Wednesday, January 30, 2013


We just got back from a great trip to The Big Island with Blue's family.  We spent 10 days in the sun alternating between relaxing/playing and chasing our little crawler around in the sand/water.

Have I mentioned that Marek LOVEs to swim?  Blue took him on his first swimming lesson just before he deployed with Marek was 2.5 months old.  He likes it more and more everytime we take him and Hawaii wasn't any different.  Now he actually tries to get away from us so he can swim on his own, its really hard to hold on to his slippery little body in the water!

I didn't think much about our Hawaii trip last year until we got to the security line at the airport to fly home... then it all hit me.  This is where my bad contractions started last year...  I remember curling up in a ball in the security line and debating wether to get on the plane or go to the hospital.  I ultimately made the right choice to get home and ended up going to the hospital 2 days later.

Most of the time its hard to remember back to how hard pregnancy was, or even how hard infertility was.  There are still alot of triggers that take me back (and by surprise) but most of the time I'm a pretty in the moment momma.

I'm so thankful for this little miracle and getting to be the one that pulls the rocks out of his mouth and holds on for dear life as he tries to swim away from me in the ocean!

Playing with Sand...

Eating Sand....
Eating Rocks....

Totally oblivious to the Seaturtle at his feet, wishing he was eating sand or rocks...


Monday, January 14, 2013

"Does that mean camels are ugly?"

I watched my niece and nephew this weekend (4 and 6, respectively) while my sister-in-law took a class.  We were driving down the road and the subject of camels came up, hoping to share a little trivia, I asked them if they knew what camel humps were made of.  They suggested water (as most people assume) and I shared that they are actually made of fat.

My nephew was quiet for a minute then asked, “Does that mean camels are ugly?”

What a profound question! I’ve always wondered when societal prejudices/stereotypes start effecting how children look at the world and I guess the answer is before the age of 6…

I paused for a minute (while my mind was busy being blown!) and responded with this.  “I don’t think being fat or skinny makes you beautiful.  I think that one camel would think another camel looked strange if it didn’t have humps at all.”  We left the discussion at that.

Hind sight is 20/20 of course but I really wish I hadn’t suggested that looking different made you ugly.  I want my children to understand that beauty is a function of who you are, not how you look, but how do you explain that to your child when they throw something like that at you?  With an adult I feel like we could have had a long discussion about societal conventions of beauty but with a kid you need to put it into a few sentences and how is that possible when you’re not expecting it?

Maybe the answer is the Socratic method… maybe if I were a perfect parent/aunt the conversation would have gone like this:

Nephew - “Does that make camels ugly?”
Me - “What do you think makes a camel beautiful?”
Nephew – “Its fur? Its long legs?”
Me – “What about bears?  Is a black bear more beautiful than a brown bear or a polar bear?”
Nephew – “Polar bears need more fat to stay warm than other bears so maybe fat is prettier on them because they need it?”
Me- “What if a polar bear had 3 cubs instead of 2 and had to share some extra food and so they were skinnier than normal, would that make them uglier?”
Nephew – “No because they were taking care of their family.”
Me – “What do you think makes a human beautiful?”
Nephew – “Their hair/weight/eyes (fill-in-the-blank physical attribute).”
Me – “What about the way they act or how they treat their friends and family? Are they still beautiful if they are mean?”

And so the conversation goes…  Maybe Socrates had the right idea, let them come to their own conclusions with just a little guidance in the questions. Maybe at the end my nephew would still think that fat humans are uglier humans than skinny ones, but maybe I could have changed his view of the world? 

In the end I’m just glad I got to have that conversation before Marek was 6 years old, it reminded me how important it is to let him know everyday that he is beautiful and that I am beautiful, because we are ourselves and there is no one else out there like us.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Christmas and New Years 2012

I plan to do a full 2012 look back soon but for now I figured I’ll give you a little run down on Christmas and New Years!

Little Crawler

Our little buddy started crawling 2 days before Christmas (7 months, 3 weeks old).  He’d been up on his knees rocking back and forth, scooting backwards, turning circles, etc for a whole month but didn’t quite pull off the coordinated forward crawl until he got the right motivation…. Christmas presents!  After the initial coordinated crawl it only took him 3 days to be able to go where ever he wanted, even on slippery hard wood.  I think he’s a little too independent for my taste…

My family’s tradition is for the whole family to get together Christmas eve, so the whole 25 person family came to our house, ate Mexican food and laughed.  We had a few close friends join us too, including S.I.F. and a friend of ours who did IVF 5 weeks after us.  It was so fun to see Marek and her son together and Auntie S.I.F. loved having both boys to snuggle.

Auntie S.I.F. and her boys

Marek was incredibly patient for all the photo ops I subjected him to.  I found these fun Christmas head bands at Joanns and some how he tolerated each one long enough for me to get cute pics!

Merry Christmas!

Santa's Reindeer

Two days after Christmas Marek managed to get slap face, AKA fifths disease (and possibly stomach flu, jury is still out if the slap face caused those symptoms or not?)  He then proceeded to give it to my mom, who gave it to my nephew, S.I.F., and another friend who we spent New Years eve with…  By some miracle Blue and I never got it (despite getting puked on, in the face…)  So the new year was rung in with way more vomit than normal!

We spend NYE out “at the lake” (my parent’s house.)  We cross-country skied, ice skated, drank brandy ices, set off gobs of fireworks, hung out around the bon fire on the lake, spent hours working on a 1000 piece puzzle, played cards and of course ate Black Eyed Peas for good luck.

Hanging out by the fire watching fireworks!

Family Tub Time with his cousin
 It was a great 2012!