Friday, January 30, 2009

New Baby Pictures

Already a reader... Ahh... PROUD MAMA :)

Pretty proud of herself, sitting in her Big Girl Chair for the very first time.

Totally done with Mom and the camera when she realizes that the TV is on...

Don't ask me how it's comfortable to sleep like this. (And yes, my Christmas tree is still up. Deal with it.)

She even poses when she sleeps. And seems to subconsciously imitate her daddy a lot.

Grandpa loves to make her smile and giggle :)

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Briony is Two Months Old (belated)

Where is the time going??? And, more importantly, if I'm currently unemployed - why the heck did it take me an extra two weeks to write this post? :)

New Things This Month:
- Celebrating Briony's first Christmas
- Briony's first road trip, to Rock Lake to spend the weekend between Christmas and New Years with my mom's family
- Briony's first house party: New Years at our place
- Bringing Briony to the Moms Group I joined back in the fall
- First smile (December 26)
- First giggle (January 11)
- First immunizations (January 16)
- Our curious baby is discovering EVERYTHING, and getting so much better at playing in her gym and exercising her neck during 'tummy time'

Favourite Moments:
- Those first smiles and giggles melted my heart into a huge gooey puddle... I'll never, ever get tired of watching those expressions of absolute joy and delight on our daughter's face
- Watching people - especially Geoff and my dad - make all kinds of ridiculous faces in an attempt to get Briony giggling
- Having a baby with us for Christmas
- Taking Briony to the mall to go Christmas shopping with 'Auntie' Emily

Looking Forward To:
All the Christmases coming when Briony will understand what it's all about.



Okay, so I am having a heck of a time trying to find a Mommy Groove. I don't know if it's because this is all so new, because Geoff works shift work, because babies are totally unpredictable, because I'm trying to do too much, because I started school this week, or WHAT - but just when I feel like I've got it all figured out, I realize that I have nothing figured out at all.

Maybe it's not important to have a groove at all. Maybe flexibility is key to my future happiness. And that's okay. I think :)

Here's what I DO know:
- I love being a mom. Briony isn't a perfect baby, but she's perfect for me. Even on her fussy days, I love her to pieces and there's nowhere else I'd rather be than hanging out at home with her.
- I'd rather play with my baby than clean. No big surprise there. But I'm trying to see the clutter that piles up in here sometimes as evidence that I was being a good mom, rather than evidence of a wasted day.
- I really like being a student again. I'm finding this course super-interesting, and I love using my brain and learning new things that I can turn around and discuss with my classmates online.
- I need to get better at making time for my friends, and forcing myself on people when I'm feeling like I've been at home alone with a baby for too many days in a row.
- I need to keep eating well and start being a little more active. If I don't work hard at taking care of myself, no one will do it for me. And on that topic... I need to call and make an appointment to get a haircut and deal with these nasty cuticles. SHUDDER.
- I should really talk to Geoff about scheduling once-a-week Study Breaks where I can pack up my laptop and head over to Starbucks alone for an hour or two and fully concentrate on school.
- I am strong enough that this will NOT all fall apart next week when Geoff is working four consecutive shifts and my mom is having surgery - a huge fear of mine right now.

On a mostly unrelated note, Briony's head control is getting really good and so I tried her in her Bumbo chair for a few minutes today. She happened to be wearing a sweater and jeans and the combination of Big Girl Clothes + seeing her sitting there made me a tiny little bit teary. This time is just flying.


Slow, Slow Torture

There is nothing better than being productive in the morning and getting dinner together in the slow cooker for you to enjoy - sans effort - in the evening.

There is nothing worse than being at home and smelling that simmering deliciousness ALL DAY LONG...


Friday Smile

Yeah, I don't usually pass these along. But I got this forward from my mom today (via my grandma) and it made me laugh so hard that I had to.


One morning the husband returns after several hours of fishing and decides to take a nap. Although not familiar with the lake, the wife decides to take the boat out. She motors out a short distance, anchors, and reads her book.

Along comes a Game Warden in his boat. He pulls up alongside the woman and says, 'Good morning, Ma'am. What are you doing?'
'Reading a book,' she replies, (thinking, 'Isn't that obvious?')
'You're in a Restricted Fishing Area,' he informs her
'I'm sorry, officer, but I'm not fishing. I'm reading'

'Yes, but you have all the equipment. For all I know you could start at any moment. I'll have to take you in and write you up.'

'For reading a book,' she replies,

'You're in a Restricted Fishing Area,' he informs her again, 'I'm sorry, officer, but I'm not fishing. I'm reading'

'Yes, but you have all the equipment. For all I know you could start at any moment. I'll have to take you in and write you up.'

'If you do that, I'll have to charge you with Sexual assault, 'says the woman.

'But I haven't even touched you,' says the game warden.

'That's true, but you have all the equipment. For all I know you could start at any moment.'

'Have a nice day ma'am,' and he left.

MORAL: Never argue with a woman who reads. It's likely she can also think.

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Monday, January 26, 2009

Snuggle Bug

Amber sent my this 'improvement' to the photo of Briony that I posted last week. Way to put all your graphic design education to good use, Amber (hehe).

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Monday Smile

So I couldn't find a postcard on PostSecret this week that jumped out at me. I wasn't sure what to do... Until Geoff shared this picture with me, and I decided that instead of a Monday Secret, we're going to have a Monday Smile this week. I thought you'd all be okay with that :)

Wishing you a *great* week!


Sunday, January 25, 2009

Top 40 Challenge

Your mission for this week, should you choose to accept it, is simple. Read this post, and then comment and tell me what you learned about me through taking a peek at my playlist. Then do the same thing - for yourself - on your blog or Facebook page. (Or just share your answers here so that I can be amused by them :)

TOP 40

Turn on your iPod (or whatever you have) and hit shuffle. Write down the first 40 songs that come up, and then answer 10 questions about them.

Rock & Roll Is Dead - Lenny Kravitz
Fell In Love With A Boy - Joss Stone
Everything Is Everything - Lauryn Hill
Champagne Supernova - Oasis
God Put A Smile Upon Your Face - Coldplay
Linger - The Cranberries
Billie Jean - Chris Cornell
Set The Fire To The Third Bar - Snow Patrol f Martha Wainwright
Mercy - Duffy
Come As You Are - Nirvana
Fading Like A Flower - Roxette
How To Save A Life - The Fray
Creep - Radiohead
The Way I Are - Timbaland f Keri Hilson
Hometown Glory - Adele
Black Horse And The Cherry Tree - KT Tunstall
You'll Think Of Me - Keith Urban
You Oughta Know - Alanis Morissette
Don't Look Back In Anger - Oasis
Piece Of My Heart - Melissa Etheridge
Love Lockdown - Kanye West
Cry Me A River - Justin Timberlake
Rock Your Body - Michael Jackson vs Justin Timberlake
Heartbreaker - Pat Benatar
Sometimes You Can't Make It On Your Own - U2
Mr Cab Driver - Lenny Kravitz
Super Duper Love (Are You Diggin On Me) - Joss Stone
Love Revolution - Lenny Kravitz
Can't Take My Eyes Off Of You - Lauryn Hill
Here Comes The Rain Again - Annie Lennox
Tell Me Bout It - Joss Stone
Yellow - Coldplay
Secret - Madonna
Chasing Cars - Snow Patrol
Apologize - Timbaland f One Republic
How Come You Don't Call Me - Alicia Keys f Justin Timberlake
On The Radio - Nelly Furtado
Let It Rock - Kevin Rudolf f Lil Wayne
Almost Unreal - Roxette
Billie Jean - David Cook

Which song on this list...

Makes you think of a friend?
Obviously, if I've seen any of these bands or performers in concert, then those songs remind me of the people I went to the concert with. Other than that... I'd say that 'How To Save A Life' reminds me of Mel and the girls, because our band learned that song last year and there are lots of memories tied up in that - happy and sad.

Makes you think of more than a friend?
'Chasing Cars' always makes me think about Geoff because we were dating when that song was played five times an hour on the radio by law.

Makes you dance?
All things Timbaland.

Makes you sing in the car?
Um, most of them. But Roxette is always the worst offender. You know that if we've ever been on a road trip together. (Amber, ask Orv about the Heart-fest he endured on the way to Jason's cabin a couple of summers ago... hehe. What a gentleman.) Oh, and I'm entirely convinced that I *am* Martha Wainwright in that Snow Patrol song.

Makes you remember something great?
All the Lenny Kravitz stuff, and you know why. BEST CONCERT EVER, even though my entire body felt like some sort of sadistic science experiment before, during, and after.

Makes you laugh?
Definitely 'Creep' because of all our Cocoon karaoke parties, and the thousands of times that song has been performed there.

Surprised you?
'Billie Jean' because it appears to be on my list twice... And neither time by Michael Jackson :)

Embarrassed you?
The Keith Urban song. It's all Emily's fault, and nobody was supposed to know.

Any overall observations?
Yep. I appear to be living about a decade behind the rest of the world :)

Anything you want to say in your defense?
Nope. If you hate my music, then don't ride in my car. It's really quite simple.


Dear Universe

Dear Universe

This is just getting stupid already.

Last week, we got the news about my mom's upcoming surgery, which was really, really disappointing. Everything in my life has just been a little bit magnified since then (code for 'over-reacting' and being way too emotional, I realize) because I'm feeling a little bit raw.

And now I feel like you've been messing with me a little this weekend. I packed up B on Friday to come and spend Friday and Saturday with my parents, because Geoff was working nights all weekend anyway. Yesterday, when I packed up and tried to go home, I realized that I didn't have my house key - and Geoff was already at work. So we unpacked and stayed another night. Then there was The Vomit Incident. And now, when I packed up and tried to go home this afternoon, my car wouldn't start. And not even my dad's mad car-boosting skills could fix it. So we unpacked and settled in for the afternoon (alone, because my parents had tickets for the curling finals this afternoon).

By the time my now plugged-in car is ready to go, Geoff will be leaving for work yet again... And I miss him. I'm finished with this single parent thing. Universe, you play MEAN TRICKS.

So please consider relenting, and being just a tiny bit nicer to me for the rest of this weekend. Even though it may seem like you've broken me and I'm very near tears... Mark my words, I will have the last laugh.

Lindsay M Wright

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The Joys of Mommyhood


So I've just about manage to clean up Briony's first projectile vomit experience. Oh my god, that was disgusting. Whether it's fortunate or unfortunate, I graciously received the majority of the mess. And it happened during a sleepover at my parents' place (Geoff is at work and we decided to come for a visit) - again, not sure if that's fortunate or unfortunate. I'm guessing that it was mostly fortunate for me and definitely unfortunate for my parents. It was nice to have my mom around to help, and to reassure me that it's normal and that my baby does not have some obscure and life-threatening puking disease.

Briony's cleaned up and sleeping. The majority of the splatter has been cleaned up. My second load of laundry is in the washer (yeah, TWO). I've showered. Now it's off to bed with wet hair (which will look AWESOME in the morning, but I'm way too tired to care right now).

This wasn't in any of my books... :)

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Friday, January 23, 2009

Friday Smile


Thursday, January 22, 2009

The Loneliest Little Burrito


Couch Potato

The longer I'm home, the more I appreciate the occasional brainlessness of television on DVD. I couldn't figure out why, because I've never been a really big television watcher, but I've realized that there are two reasons for this current madness:
1. Watching back-to-back episodes of anything makes you feel more invested in the characters, and they become some (admittedly sad) form of adult company when you're at home with a baby all day.
2. Watching television on DVD - instead of on television - bypasses all the commercials that I inevitably analyze because I'm hard-wired to think of everything through the lens of my work in advertising.

So I'm completely caught up on Entourage now. And I need to pick a new series... Preferably funny (whether it's on purpose or not - hehe). I have a few ideas - some that I watched but missed episodes of, and some that were recommended already. But I can't seem to decide. Probably because I don't really care enough.

Want to help? Please comment and leave your suggestions.

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I got my textbook in the mail today. And tomorrow, I can access the course site to start checking things out before the *official* start on Monday. I am sooo excited.


Getting Annoyed

I just finished up my weekly phone call to my obstetrician's office. Believe it or not, I am still waiting for an appointment date for my six-week checkup. (For those of you keeping track at home, Briony is nine weeks old and counting...)

Today, I finally got a date instead of just a 'you're on the list and we'll call you': February 20. Which is okay, except that we're in BC from February 17 to 25. Sigh. I explained that. But February 20 was the only opening they had, and they said they'd call me when they were booking checkups for March. ARGH.

I did some quick talking and explained that I really wanted to see a specialist rather than my family doctor because (sorry if this is too much information) I had a substantial episiotomy that is still pretty uncomfortable. Apparently, those were the magic words. They didn't get me an appointment, but the receptionist promised that she was moving me up to the top of the cancellation list. It will still be an 'on call' appointment, so I'm running the risk of waiting for hours - or having my appointment cancelled last minute - if someone goes into labour. But it's a step in the right direction.

In the meantime, I don't know if it's okay for me to start working out... I know that I am *technically* supposed to wait for a doctor's approval before I do, but if I might not see a doctor until Briony is four months old. That's a long way away. And I don't think I can live indefinitely with the reality of hating myself every time I'm close to a mirror (or every time I look down).

Okay. Thanks for letting me rant :)


Wednesday, January 21, 2009

A Little Adventure

Today, B and I went on an adventure. I packed her up and we headed over to Polo Park for our very first attempt at a Stars & Strollers movie.

She did GREAT. Actually, she was sleeping by the end of the trailers, and proceeded to sleep until the lights came back on at the end of the movie. We walked over to the mall and I fed her before we did a little mall walking (ahem, SHOPPING) and then headed for home before she started getting grumpy. I'm so happy about how the afternoon went, because this is a very nice field trip option for us on Wednesdays when it's yucky outside and we're getting bored at home.

As a sidenote, the movie we saw was Marley & Me. It was super cute. Very simple, and I liked it a lot.

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End of an Era

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Good News

In the midst of yesterday's spirit of hope and change and all of those good things, my phone rang... It was the University of Victoria, letting me know that someone had dropped out of the January course - and that I was welcome to the spot. Apparently, the person ahead of me on the wait list was missing the prerequisite course (that I completed back in 2002).

So my tuition is paid, my books are on order - and I go back to school on Monday!


Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Yes We Did

Some appropriately deep-ish thoughts to come tomorrow, if I can find ten minutes in a row to attempt to record them.

In the meantime... I parked Briony in front of the television with me for most of the day. I know that she doesn't understand, but it was still important to me that - someday - I'll be able to explain it all to her, and that she'll know that she was a part of that moment. I explained it to her today, but she just kept on smiling and making baby sounds (and then falling asleep - can't really blame her, because that was one LONG parade). Then we had a great evening hosting a little Inauguration Party, featuring Sloppy Joe Bidens and a veggie platter (with Barack-oli, naturally). For dessert? Cupcakes We Can Believe In.

Yeah, that's right.

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Monday, January 19, 2009

Monday Secret

Chant with me now...


Sunday, January 18, 2009

Sunday Afternoon

Just hanging out in her gym...

I alternate between thinking these overalls are the cutest thing ever, and getting sad because they make her look so old.

Yeah, I'm going with 'cutest thing ever' :)


The Price of Fear

So remember how excited I was about finishing school this year? Confession time. I got cold feet. I started worrying about how I'd managing being a mom and being a student, and I made myself a little crazy thinking about how long it's been since I took a course or wrote a paper. I got scared. And I did nothing about it.

This afternoon, I decided to face my fear (thanks, Erin!), and I ventured onto the university's website... Where I discovered that my course for the winter semester is full.

I'll be honest. I cried a little bit. I guess I really did want to do this.

I'm the second person on the wait list - and if I'm truly determined, I can take another class in its place next semester (which would be busy, but I could make it work).

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Mommy's Night Out

So yesterday was Girls Night Out, in honour of Emily's 29th birthday (a for real 29, not an attempt to be cute). We spent the evening at Celebrations, watching a dinner theatre spoof of Sex and the City. It was fun... But I had a sudden random deluge of foreign mommy feelings that I hadn't experienced before.

I'd been looking forward to this night out for weeks. Actually, Emily made me promise I'd come when I was probably five months pregnant. I secured my parents as babysitters (Geoff was working), and we booked the tickets. But when it was actually time to get ready... I didn't want to go. I went, of course. But the entire time I was sitting there, I just wanted to get home and snuggle my baby girl.

I think that part of that urge was just the insecurity of being OUT. I couldn't find anything to wear that I didn't feel totally disgusting in, I didn't have time to do my hair like I normally would have, and I definitely hadn't had time for a nap. I had to scrounge around to find a purse at the last second, when I realized that I'd been carrying a diaper bag - and only a diaper bag - for two months. And when I got there, I felt dull - this horrible and terrifying feeling that I had absolutely nothing to contribute to a conversation that was about any topic under the sun other than BABY. When I talked, I'm pretty sure that's what I talked about - because my entire world right now is Briony. I was even boring and annoying myself. That's never a good sign.

I had a good time. I was just surprised by all the feelings and insecurities that came out, and I'm still processing what the heck happened inside of my head.

Sigh. It will get easier, I'm sure. For today, I'm happy to be back at home. Briony doesn't care about my post-baby tummy. And she is the best little cuddle buddy. As long as I feed her and change her, I'm pretty sure she thinks I am perfect.

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Saturday, January 17, 2009

For The Record

I threw out yesterday's coffee and made a fresh pot today. Just needed to let you all know that :)


Quiz: Which Office Character Are You?

The Socializer: Happy hours, office parties and long lunches. You're totally a social butterfly and work is just one more outlet. Yeah, you get done what you need to get done, but you don't think twice about work when the favorite part of the day is hanging out with your coworkers, pulling some pranks, and taking long lunches. Be careful your work doesn't suffer and you don't make a bad impression. You want to leave with some good references eventually!

Well, I don't think I can *totally* disagree with this. But I'd like to think that I get a heck of a lot of work done in between my chatter. And yes, I'll admit that I talk my way through most of a typical work day. Right, Christine? Oh, I miss you. A thousand stupid little things happen in my life every day that just don't get shared anymore because no one else is polite enough to listen to me get all dramatic about each and every one of them... hehe.


Friday, January 16, 2009

Fibro News

Big news today in the fibromyalgia community... Just a short time after the first two drugs to be indicated specifically for fibro treatment came on the market, the American FDA has approved a third. I haven't been able to try any of these options out - I got pregnant pretty much as soon as that could have been an option - but it's nice to know that so much progress is being made. It gives me HOPE (even as I'm choosing to try the organic diet and exercise route again). When you've had that feeling of being backed into a corner, news like this makes you see that there are options and other things to try.

If you're interested, you can read about it here.

I'm not sure exactly when the whole diet-and-exercise plan will come into effect here. I'm half following it already. I just need to be mentally ready to start it full-force - I've done it before, so I know what a huge commitment it is. I'll keep you posted! It will be soon...


Happy(ish) and Healthy

So we survived Briony's two month immunizations today. Sigh. She only cried a little. I only cried a little. I consider it to have been a success - and I'm *so* glad that we have two months to recover before we have to do it all over again.

The big news is that I have a big girl. She's up to 12 lbs 14.5 oz and 24 in long (from 8 lbs 0 oz and 21.5 in long at birth). That puts her right at the 95th percentile for weight, and above the 95th percentile for height. And it definitely explains why my arms are so sore! The doctor is so pleased with how she's progressing - she's hitting all her milestones early, and is incredibly healthy and well-proportioned. It made me a very proud mama :)


Friday Smile

Barack Obama's Inauguration Speech

My fellow Americans, today is a colourful day. You have shown the world that "hope" is not just another word for "duck", and that "change" is not only something we can believe in again, but something we can actually jump.

Today we celebrate, but let there be no mistake – America faces strenuous and beautiful challenges like never before. Our economy is green. Americans can barely afford their mortgages, let alone have enough money left over for clouds. Our healthcare system is tiny. If your pinky finger is sick and you don't have insurance, you might as well call a used car salesman. And America's image overseas is tarnished like a clump of dirt SUV. But scratching together we can right this ship, and set a course for Philadelphia.

Finally, I must thank my scary family, my shiny campaign volunteers, but most of all, I want to thank Oprah for making this historic occasion possible. Of course, I must also thank you, President Bush, for years of laughing the American people. Without your crazy efforts, none of this would have been possible.


Create your own Obama Inauguration Speech here. What could be better? Politics - awesome. Mad Libs - awesome. Best Friday Smile in a long time, if you ask me :)

If you create your own, please share with the rest of the class...

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Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Growing Up (Too) Fast

It was indeed a quiet day at home. I managed to tackle the task of going through Briony's closet - putting away all the newborn stuff (sniff, sniff) and a bunch of her 0-3 month stuff. And then I hauled out all the 3-6 month stuff and made sure that it's all ready to go. This girl is growing like a weed... In the loveliest possible way, of course :)

While I worked, my baby girl (aka George) was hanging out in her crib - 'talking' to her mobile and smiling whenever I was talking to her. She is seriously the funniest thing ever. As much as it made me sad to be packing up her newborn baby things, I wouldn't trade this sweet and giggly Briony for anything.


Things No One Warned Me About: Laziness

Twice this week, I have microwaved old coffee (from the previous day) instead of brewing a new pot. And I'm kind of a coffee snob. That's bad.


Baby, It's Cold Outside

Unless you have lived in Manitoba, you have no idea what 'winter' means. It gets damn cold here. Cold enough that people literally cannot leave their houses - we cancel plans and shut down schools because your skin can freeze so quickly that it's just not safe. Forget accidentally double-booking yourself... The biggest plan-killer here is the weather.

My plans for today have been shut down. And then I decided against my secondary plans because they would have required me to go outside. Instead, I showered and changed out of my pyjamas and into some sweats. Mat leave is RIDICULOUS some days.

So now Geoff is napping upstairs. Briony is napping downstairs. I've managed to clean up the remnants of last night's baby shower (put on by all of Geoff's coworkers), half-organized Briony's closet (she's going to be moving up a size imminently), and dug around in my cupboards for the ingredients I needed to mix up a massive batch of chili in my slow cooker. I fully intend to be productive for another hour or two, and then cocoon myself in a blanket on the couch for the rest of the evening.

To me, the funniest part of all of this is that I have no idea if it's *actually* super-super-cold out there or not, because I haven't been outside since yesterday morning. It was pretty cold then. I'm totally trusting (a) the Firefox weather thingy on the bottom of my internet browser, and (b) other people's weather-related Facebook status lines.

As a related side note... Geoff and I had CNN on this morning, and one of their top stories of the day is the 'deep freeze' that's being felt across most of the US. The temperatures in some of the central states are as low as -40 F (I literally have *no* idea how cold that is, and I'm too lazy to Google a conversion). They happened to have Winnipeg on their big American map, and we were showing an impressively low -58 F (again, this number is meaningless, apart from the fact that it was reported in a news story about how freaking cold it is outside). The reporter acknowledged the number, then commented, 'But once you're down to -40, it's really all the same.' It made us both laugh out loud. Even with a solid 20 degree difference, they just have to win, hey?


Tuesday, January 13, 2009

New Baby Pictures

I've posted a few new pictures of Briony. I cannot believe how quickly she is growing and changing... I'm so proud of her. She's such a social little girl, and it's so much fun to watch her interacting with everything that enters her space - both 'real' friends and those of the stuffed variety. An official two month update is coming soon :)


Monday, January 12, 2009

Things No One Warned Me About: Old People

Yesterday morning at church, a sweet and well-meaning old lady came to make a big fuss over how beautiful Briony was... And then proceeded to ask me if I was expecting again. I'm not going to get over that one any time soon.


Monday Secret


Sunday, January 11, 2009

The Most Beautiful Thing

Geoff and Briony and I have been enjoying a quiet day at home. Geoff and Briony were cuddling on the couch and he was making faces at her and making her smile... And then those smiles turned to her first full-on giggles. We missed catching them on video, but the camera is sitting there and ready to go for the next time :)

This video is from just a few seconds after the giggles stopped. Don't mind the documentary on typography that's playing in the background. I know, I know... We are *so* super cool.

Photo and video editing at

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Saturday, January 10, 2009

20 Random Things

Jobina tagged me on Facebook, but I'm responding here instead...

Here are the rules: Once you've been tagged, you are supposed to write a note with 20 random things, facts, habits or goals about you. At the end choose 20 people to be tagged. You have to tag the person who tagged you. If I tagged you, it's because I want to know more about you.

1. I re-read books, which is how I justify my book collection that is threatening to overtake our home office - affectionately known as 'Lindsay's library.' Some of my favourites have easily been enjoyed twenty times and counting.

2. I love (and I mean *love*) the movie The American President. Yep, that one - straight out of the 90s, starring Michael Douglas and Annette Bening. I don't know why. I just do.

3. I met my husband online, and I'm so sick of some people's reactions when they find that out. I can't imagine my life without him in it, and I don't know how else our paths would have ever crossed. It's a beautiful way to begin to fall in love with someone.

4. I always intended to become a high school english and performing arts teacher, and pursued that goal right up to and including three student teaching placements while in university working on my B.Ed.

5. I got pregnant with our daughter while I was on birth control. I've now become that cautionary tale you tell your teenage children to scare them.

6. I have lived with rheumatoid arthritis since I was 10 years old, and fibromyalgia since I was 22. I woudn't recommend either one.

7. My career in advertising was entirely accidental. When I was 19, I took a summer job at an ad agency that was supposed to involve filing and answering phones. The writer called in sick right before the content for a client's website was due. Someone asked if I wanted to try writing it. And the rest is history.

8. I have never, ever dated a guy my own age - always older. My husband is seven and a half years older than me, and I think the difference is perfect.

9. I'm a very good proofreader. And unless I'm at work and getting paid to do it, I consider it to be a curse - EVERYTHING bugs me and I just want to fix it.

10. When I was 21, I decided to sign up for Joints in Motion, a program that raises money for arthritis research. Since then, I've raised almost $25,000 and completed a full marathon in Bermuda, a half marathon in Switzerland, and a 10K in Greece.

11. I drink an ungodly amount of coffee. Mostly Starbucks. I could have purchased a small country for the amount of money I've left in that place. And I don't regret a single delicious drop.

12. I love to cook, but I HATE to clean up (fortunately, Geoff doesn't mind doing the dishes). I love to pack for a trip, but I HATE to unpack (and often don't for weeks after I get home). I love to decorate for Christmas, but I HATE putting it all away (my tree sometimes stays up until the beginning of February). Hmmm... See #15.

13. Nothing makes me happier than crossing things off a list I made on a post-it note. I like it so much that I usually add one or two things to the list that I've already done, just so that I can cross them off right away.

14. I'm a Christian, but that label embarrasses me. I think that Christians have a long track record of being incredibly un-Christ-like and I *hate* being associated with that. Not that I think I'm better... I think I just realize that I'm so very UNlike Christ that I have no business playing God or pretending to understand what's right or wrong for other people. My faith is intensely personal.

15. One of the great joys in my life is starting a project. I get super-excited about it and love to plan it out and organize it - but by the time it's 90% done, I'm so over it and want to move on to the next new thing.

16. Last year was the toughest year of my life, but the happiest. I don't really expect that to make sense to people.

17. I would love to be Stacy on What Not To Wear. Getting paid to criticize people is pretty much my dream job. And then there's always a happy ending when you see them looking and feeling so awesome at the end of the episode. I couldn't dream of anything more.

18. I have almost zero tolerance for fake people and superficial friendships. I honestly believe that the best, most interesting people are those who have experienced true disappointment and challenges in their lives. It makes you multidimensional, forces you to become compassionate, and shapes your world view. I think it's beautiful.

19. I have been blogging for more than six years, but I have never managed to keep up a journal. I'm not sure what that says about me.

20. I sleep on my stomach (shut up, I know it's bad), and it was an especially cruel form of torture for me to be forced onto my side while I was pregnant.

I tag nobody, but if you're reading this and have a couple of spare minutes, I'd love to read lists from ALL of you :)


Friday Smile

Cute Things Falling Asleep


Wednesday, January 07, 2009

The Beginning of the End

My mom finished radiation yesterday. I cried off and on all day - happy tears, for a change. This is truly the beginning of the end. For the first time, my mom can HEAL (and not just heal enough for them to hit her with the next round of not-fun treatments). She still has lots and lots of healing to do - and a surgery scheduled for February 4 - but today was big and important.

My cousin Shelly made my mom, Briony, and Chloe matching hats for when they were presumably all bald... And then Chloe was born with a full head of hair. Anyway. We decided to take the picture of the three of them on this most auspicious occasion: just an hour after my mom finished radiation.

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Urgent Prayer Request

This just landed in my inbox...

As many or all of you may know, in August of this year Jim Schapansky was hospitalized and was found to have a cancerous tumour located in his brain. Emergency surgery was performed to remove the golf-ball sized tumour, and later that month aggressive chemo and radiation therapy were started.

Recently Jim has been to the doctor and received the news that not only has the treatment been ineffective, Jim goes as far to say that the drugs were fertilizer for the cancer. His tumour has more than tripled in size. He has decreased movement in his left arm and leg as well as constant headaches which are only dulled by massage.

Jim has a appointment scheduled with the surgeon TODAY at 1:30 PM (Central Time for those of you in other time zones) to decide whether or not an operation is possible. If a surgery is not possible, which is likely, the cancer would continue its deadly and destructive course, something that Jim has "come to terms with". Unfortunately, many of his friends and family have not come to terms with this quite yet.

The purpose of this email is to ask you for your help. I ask not for money, nor food, nor gifts. I ask merely for your heart. I ask that you keep Jim, Helen, Joanne and Steven in your hearts and in your prayers throughout this very crucial and critical day. If you could please pray for Jim, his family, and his doctors, we can make a difference. No. I will rephrase that: HE can make a difference. The God that healed the lame, the blind, the deaf, the mute, the dead, the demon possessed, the sick; He can heal Jim.

If it is possible, at 1:30 if we could stop whatever we are doing and devote ourselves completely to praying especially for Jim and his surgeon, for as long as you feel necessary or better yet: as long as possible.

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Monday, January 05, 2009

The Perfect Storm

Yeah, you caught me. Put the waterboard away - I'll confess. I'm totally avoiding my own blog. A great start to a new year, hey?

I don't want this to turn into a depressing space, and I don't want to ever be less than honest on here - and so I chose silence. The truth is that I'm overwhelmed. It's not Briony - she's awesome. I have an incredibly easy baby who spends most of her days being happy and most of her nights fast asleep (seven or eight hour stretches of sleep at night are the norm at our house). And I *love* being her mom. It's the rest of my life that isn't making very much sense right now. Everything feels like it's been turned upside-down, and it was inevitable that I'd start to feel the stress of this change. I hate change. Even good change.

This period of new motherhood is an absolute bitch for someone who has battled an eating disorder. I should have expected it, I realize, but I didn't. (And I suspect I may be breaking some sort of new mommy code by admitting to it publicly. Am I out of the club now?)

I honestly thought that it was safely tucked away in my past, never to be seen or heard from again. But I have realized that the combination of the excess weight + losing control over my life in general + dealing with some post-partum depression is a classic recipe for disaster. It's really the perfect storm. I've been able to be strong and fight it off so far, but it's a poison that is in my head every moment of every day. It's exhausting. But I refuse to let it win, not with a little girl living in my house now. I refuse to let that be any part of her world.

But it's so very, very hard. And I've probably made it harder than it needed to be by keeping my mouth shut and trying to deal with it myself (always a *stellar* plan, don't you think?).

In spite of everything, today was a good day. I apologized to Geoff last night about the bitchy, horrible alter ego of a wife he's been forced to endure lately - which helped to ease some of the tension around here. And after a semi-productive morning at home, Briony and I went to HSC with my parents for my mom's third-last radiation appointment this afternoon. Then we came home and I actually made a proper dinner. But in the spirit of fortunately/unfortunately, my car has a *completely* flat tire, which has totally messed with my plans for tomorrow: our first Moms Group meeting in over a month, and then lunch at Kristen's. Grrr.

A happy post on here soon. That's the plan. But until I can write one honestly, I think I'll go back to cuddling my baby and watching Entourage :)


Monday Secret