On the hunt

I mentioned in my last post (that went up like a bagillion years ago) that I’d like to be more intentional about how I spend my time with JR. I don’t have plans on scheduling us to the point of exhaustion, but I’d like to have this conversation a bit less frequently…

Him: What are we doing today, Mama?

Me: Um. Well. Hmmm…hey, here’s some crackers!

So the other day I decided to take advantage of the nice(r) weather we’d been having and sent JR on a scavenger hunt. He was in charge of holding the list, finding the objects, and checking them off as we went. I was in charge of taking pictures so we could show his dad when he got home.

Here’s what we found:


A red car


A soccer ball


A stop sign (the sun was in his eyes)


A squirrel (it’s up in that tree back there, I swear)


A flower (also in the background…and I don’t know what JR is doing)


A bike


And our checklist

The whole thing took us about 30 minutes (JR has a tendency to get distracted and we had a lot of “No, YOU the hold the pay-perrrrrr” at first) and ended up being a lot of fun. Recommended!

2011 recap

Sundry does this every year, and I always love reading it, so I figured I might as well join in. You should, too! Leave your responses or a linky-link to your own…posty-post…(I don’t know)…in the comments.

LET’S DO THIS, Y’ALL.

1. What did you do in 2011 that you’d never done before?
Became a mostly stay-at-home mom. I’ll admit, it threw me for a loop there for a while, but things are good these days.

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I always make a resolution to drink more water, but it never happens.

As far as next year, I’d like to more intentional about how JR and I spend our time. I also want to be more proactive about scheduling time for me to do things that have nothing to do with preschoolers.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
We had about a million babies born at church, but as far as people close to me, I’d say:

  • My new friend Katie who has the best attitude (and hair) ever — mama to Myles
  • My lovely friend Leah who is intimidatingly cool and just fantastic — mama to Grey
  • Maura, the love of my life — mama to Arden
  • Susan, the funniest person I know — mama to Archie
  • Anna, the first funniest person I know who I am now adding because I’m a total jerk-face, just as I will mention below — mama to Potter, AKA Meatball, Pot Roast

All boys! I love baby boys!

I’m sure I’m forgetting someone. If it is you, I am so embarrassed and so sorry.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
I don’t…think so? Oh God, that would be even worse than forgetting someone on the last one.

5. What countries did you visit?
None. I’m poor, dudes.

6. What would you like to have in 2012 that you lacked in 2011?
More time hanging out with THE LAY-DEEEEEEEES. And maybe money? I don’t know. More financial security, however that looks. Yes, that.

7. What dates from 2011 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
February 25th, my last day at RVANews.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Getting my son to poop in the damn toilet. I’m also really proud of the writing I did for the RVANews parenting column.

9. What was your biggest failure?
I think I could’ve been a much better wife this year. Adjusting to life at home with JR and managing a resurgence of my anxiety and depression made things really, really hard at times. I’d like to do better next year.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Other than the brains, not really. Unless you count that time I sort of sprained my thumb lifting a laundry basket that was clearly too full of clothes.

(Life is different now.)

11. What was the best thing you bought?
Every bottle of nail polish that I impulsively tossed into the basket at CVS. When you’re broke, it’s the nicest little treat.

12. Where did most of your money go?
Mortgage, daycare/preschool fees. Probably Cook-Out. And maybe the nail polish.

13. What did you get really excited about?
Taking JR to his first movie.

14. What song will always remind you of 2011?
The Friday Night Lights theme song. TEXAS FOREVER.

15. Compared to this time last year, are you:
– happier or sadder? Both. I’m working in extremes these days.
– thinner or fatter? About the same.
– richer or poorer? Ha. Haha. Hahahahahaha.

16. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Chilling the eff out.

17. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Freaking the eff out.

18. How did you spend Christmas?
Christmas Eve with the in-laws. Christmas morning with my mom and sibs. Christmas night with my dad. And my boys were there for all of it, which was all I really wanted.

19. What was your favorite TV program?
Obviously, Friday Night Lights (TEXAS FOREVER AGAIN). And the IT Crowd, which is hilariously fantastic.

20. What were your favorite books of the year?
All of the books from the Song of Ice and Fire series that I’ve read so far. And The Hunger Games.

21. What was your favorite music from this year?
Guys, I love me some Gaga and always will.

22. What were your favorite films of the year?
I think I saw The King’s Speech at the beginning of this year, so I’ll say that. I seriously can’t remember what new movies I’ve seen this year. WHO AM I?

23. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 30 and we had a pizza party in Ross’s parent’s basement and watched Wet Hot American Summer. Apparently I thought I was turning 15.

24. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
Despite the hard stuff, I’m pretty satisfied with how this year went. Big changes happened, but things are good.

25. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2011?
Clean. Ish.

26. What kept you sane?
Zoloft. Coach and Tami Taylor. My husband. My incredible, wonderful, supportive, hilarious friends (both in real life and on the Twitters).

27. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011.
When people tell you they love you, believe them. Don’t fight it and love them back as hard as you possibly can.

Happy New Year, guys!

Tidings of great joy

Posting is sure to be light for the next few days. Working for a church means that things get pretty busy around Christmas — but in a really lovely way, really. Meanwhile, JR is very much aware of Christmas this year, so we’ve been spending a lot of time just being very, very excited.

So until I make it over here again, I’ll leave you with this, which still makes me tear up even though I’ve watched it more times than I can count…

And Merry Christmas to you and yours.

Oh, hi! (and other stuffs)

I’ve spent the last 10(ish) days battling a sore-throat-sinus-attack-chest-cold-thing. I haven’t really been resting; I’ve mostly been walking around moaning and coughing up…things that are gross. I finally went to the doctor on Monday and was put on one of them fancy Z-pack things and ordered to load up on Mucinex. Oh and to actually take a nap.

Since I’ve been doing that, I haven’t really had it in me to put together a coherent post about anything, so here are some bullets from my mind. YOU MIGHT CALL THEM MIND BULLETS.

  • Ross and I are about to finish season 6 of The West Wing. I’ve decided that Toby Ziegler is my spirit animal.
  • JR has taken to insisting that we call him “JR Spider-man.” He also calls me “Mama Spider-man.” When he’s not calling me that, he’s calling me “Little Mama”.
  • (I don’t know either.)
  • We’ve started drinking Manhattans which are delicious but dangerous. Delicious because of the booze, dangerous because there are cherries at the bottom, and I just end up pounding the drink so I can get the cherries faster.
  • I’ve been doing an Advent activity with JR where we have a wee Bible lesson every day and then hang a corresponding ornament on his little tree. Yesterday we talked about original sin. Turns out that’s kind of a hard concept for a toddler to understand because he spent the rest of the day telling me that eating apples is bad.
  • I slept until 9 this morning and didn’t get out of bed until 11. Grandparents are the shizz-nit.
  • I still haven’t the leaves in our front yard. DEAL WITH IT, NEIGHBORS.

Music moment

I’m not a big music fan. I mean, I *like* it and I’ll listen to pretty much anything, but oftentimes I’m just as happy sitting in silence.

But I have a few life moments that are unavoidably attached to a specific song. With JR’s third (!!!) birthday coming up, one keeps popping up in my mind.

In early March 2008, I was in the car on the way back to the office with a pregnancy test sitting in the seat beside me. This song came on the radio, the background music to my tearful whispers of “Please, please, please…” And I will always connect it to the moments before I found out that I was going to be a mama.

Do you have a song/moment like that? I’d love to hear about it.

For those who haven’t gone through it

A few days after I began the Prozac, I woke up one morning, and I felt fine.

Here’s the thing: up until that day, I had never felt fine. Not ever. I didn’t know what “fine” was. I thought I did; I thought there were periods when I thought I was doing quite well. I thought the Prozac was treating a relatively recent development in my emotional state. And then I woke up that day, and I realized that this was normal, and this was how I was supposed to feel all the time. And it was utterly, utterly new to me.

It was as if I had spent my entire life hearing a constant thrumming sound in the background, a percussive rhythm that became part of the fabric of my life. And then I woke up to silence, and I had no idea what silence was. And I could think, without all that noise.

Yes. That.

For me, those words perfectly articulate the difference I’m currently experiencing between treating depression and not treating depression. It might not be the same for others facing this condition/disease/struggle/whatever you want to call it, but I think it gives good insight — especially for friends and family who are trying understand what their loved one is going through.

Read the whole post here. And then read all of Alice’s posts because she’s fantastic.

(Side note: I know I have not done this month’s letter to JR. First I was left alone with The Child for 4 days/3 nights and then pizza tried to kill me. I’ll explain later.)

Busy as a really boring bee

I would like to say that I’ve been off doing lots of fabulous and fantastic things but…well…I’ve just kinda been doing…stuff. My “thing”, I guess you could say.

Highlights:

Having dance parties.

Watching Tim Riggins. I mean, Friday Night Lights. Oh, who am I kidding, it’s all about Tim Riggins. Think Jordan Catalano but taller and in cowboy boots sometimes. And not a total douchebag.

Making feltboards (and accompanying accessories) for JR.

Reading A Game of Thrones. YES IT IS FANTASY WHAT OF IT.

Writing about depression (yes, AGAIN, I am such a buzzkill)

Watching every version of The Real Housewives (or as Ross calls it “Real Women Yelling At Each Other”).

What have you been up to?