Thursday, October 30, 2008

Uh oh. Mama was impulsive.

And just couldn't take the hair in the face or the food in the hair in the face anymore. However, she failed to take into account the many cowlicks, the inability of a toddler to keep her head straight for more than two seconds, or the apparently unusual shape of her daughter's forehead.

Mimi saw the results and concluded: "I'm a big girl now." Then she ate her chicken soup without any her hair in her face. Mama doesn't quite feel sick about it, but has a new found respect for children's hairdressers.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

'Tis the Season...

Amelia's grandma stopped by this afternoon with a costume she found at the Goodwill! I think it looks hilarious, and am glad Amelia is eager to amuse us by wearing it. Actually, she is loving it, and I have to admit that it's nice to hear her barking in place of all the meowing she usually does. She keeps announcing, "I'm a dog now!" Jeff has been taking her through the doggy paces of fetching things with her mouth, jumping up on people, etc. I'm glad he's leaving out all of the crude and awkward things dogs spend much of their time doing.

Arf! Arf!

Monday, October 27, 2008

It's easy to confuse Christianity with pregnancy:

"Mama, I have a baby in my heart!"

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

"It" Happens...

I had no idea I would be due for another Most Embarassing Moment so soon. And it wasn't even last night when we were eating out-- Amelia was yelling at our server while she was with another table, "HEY LAAAADY! I'M HUUUNGRYYYY!" That was embarrassing, but not too bad.

I was having one of those days today-- hoping I wouldn't run into anyone I know, just trying to fly below the radar while letting Amelia get out of the house. We went to our favorite kids consignment store, where I let her wander around and play while I was looking through things. There were a lot of ladies there, and I heard one of them, laughing, say "Hey, where's your mom?" Of course I identified myself right away and asked what was going on. She said Amelia had lost her pants. No big deal, but it's not really like her to just take them off for no reason. Then Amelia walked around the corner with her pants around her ankles, beaming. "I pooped!" Oh, no you didn't! Oh, yes,she did! She had made her not-so-little deposit in one of the kids potties on display.
This was already enough, but the store owner didn't even laugh when I told her (in front of many people) what had happened. In all of my routine humiliations, I don't remember the last time I blushed so badly that my eyes watered. She gave me a key to the bathroom, to take care of it. Then I ended up wandering around the courtyard with a giant potty and a toddler trying to figure out where the bathroom was. Someone came out of their store and told me it was all the way around the block. So we marched over there. And of course there were construction workers working on the sidewalk right in front of it. Of course it was occupied, so we had to hang out there with the laborers and our big pot of stink.
We cleaned up, returned the potty to the store, bought something as a courtesy and got out of there! Amelia was quite proud of herself, which I'm glad for-- no need to maker her feel bad as well! Anyway, This is just one of those things that you have to share so that people can just laugh and redeem the mortification. Enjoy.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Our Big Event

On Saturday evening we had a party. There was no real occasion, so we blamed it on the fact that our house turned 100 this year. I guess it was more like a housewarming, since we never had one and wanted to just have everyone over all at once. We had a really nice turnout-- 30 adults and about 25 kids! The weather was perfect, so that we could spend most of the evening outside (in jackets) as planned.

Although there were plenty of people to feed, this was the most stress-free party I've ever hosted! I was determined from the beginning to not feel the compulsion to have anything perfect, and to make the goal to be FUN (for us especially,) nothing else. I made two huge batches of soup, lots of popcorn and hot cider. Guests brought beer, wine and desserts, and there was more than enough of everything for everyone. I took the plunge and rented the plates, bowls and glasses, then borrowed forks and spoons. I cannot tell you how nice it was to rent the dishes-- all I had to do was give the bowls and plates a quick rinse, and I am returning them today!

The nicest part of the event was having Jeff, his dad, and a couple of friends play music for everyone. We have a firepit in our yard, and we picked up some hay bales for extra seating (to be used for bunnies and chickens later.) Everyone gathered around the fire, chatted and listened to the music. So fun, so fall. I'll share some pictures that Jeff's parents took.

We're Glad You're Here!
Now, Have Some Soup:
Curried Pumpkin with Coconut Milk
Potato Cheese
It's official, this house will soon get a paint job, thanks to the city of Portland!
Putting this patio in was our biggest summer project. And it was free-- we took stepping stone pavers from all over the yard, got some free pea gravel on CL, and went for it, thinking of the potential for a fall party!

It was a lot of fun to have so many kids over and to watch them get to know each other...
Of course, Amelia had a blast. She's been telling strangers about our party for weeks-- "We having a party at our house. Be kids there. Be music there. Be lots of fun!" Here she is with her cousin Piper. She kept bursting into groups waving and shouting "Hi everybody!!!"
This was the first time in about ten years that Jeff and his dad got a chance to play music together again-- what a treat for everyone!

This was so much fun, we're thinking we will do it again next year. It was also a nice moment to look around and see that we have some very lovely people in our lives.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Feeling Quite Conscious of my Subconscious....

I have a pretty active dreamlife. Most nights, I have a dream (or several) that I can remember in the morning. While this is sometimes something I dislike-- my in-sleep episodes can be extremely stressful-- I sometimes gain insight about myself through these visions. For example, I may be "playing nice" with a difficult person in real life, but in my dreams I'll really let them have it. Or I will act out in my dreams in other ways that betray the way I'm really feeling deep down-- good information! It can be really useful.

Last night my dream was not necessarily helpful in terms of information, but extremely pleasant and telling. I dreamt that I met these two really nice ladies who were massage therapists. They were very caring and one of them gave me a long massage (this took up most of the dream) while they both chatted with me in a really kind manner. Afterward, the other one told me that we should trade massage services each week, although some weeks she would like to just give me a massage and I didn't need to reciprocate. Then, the funniest and best part of the dream was that I would have to walk a ways to get back to my car, but they said, "Oh, Honey, we don't want you to have to walk all that way. You need rest-- we'd like to wheel you back to your car on a gurney!"

I woke up feeling good and encouraged, but also kind of embarassed that this is what I'm dreaming about. Last week, I also dreamt that someone came over and cleaned for me-- of particular note was the thorough mopping of my floors! I'm kind of hoping that tonight I may be prepared a fancy meal...

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Let's Get This Party Started!

So, everything with the massage space went through this weekend, and I am in high- gear in terms of moving in, setting up, marketing, etc. I will technically have office hours this coming week.

A little info about the place. It is in a pilates studio called Imago Dei in a nice neighborhood (Sellwood) near us. A friend of mine who is a movement therapist works there, and made the connection for me. In addition to pilates, they offer body reconciliation sessions (think psychotherapy using movement, related to issues of our experience with our bodies) and there is another massage therapist and an esthetician working independently as well.

The owner opened the studio with the intention of having a ministry to women who are survivors of childhood sexual abuse, and there is an understanding that this is the most important part of what goes on in the studio. I think it's so wonderful to find a place that is more committed to helping with body issues and whole person health than strictly making someone look good or feel pampered.I also think this is a really good fit for my practice, since the type of bodywork I do is more orthopedically oriented versus relaxing/ soothing massage. The fact that the demographic is interested in growing and changing and addressing problems on a physical level is perfect, and I hope to be a good match for them.

The room I am renting is very small, but still bigger than the room I'd been squeezing some people into at home, and I think it will turn out nicely. It has been stressful to be buying things for a business that has yet to make any money. I wish I could just go shopping and have fun with it, but this is REAL money, I still have to pay for everything! Hopefully it won't take too long to get a reliable amount of work, and we can start enjoying making money on this! I am really excited to finally have my own practice, it seems too good to be real. I will try to put up some photos soon.

Friday, October 03, 2008

General Updates...

Amelia is sick again, although at least there is no fever or blisters, so far. Just a chest cold. Fortunately, I have a big pot of chicken stock ready for action, and she's been drinking tea with herbal elixirs and raw honey all day. I'll do anything to try to make this quick!

Things are going full-bore for Jeff at work, and this will be a very busy year for him. He works at two different locations each day M- W, with a total of 5 work places, not including home visits. We are SO glad for the truck, which has also bumped up Jeff's testosterone levels a bit. (Don't hate me for writing that, Baby!) We never call each other 'baby'.

I am in the very final phase of negotiating on a space for my massage practice. I'll wait until I actually move in to tell you about it. We're supposed to get the key tomorrow and paint, but I have hit a very big bump in the road as of yesterday, and this one IS a "deal breaker." So either we'll get it all taken care of and be open for business in a week, or we'll be starting at square one again. If I don't get the space, the greatest loss will be all of the stress it has caused for me-- I really hope it goes through! Also, I just got a box full of marketing materials in the mail today, and I hope I get to use them-- they have the studio's name and address printed on them.

We're throwing a big party in a couple of weeks, and we're so excited! We only wish that all of our 'old' friends and family could come-- only I can't complain, since it's looking like 40+ people will be squeezing into our yard. I am praying hard for no rain that day!

Our house didn't get painted this summer, but there is a good reason for that. There is a grant for lower income (that's us!) homeowners with small children in Portland that have lead paint on their old houses. We applied and qualified, and it looks like we are going to get up to $10,000 of "lead abatement" done on our house by the city this year in the form of stripping and painting and anything else that needs to happen-- our old windows have already been replaced, so they don't need to do that one. We are SO THRILLED! I don't know when the painting will be done, especially since we're entering the rainy season that lasts most of the year, but we are having an inspection done this week and will be able to find out more then.

My health is about the same although made a bit worse by additional stress, and we're still trying to solve some mysteries related to Jeff's odd medical issues. Prayers in that department would be great. That's all of our not-so-big news for now...