Thursday, August 28, 2014

Until Now...

I didn't necessarily plan to take an almost 4 month break from my blog, my funny little piece of the web that I have dutifully kept going for 6 years now. However, once I finally did walk out of that office, and once the UHAUL was finally unloaded, and once my husband kissed us goodbye on my first official day as a housewife, I realized that what I needed was a break. After 6 years of supporting my family and almost 10 years in politics and 2 very hard years as a working Mom I was "plum worn out" as my grandmother said when I arrived at the ranch a few weeks later for my first little vacation.

So that's what this summer has been. One long beautiful, blissful break! I have avoided the computer at great length. I have gone to the park almost everyday. I have cooked and ate and done dishes. I have cleaned, unpacked and organized. And I have had so many snuggles with my moon pie. Not that it's always a picnic in the park home all day with a two hear old in a 100 yr old house that seems to think it should welcome every bug in the neighborhood on in while baking to 85 degrees by 5pm.

Bugs aside though it's been a glorious summer. And slowly day after day the years of pent up stress, worry, anxiety and to do lists have started to fall away. I learned that while it might seem like the work stress goes away as soon as you turn in your office key that it actually takes lots of time to physically recover from acute stress. Everyday I feel better. Everyday I have just a little bit more energy, a little more capacity to learn a new thing, remember my hobbies, be creative and get down on the floor for hours on end to play with my two year old.

And now finally, 4 months later, I suddenly wanted to blog. Not because I have tons of followers, or want to grow a business or have anything brilliant to say. But because I want to record this time and share it with those I love and friends I've made along the way.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Last Day

Today is my last day at work. I'm just about to start packing up my office. My emails have been sent, issue emails are drafted for all our staff, my goodbye lunch is quickly approaching and my darling Margot has dutifully completed her sticker chart of the days until Mommy stays home with her.
We are still crazy busy with the move but I wanted to pop in with some last pictures of my office for my memory keeping. I can't believe how many hours I have logged in this place and that as of tomorrow I will no longer wake up and rush to get out the door to come sit at this desk. 

Meanwhile my new "boss" has been busy telling me all the things we are going to do. "first Mama we have to pack and move, then we can play and play. I'm going to be the mama and you can cook with me and we'll make spaghetti"

And lastly look at this darling Easter dress. Somewhere in my camera is a nice family photo but meanwhile look at how grown up she is. 

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

moving on out (and a sneak peak at the Corvallis house)

hello blog friends, 
Long radio silence I know. The thing is I just couldn't bear to write one more, "still waiting for our house to sell" post. And silence seemed like the most manageable solution. But that is no longer the case since we are PENDING. We have very quickly gone from the what seemed to be never ending limbo to OMG we have so much to do in the next two weeks how are we ever going to get out of here. So now we are packing, sorting, taking things to Goodwill, pawning off furniture, doing those last minute doctor, dentist, car tune up, eye appointments before we move to a new town and have to find all knew dentist/doctor/auto shop etc. All while I wrap up work and say goodbye to my 8 year career in public policy.

We are also looking ahead and couldn't be more excited about getting to Corvallis. We have the most darling house waiting up there for us. Chris is so looking forward to a 10 minute commute to work. And me...I am in awe that I actually get to quite my job in less than 10 days! I think that first Monday morning when I don't have to be out of the house with a toddler by 7:30 am and Margot and I are chillin' in our jammies at 9:30 eating French toast it's finally going to really hit me. And I predict I will be feeling VERY HAPPY!!!

I think the next 10 days will be a whirl-wind and so the blogging will undoubtedly be spotty until we are moved in but I do want to share a couple of pictures of our new house. It's a 1926 Spanish revival bungalow just a few blocks from the downtown. And it's completely charming!

Darling right?! It is tiny, 1150 square feet and it's a completely different style than our last house. But I am looking forward to the decorating project and I'm so thrilled to be walking distance to the whole downtown, farmers market, library etc. 

So that's what's up over here. I'll make to pop in once we're moved. Till then its back to the to-do list!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

ya ya ya....

it's been a long time...yet again.

It almost felt like spring had finally sprung but then the rain came back....le sigh.

But rain or no rain the forsythia are out in full force which is at least a promise of spring.

Some warm sunny days brought a flurry of activity on the house front but still no offers.

While we wait I am trying to stay thoroughly distracted from thinking too much about it. Silly books, long walks and lots of hot baths and tea are good. But perhaps best of all are fun activities with Margot. This past weekend we took her to Portland and had a fun trip at the zoo with Chris' parents. Tuesday Margot and I went wedding dress shopping with a dear friend who's wedding we are going to be in and Margot oohed and awed over her flower girl dress. And last night we gave Margot her first hair cut.

It was definitely one of those "sob sob...where has my little baby gone" moments. 

I finally succumbed to all the hype and we got our first package of honest company diapers yesterday. We are already kind of obsessed. They are so cute! 

I loathe the change to Facebook's news feed format. Anyone else??? It's harder to read and much harder to quickly scroll through for the names I care about.

Easter is coming and I can't wait to go Easter basket shopping. I find Easter basket's ridiculously fun! I already have a few ideas. Easter dresses for Margot and I have been procured. Margot's is a darling thrift-ed baby gap dress. Pink with an ivory peter pan color and an ivory eyelet lace petticoat. Classic. Mine is an ivory cap sleeve shift dress with irregular black polka dots on major clearance at the j crew factory.

And lastly, "conscious un-cuppling"...there are no words.

Friday, March 14, 2014

The photo conundrum??? Help Please!

 Okay internet friends I need advice... I am trying to wrap my head around how to organize, store, print and catalog photos. I have something like 1000 photos from the past year on my computer and camera and I'm totally at a loss for how to deal with them.

How do you deal with photos? I think I'd like to have them sorted, weed through them and edit them all then maybe store them filed by year and month on disc and backed up on the web? maybe through picasa web albums?

I am also thinking of making a photo book for 2012 and 2013 in lieu of the traditional photo album with prints.

Margot January 2013, 14 months
Margot February 2013, 15 months

Margot and Chris, April 2013, 17 months

Then of course there is the question of the 1000+ photos on my i phone which are of course all still on my i phone. I am thinking about making magnets out of my instagram feed. Has anyone done this?

And how would you back up those?  

Thoughts? Advice? 
Margot and I Glacier National Park, July 2013, 20 months

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Margot says...

"I'm not a baby. I'm a little girl. My name is Margot. My nick name is Margot pants and I'm a moon pie!"

"Mama we need to pick up my kitchen because Miri dumped out my jar and it's a mess. Oh Mama you picked it up, thank you Mama, now Miri can come mess it up again!"

"I am not eating dinner. Just olives."

"Mama I like your pretty shirt with ruffles when I grow big and have boobies can I wear it?"

"I'm the Mama. I am going to work. Here is my baby you can take care of her for me while I go to work"

"Daddy is my best friend because he plays with me the best"

In response to us telling her it's time to get ready for bed and read a story, "Don't you mean two stories!"

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

From working mom to stay at home mom?

Last month marked my two year anniversary as a working Mom. After a standard three month maternity leave, most of which I spent in an exhausted confused haze, I returned to my full time+ job. At the time this decision was mostly financial but I was also fairly positive about it. Perhaps if money had not been an issue I wouldn't have come back only because it was so hard. Hard to leave my baby but more-so hard to figure out the pumping, and transporting and early meetings and late nights, juggling and sleep deprivation. The whole working Mom package was intimidating. But after a few months it was easier and I found that by May I was really happy. Sure I missed Margot and I always wished for a little more time with her, but I was loving my job, loving getting dressed up and out of the house and sitting down with coffee to work at a desk without spit up or screaming or nursing to interrupt me. We had an ideal situation, Margot spent every day with my Mom which, for me, removed all guilt. I knew my Mom took care of her just as well, if not better, than I would. And personally there were things in my career I really wanted to accomplish. So when our financial situation changed a couple of months later and staying at home was suddenly a financial option I chose to keep working. I was in the middle of a huge campaign and I loved all the people and issues I was working on.

But as Margot got older the hours away got harder. When she started talking about our situation I suddenly started to feel very different. Little phrases like, "I'm the Mama, I go to work, Nammy takes care of my baby" just broke my heart. Dragging her out of bed at the crack of dawn and putting her in a cold car when all she wanted to do was snuggle because I had an early meeting was horrid. And the daily greeting of "oh Mama, I missed you" and "don't leave me Mama, please stay with me" soon were becoming more than I could take. Work started to loose its appeal and I really started to question my decision. At this point we had already bought a more expensive house, we are still paying off law school loans and preschool was a looming expense. And suddenly I felt very very stuck. 

So when out of the blue came the opportunity to move to a new town, for Chris to take a more stable and secure job that he wanted, for me consider leaving my job...well the decision seemed blatantly obvious. Politics and I had a good run. I did the working Mom thing. Now it was time for a change. 

At some point in the not so distant future our house will sell and I will pack up my office and say goodbye to all my great friends and colleagues. I will leave my 9 years of political/policy work behind and will focus my time an energy solely on Chris and Margot, our house and our new community. I honestly don't really know what to expect. I have some ideas that I'm sure are naive and unrealistic about how it will be. I really hope I have more time to things I love like cooking, decorating and art. I hope that this removes a lot of the stress from our household. But regardless of the day to day I know that right now this is the best decision for our family. I'm sure I will work in some capacity in the future whether it's in politics or something else. But I am looking forward to some time and space to figure out what I would like that to be. Mostly though I am really grateful that we have this opportunity.