meltdowns can be tempered by a trip to the bathroom for a quick listen.

He is steadily collecting new skills to add to his bag of tricks, including blowing raspberries with his tongue and yes, it is the cutest thing you’ll ever see. The teeth that have been causing him discomfort for almost three months have yet to cut through, which means his wide smile is still gloriously gummy. He smiles all the time, even when he cries, and he is starting to laugh with a lot more enthusiasm, especially at his big brother Emet, whom Huckle considers to be the funniest person on the planet.

The love that exists between all three of my children is a precious thing to witness. The way the older two care for the baby absolutely melts my heart. If only they could care for each other the same way! Ah, siblings.

This past week has been a real turning point, for both Roux and me. Well, mostly I made a personal breakthrough to which he immediately responded, resulting in nothing short of a miracle. A real, viable rhythm is emerging, one that includes a much more peaceful and restful night for us both. Thank goodness, really, because I was starting to worry that I wouldn’t be able to get to enjoy his babyhood, but this is better than anything I could have dreamed. It’s a real love affair we’re having, and I’m in heaven.

It may have taken a whole hell of a lot longer than I ever fathomed it could, but my Huckle and I managed to overcome all kinds of adversity to form a bond so sweet and strong, it eclipses any expectations I had of being a mother to someone other than Emet and Jade.

I am a mother of three, and I can’t imagine life any other way.

To you, my tiny guy,

Stealer of my heart and my beauty sleep, you have brought such an incredible new dynamic to what I thought was a pretty darn good life to begin with. But now that you’ve joined our party, we have all changed for the better. I cherish our conversations before the sunrise, the way you grab my face and pull me close to you. Your bright eyes look at me with the awareness that I am your mother, and that gaze is everything to me. I am your mama, and you are my child, and together we have conquered obstacles far more difficult than any I had encountered previously. Your strength gives me strength, Roux Huckleberry, you inspire me to be stronger. I love you eternally, across all time and space. Thank you for coming to me, you are exactly what I needed.

To the next six months, and six million more.