Monday, June 29, 2009

Future Pronator

Getting a jump start on her running career.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

The Gosselins: an apology and some thoughts

It's Sunday night after the week of our vacation and we're home from a really great church service during which Todd preached again on temptation. Ironically, I'm now watching "Jon & Kate + 8" and reflecting on the precarious nature of marriage. I was blissfully away from the news last week when Kate filed for divorce. And I know that I recently blogged about her hair - something I now think was a trifling thing to do. I apologize for doing so, especially since this has been a week for me to think about how under attack marriages are these days.

It's been a rough week for marriage. And I can't say that mine was exempt. Not just an hour ago I was short and rude with my husband who was simply trying to get out of the house for a run. I was selfish and "harpy", something Kate Gosselin has been accused of being towards her husband in the few episodes I've seen of their reality tv show. I admit I've often thought her truly brassy and caustic. In AA there is an old saying, "you spot it, you got it." This seems to plague me when I'm working with female clients. There have been numerous times when I've been repelled by a woman who seems controlling, fear-based and manipulative. Hmmm, how ironic: those are all character defects that I wrestle with consistently in my marriage.

Watching the episode in which they finally bring up their marital issues (accusations of affairs, different paths in life, the stress of the media, etc.) is like watching a tough marital session. I truly feel compassion for both of the Gosselins. I'm sure that when they first agreed to do their reality show, they counted it a blessing and would never have banked on the fact that it might have been their very demise.

Tonight in church the worship team performed the song "Slow Fade" by Casting Crowns. You can go check out the lyrics but the gist of it is that most of us don't just implode one takes a long time for us to fade into separation and sin. While watching this episode I told Russ that I want us to always be evaluating our marriage and striving hard to fight for it. I think we're both acutely aware (may we always be) that marriages don't die in one day.

Jon mentions in the episode that he and Kate have no real friendship anymore. And, wow - can't you relate to that? I have one little baby and I have to work so hard at a friendship with Russ. We both strive to maintain laughter, deep talks, faith, fun and everything else that friendship entails. I can't imagine us looking for time and sweetness together with 8 kids in between!

Jon also continues to say "I have to do what's best for my kids." Oh Jon, I just want to grab you and shake you. I talk to so many people who believe that divorce is far better for their children than the agony of working through the problems in their marriage. And, please forgive me for being so candid and crass: that is bullshit. I have to share this because I have personally been privy to marriages that have survived adultery, addiction, lies, betrayal, illness, tragedy, death of children, cancer, financial ruin...and their kids are the better for it. What a gift to give your children! Fight for your marriage and show them what God can do with death - He brings new life!

I'm preachin' now and I know it. I'm just lil' ole me in Dallas, Texas and there's nothing new I can say on this subject. But if I had their ear I'd tell them that there is no amount of money or security that is worth their marriage. Remember all the reasons you entered into the craziness of having 8 children. Remember the values that kept you from choosing to deem which ones you'd keep and abort. Cling to the fact that "He who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it." Man, we need God to stay married. It's such a scary crapshoot some days.

So I am officially praying for these two. It looks bleak, especially now that papers have been filed. I'm greiving for them, all 10 of them. May God keep watch over you guys.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Things I Swear By: Baby Addition, newborns

While searching for nursery ideas for Johnna I was reminded of how tough it was to try to register for my first baby. Walking into Babies R Us and staring up into the great wall of bottles felt like I was visiting another country whose language I didn't speak. So I thought I'd throw my 2 cents into cyberspace to see if anyone cares! This addition of "Things I Swear By" is for babies in infancy.

First of all, we couldn't have gotten Davy home from the hospital without the Kiddopotamus' Snuzzler (see above). I remember convincing Russ to go get it the week before she was born and he was all, "Nah. We won't need it." But when we put Lil' Bit into the car seat there at Baylor Hospital, she looked so tiny and I was so grateful for the Snuzzler. It kept her from flopping all around on that precarious (to me) drive home. We used it for the first 3 months.

The Boppy was also immediately put to use. There are other pillows like Boppy, I'd just suggest getting something to help you breastfeed so that your back isn't killing you from slumping over your little one. *Even if you aren't planning on breastfeeding, the Boppy will save your arms - and Dad's arms as well!

Thank you to the Davidsons for loaning us their Fisher Price Nature's Touch Cradle Swing! Davy is now 20 pounds and she STILL loves to sit in the swing after breakfast. When she was just a smidge of a girl she would take naps in it. (note: most retailers will tell you not to do this - as if you're going to wake up that baby to go put them in the crib!)


(for breastfeeding moms) There is NO way I would have made it through the past 10 months without this pump, the Medela Pump in Style. If you are forced to buy it for yourself, I would suggest that it might possibly be the best investment you'll make. Whether you are going back to work or not, this pump will ensure that even if you need to leave your baby with a sitter at the last minute, you can still pump a bottle's worth of food in just a few minutes. As I've increased my workload, this pump has also allowed me to keep my milk supply up. (Aren't you glad you stopped by here today?)

Oh people, we would be lost today were it not for baby blankets from Gymboree. We received one as a gift (along with MYRIADs of other blankets, all good ones) and something about the softness, the stretchiness, not to mention the adorableness of this blanket just made it so easy to swaddle Davy. We immediately began calling it "The Blanket." As in, "wait, where's The Blanket? These others don't work." I've since purchased several more. I think at least 3 are in her crib with her now. Anyone who has held Davy knows that if she's crying, just give her The Blanket and she'll hold it up to her face lovingly and calm right down.

I'm purposely not mentioning diapers or bottles here. We are Pampers and Medela bottle people but I promise every baby seems different in these areas - or, to be fair, every mommy has her own preferences! I'd welcome input from you on what you couldn't live without when your baby was an infant! I only had time for so many! More to come for older babies soon...

Friday, June 12, 2009

Some Nights are Just Good Nights...

It was yellow tonight in Dallas as we labored under a tornado warning. If by laboring I mean: watched two good movies over two bottles of wine with my husband.

Simple pleasures: we found out that Davy loves grape popsicles. We sat on the front porch and watched the sky go from yellow to orange to gold. Then we quoted Robert Frost's "Nothing Gold Can Stay." Russ said, "Stay golden, Ponyboy." Which just made me love him more.

Sometimes you just gotta rejoice in the little things, you know?

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Beautiful Marriage

I know, it's feast or famine here at Bookmark This Page. I'm feeling a little better this week. So! I bring you this lovely song. You know from this post that I love Coldplay's "Viva La Vida".

This arrangement of "Viva La Vida" paired with Taylor Swift's "Love Story" is so beautiful. Even better is the explanation near the end of why Jon Schmidt married the two. Miss Davy was screaming her head off in her crib but when I played this for her, she began dancing.

Thanks, Kat Bennet!

It's Not Like She's Jennifer Aniston

Gang, can we talk about Kate Gosselin?* You know, of Jon & Kate + 8 infamy? Bless her heart. (There, I said, "bless her heart" which is Southern for "now I'm gonna gossip but it will all be done out of care & concern.")

I'm not going to harp on the lunacy of doing reality television and then wondering why your marriage is breaking up. And I'm not going to say anything condemning about complaining about paparazzi when you've subjected all eight of your children to almost zero privacy during their formative years. They had some major bills to pay and major pressure to provide for their family, I know.

I just wanna talk about her hair.

I don't know about you, but when the season opener aired, I tuned in to see that Kate's figure looks excellent (she's been very open about the plastic surgery she had to repair her tummy after all those bambinos) and that she was tan and had some serious French Manicure going on. But I kept thinking, "who is her publicist, stylist, or friend?" Will no one tell her how awful that haircut is? Then I went online and saw that people are actually going in to their salons and asking for the Kate Gosselin 'do.

Is it just me, y'all? I felt the same way about Kristin's hair last season on Biggest Loser:

I loved her personality and she looks so much cuter than this now...but the hair. Ladies, the skunk streak was always your hair stylist's desire to put his/her hair show talent into works. It should never have gotten popular.

But far, far worse than the streaks is the reverse mullet:

I forgave her for this the first few seasons of the show but now I'm concerned. I thought, "well, that's just some mom hair or maybe she's from a small town." But. The spikiness is just not flattering at. all. Please, please comb that part down. A nice bob would look lovely on her. Go for the bob, people!

I know I'm being terribly snarky and cruel in this post. I really feel for the Gosselins, especially since it would appear that they are both hurting and seem to see no way out of this hit to their marriage. I really think fame can be detrimental to people.

But the hair.

*this post is dedicated to Stacy Mangold, who will appreciate it.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Opnions Needed!

I need some help. The other night while driving to Gloria's on Greenville to meet Emily for dinner, I happened to see this chair on the side of the road. I stopped, reversed, took a good look, then decided I needed a second opinion. After a margarita for us both, Emily came back with me and gave her approval on the chair. It had potential.

Since then it's been sitting on my back porch and I've yet to even wipe it off because I wanted to see if I'd still find it appealing in any way. Sometimes I just don't trust my own taste.

My question is what would you do to this chair? It is black leather with nailhead work on the sides. The chairback is damaged with some wear and tear at the top. Would you restore the leather? Recover it? Would you DIY or get it recovered professionally? What kind of fabric would you use?

Thanks, friends. My design friend Missy is in Africa this month. I'm thinking that she won't be checking my blog being that she's getting a microfinance company off the ground in the Sudan. Wah. She really needs priorities.