Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Reality? Check.

So, remember how I read Jen Hatmaker's book 7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess" and how I was all:
 "I'm going to recycle more!" 
"I'm going to use reusable bags everywhere I go!" 
"I'm buying local!" 
"I'm going to pause several times a day to make space for God!"
"I'm going to use tupperware and no more paper towels!"
"I'm going to block off a certain time for media!"
"I'm not shopping again!"

And then I got in my Jillian phase where I was all "I'm going to work out three days a week at 5 a.m.!"

I kind of hate that girl right now. 

She was so on top of things and healthy and disciplined and perfect. 
It's part of why reading other people's blogs is so hard for me because I start comparing myself to them and thinking "Gosh, I probably need to do whatever they're dong." Not good.

Maybe it was just the newness of January. Maybe it was the hopefulness of a new, undefiled goal, so new it couldn't be unmet yet. Whatever it was, it's gone now. Just about every part of it. I'm not sure what happened. Maybe just life? I just couldn't do it all all the time. 

So I'm not exercising and I'm not pausing and I'm not buying less plastic, and I'm (gasp!) using paper towels. And here's the thing: IT'S OKAY. It's a season. Some days I need to choose other priorities over those things. Some weeks, I just need to buy easy meals so that we can eat together as a family and not experience the stress of trying to figure out what the hell to do with the overabundance of collard greens in my fridge. Some days, I need to spend time in the Word in the mornings more than I need to work out (and most mornings it can't be both). Sometimes, it's just worth the extra plastic to buy the onions pre-cut so that I can have dinner on the table in time. In other words, it's okay to be human--my mantra for my 30s. 

It's also okay to shoot for the moon and make it, to be on top of things and disciplined and healthy. Those are really, really good things. In fact, I really, really want to get back to that and am taking some steps in that direction. But, for everything there's a season, and right now, I just don't have it all together. And that's okay. 

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Three Things Thursday

Thing one:
Twice in the last week I've mistaken a little boy for a little girl; once I put my foot in my mouth about it.  To my credit, though, both boys were in bubble onesies with cable knit off-white sweaters buttoned only at the top button. Sorry to all you truly, truly Southern women out there, but those outfits just screamed GIRL. I know I grew up in the South too, but honestly, I don't get the whole dress-a-boy-like-a-girl thing.  I'm not into smocked clothes, bubble onesies with high socks, sailor suits, monograms or lacy collars on boys. Southern blasphemy! But it's true. To each his (or her) own, but I like my boy to look like a little man. I like him a little dirty with worn spots on his knees where he's been playing too hard, and stains on his shirt that tell me he's taking hold of life and not letting go; I like the lived in look. But that's just me.

Thing two:
I've abandoned Zora Neale Hurston's autobiography for Suzanne Collins' Catching Fire. I know, I know. So pedestrian. How could I possibly exchange caviar for cheese fries? But sometimes a girl's just gotta have some easy reading. Before you throw me to the brain-candy-reading gods, rest assured that I look forward to getting back to Hurston's book soon!

Thing three:

At least once a day, Moo asks (very nicely, I might add) to vacuum the floors. Let's just say my floors have never been so clean. Well, maybe not clean since I still hate to mop. But at least my floors are dirt-free, which works out pretty well considering some of every meal ends up on the floor these days. The best part: he has an absolute MELTDOWN when we have to stop. Biggest fit he ever throws, biggest tears he ever sheds. Over the vacuum. Poor kid needs a playmate. 

Thing extra: 
Did I tell you about the day Moo refused to take off the hat Phil got him from Ecuador? He even ate dinner in it and cried, cried, cried when he took it off and couldn't get it back on. Hilarious! Phil decided to join in the hat craze fun:

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Moo Update: 15 months

This little guy continues to move, amaze, surprise, exhaust, and thrill us. We're grateful to share our lives with him. 

In no particular order, here's what he's into these days:
  • Likes to "hide"in nooks and crannies around our house--under a desk, in a closet, etc.
  • Obsessed with the songs "The Wheels on the Bus," "Head and Shoudlers, Knees and Toes," and "Bean Bag Rock" and prefers that I sing them as a medley, switching songs on his command. :)
  • Loves to be outside and often goes to the door, knocks, and tries to turn the handle
  • Says probably 40 words that I can understand (and sometimes others can understand) including Mama, Dada, moon (or "noon," as he says), ball, dog, Jesus, cheese, knock, night-night, eggs, and lots of family and friends' names
  • Sleeps 11+ hours at night 
  • Has 8 teeth
  • Still loves all things wheels--especially strollers, lawn mowers, and anything else that's technically too big for him to push
  • Really into tractors and busses right now
  • Several times a day, he looks at the TV (which is off), says "Dada" and starts cheering. He's seen his Daddy watch one too many intense football games this season!
  • Helps me make breakfast every morning. Not just watch. Help. Adding cheese, stirring something in a bowl, pushing the buttons on the blender for a smoothie. There's no "You go play while Mommy makes breakfast" at our house, but that's okay. I like a man who can cook.
  • Loves stuffed and real animals
  • Loves to throw balls and then chase them
  • Obsessed with helping me do laundry and vacuum
  • Is walking as of 14 months
  • Prefers nudity to wearing clothes (even in the winter)
  • Is OFF BOTTLES--hallelujah!
  • Pretty much down to one nap
  • Can identify the letters "O," "Q," and "S" on the alphabet fridge magnets
  • Has learned to "fist bump"--the cooler alternative to high fives
  • Loves to snuggle and watch Baby Einstein movies before he goes to sleep
  • Favorite foods: guacamole, yogurt, bread, pancakes, waffles, eggs, meat of any kind, clementines, bananas, black beans, chips and crackers
  • Has started looking at books on his own and turning the pages like he's reading
  • Loves to dance and will often start bobbing even when there's no music playing
  • Splashes and kicks in the bath until everything is thoroughly doused, and wants a bubble bath every night

Friday, February 8, 2013

Five Things Friday

Thing one: 
After Moo eyes my cup of coffee and lurches for it:
ME: That's Mommy's drink. You can't have it. It's my coffee and it's hot.
MOO: fake coughs (cough-ee, right Mom?)
ME: Smarty pants.

Thing two:
Date nights have become date days over here. We realized that we were paying someone to sit on our couch while our kid slept, so now we start our dates at 4 and come home by 7 or 8, which means the sitter is earning her money and we can still fit in a movie before crashing for the night. It's like getting a 6-hour date! Not bad. It does mean that we're that couple that eats dinner out at 5:30, but at least it's not crowded then. We're embracing it.

Thing three:
Just picked up Zora Neale Hurston's autobiography, Dust Tracks on A Road. I'm embarrassed to admit that I've never made it through Their Eyes Were Watching God, but I'm somehow fascinated by this woman all the same. Interested to read her life story.

Thing four:
Downton Abbey, you're overly-dramatic and borderline ridiculous at times, but I love you.

Thing five:
Had a few hours to myself this week and decided to hit up some thrift stores to fill in a few gaps in Moo's wardrobe. Remind me never to shop for children's clothes anywhere but a thrift store ever again. If I have the time to weed through everything, I can find some gems, folks. For a dollar each. Or 75 cents on Wednesdays. Man, I love a deal.

Friday, February 1, 2013


So, a couple of weeks ago, we got our first box of produce from Freshfully, and let me tell you, it was a fabulous experience. I went to my designated pick-up location and my labeled box was sitting there waiting for me. The produce was well-preserved and packed, and I was so excited about our box that I forgot to take a picture of it before putting it all away in the fridge. This is pretty much what it looked like, though:

In our box: kale, 6 apples, a green pepper, 2 potatoes, a sweet potato, a turnip, lettuce, LOTS of collared greens, and some pecans. Let's just say all these greens forced me to be creative and hospitable. We ate up the lettuce without a problem between sandwiches and salads. We love green peppers, so that little sucker was gone in a day or two. We ate two of the apples during the week and put the others in a homemade apple-pear cobbler (delicious--I added pears to the recipe). I roasted the potatoes, sweet potato, and turnip with a sliced onion, olive oil and salt and pepper and served it over a green salad with a homemade dressing. Click here for the recipe I based that on. I also put kale into the green salad. The rest of the kale (and there's still some in my fridge) went several places: on sandwiches, pureed and added to ricotta cheese for Moo, and in smoothies. As for the pecans, they're still in my pantry, but they last for a while and I'll use them eventually.

So that leaves the collared greens. People, I've lived in the South my whole life, but have NEVER eaten or cooked collared greens. Ever. They're a little scary. And stinky. But I wasn't about to let them go to waste, and I'm always up for trying something once. Since I had so much of it, I invited several people over and added it to our dinner menu--a little risky, but they were close friends so I wasn't too worried. I wanted to steer clear of the traditional way of cooking it (boiling, smothering in butter, adding ham hock) because that seemed to take all the nutrients out of it, so I found this recipe for sauteing instead and it turned out well. The added bacon is key and I would also recommend a little butter. That being said, collared greens aren't my favorite. I still have some in my fridge staring back at my every day (they're still in perfect condition). I wonder if I could add them to smoothies? Seems like smoothies cover over a multitude of sins. We'll see.

I'll definitely be buying a freshfully box again, but maybe every other week since we couldn't consume everything fast enough--even after having people over to help us with it!