Thursday, April 28, 2011


Thanks for sticking with me - working full-time and raising two babies have taken all of my energy lately.

We went to Cleveland this past weekend for Easter. It was nice to come home to my mother. She and my dad took good care of us all - preparing good meals, taking care of Jack and Jossie and letting me nap. I love afternoon naps. 

I continue to kid that my parents built their new house by planning the ultimate kitchen and then building the rest of the house around it. This is pretty much how we spent the weekend:

We reunited with our nannyshare friends, who have recently moved to a beautiful historic home in Cleveland. Jack was in seventh heaven, with his best bud Nate and cousin Andrew.

Our Easter holiday continues to get livelier and louder as the grandchildren get older. This was our holiday two years ago:

And here we are today:

Blogging to resume shortly. I hope me posting cute pictures today will entice you to stay.

I will add one more thought: Jeremy and I had a date Monday night at this Cleveland gastropub, with my parents keeping the kids at home. As I finished getting ready for our night out and walked out into my mom's kitchen, I saw Jossie happily swinging in her baby swing and watching the evening news with my dad. Jack was underfoot, begging for Easter candy. I looked at my mom and Jeremy and said tearfully, "We're so far away from the hospital."

I know I need to get over myself, but our January experience is still so real to me. I think about my mom being with me in the hospital, and I remember resting my head against the NICU window, looking at the bleak winter sky, and saying, "It has to get better than this."

And, thank goodness (and God), it has. Oh, it has.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

What I know

I've started and stopped a handful of blog posts in the past week. Much like my life, my blogging needs some focus. I've been back at work for a bit more than a week now and am moving through each day - babies, work, home, volunteer, sleep a few hours and then repeat.

Here's what I know and am trying to focus on as I take on each new day:

Worrying ain't worth the gray hairs. I'm learning how to work smarter and more efficiently at work - trying to get myself out of the details and I'm grateful for an employer who supports this transition. 

Glad my friends and family still speak to me. Even when I go weeks without calling, they still love me.

I'm thankful for my profession. I'm a better mom because I'm a working mom - I readily admit this. (And it doesn't hurt that we have an awesome caregiver for Jack and Jossie.) I'm glad my work is in the nonprofit sector and while I'm not making a million dollars, believing in what I do means a great deal to me.

Baths are good. I'm not talking about the ones where you wrestle a wet three-year-old, trying to rinse the shampoo out of his hair. I'm talking about the Mommy-only time. Thanks to a special friend for giving this tired mama some great bath bubbles and reminding me to take a moment to myself.

My babies are still more joy than work. Having a preschooler and a newborn is just plain hard.  Jack and Jossie can absolutely beat Jeremy and me up. Sometimes after we've gotten everyone to bed and put away all of the toys, we cannot believe how tired and worn-out we are. And then one of them will call out for us, and we respond. We will always respond.

Kicking myself for not finding this blog sooner. How has this existed and me not knowing about it?

Frittatas are the best brunch food ever for entertaining. This is a food blog after all. Frittatas are truly the perfect food for entertaining - they are impressive-looking, relatively easy to make and can be served hot or room temperature. Brilliant! Here's my current favorite.

I'm glad I decided to take a chance on a blind date. Jeremy and I met 14 years ago this May on a miniature golf blind date at the Par King. I loved him when he was 19, and I really love him now as he turns 33 Friday (and I'm not just saying that because we share a mortgage, two kids and one really fat cat).

I love my really fat cat. Enough said.

                                                                                                                                                                            Photo by Jack.

Friday, April 1, 2011

So.... I am. Back at work. It's almost like this crescendo building as I walk to the L, high-five my favorite CTA worker, take the train, ride up the elevator with a woman who I tell it's my first day back and she wishes me good luck, walk through the door of my office and plop down at my desk. So.

I think I need a round of the glad game to get me through this day:

  • The love and support of Jeremy, who is taking a half-day today to be with the kiddos this afternoon.
  • The love and support of my family and friends.
  • My son who keeps me laughing with his antics - this morning, all of his toothbrushes (he has three - don't ask) were furry. I asked why. He told me, "I brushed Roscoe!"
  • My sweet baby girl who slept from 8:30 p.m. to 3 a.m. last night and who had a really good morning today.
  • A wonderfully warm workplace that supports family life. AND today is filing and pizza day, my favorite day of the year.
  • The promise of milder temperatures and sunshine tomorrow. Jeremy and I are already planning for breakfast at Xoco and an afternoon outing to the Chicago Botanic Garden with Jack and Jossie.
  • The Internet for shopping - I'm trying to buy everything online as a working mom of two - groceries, baby supplies, you name it. Even with shipping, I honestly think it will cost me less in the long-run - no impulse-buying. I'll let you know how it goes.
One of my co-workers asked me how I was doing this morning. When she asked me the same question three years ago, after my return from maternity leave with Jack, I burst into tears. I'm holding my own better today. I do have some strong emotions about the work I'm faced with - I left so early I didn't have to time to plan for my maternity leave and get things organized. And this is the last place I was before being admitted to the hospital. I'm working through all of that and taking things one day at a time.