Sunday, December 09, 2007

chew chew snore

one night ryan was SO tired he could hardly stay awake (we've all seen that before!) but i just wanted to share the video of that. worth a smile at least. :)

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

God's living room

at the dinner table tonight we sat and held hands to pray, like we always do. and lauryn says the prayer (kinda like she always does) and it went a little something like this:

God is good. Thank you for having us. God is in our hearts and in the sky and has really big furniture... (of course me and nathan start to laugh to ourselves then she outs us and says) ... and thank you for giggling... and for ponies and... it goes on for a while with random things and we finally have to sort of encourage her to end.

i just had to tell you about God's really big furniture in the sky. i thought that was funny.

Monday, November 12, 2007

fuming at fumento

i tried to email this letter to mr. fumento but it was returned to me. i feel i have no other choice but to write this open letter on my own blog. (hope you've found this, sir.)

mr. fumento,


as a parent who opposes the widespread and irresponsible administration of vaccinations, i came to your site to hear from the other side of the debate. (could it be true that thimersol is not at all harmful???)

i was willing and prepared to read your article about thimersol until i scrolled down and saw the photo you placed of Jenny McCarthy, indicating that her intellectual capacity was the same as her bra size.

how can anyone with even the tiniest amount of their own intellectual capacity take you seriously when you would use such immature and childish tactics to comment on your disapproval of Ms. McCarthy's opinions?

you may actually know what you're talking about, i give you that. but you show a complete lack of respect for other people's right to their opinion, and, by so doing, have forfeited your own.

why am i writing this tirade? you may delete this and never give it another thought. which would be expected.

i think i am hoping to show you that character assassination is not the way to promote your truth. disagree with ms. mccarthy if you choose. but please refrain from digging up old realities in an effort to frame a new one the way you want it to be seen. that is not the way of truth.


Thursday, November 08, 2007

On Being Odorous

i smell like rained-on-dirt, onions and crushed leaves.

at least, my armpits do.

and it doesn't really bother me (like i would think it would). maybe i was french in a former life. who knows? but i'm starting to feel like we try too hard to smell like not the earth. i mean, granted, i don't think i'd want to smell everyone with that particular "color" body aroma all the time but on the flip side of that: the obsessive compulsive drive to smell like gardenias and jasmine and floaty yellow things has to be balanced somewhere with the acceptance of our rise from the brown earthiness from which all these other things grow too.

body odor, like so many other culturally uncomfortable things, are a part of life. one more thing to mask and cover up to pretend that we are flowers instead of people.

just a thought...

Thursday, October 18, 2007

one of the classics

first of all, i get the feeling that this post is really just something for me to read in a month or two when i have nothing to do and i feel like reading my own writing.

however, if you are not me and you're reading this - that's pretty amazing! welcome.

i just had to share the latest and greatest story as moms often do. and this way i'm not stopping every living, breathing thing to 'share' my oh-so-special story. it's just here and readily available to anyone who wants to know.

okay, setting the scene: wednesday morning, the little schoolhouse, nassau

it was circle time and miss helen was introducing the new topic of the week: compassion. does anybody know what compassion is? she asked. in her words: lauryn's hand shot up immediately. she thinks to herself oh, maybe she really does know what compassion is.

yes, lauryn? what is compassion?

I KNOW! says lauryn with all the enthusiasm and confidence of a brilliant mad-scientist four year old.

it's when you're allergic to somebody. she proudly announces.

in the other room, principal/kindergarten teacher - miss kara - laughs out loud: now that's a classic!

and in the sawyer household: it IS.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

leapster CrapStart

i'm about to go can-a-whoop-a$$ on the Leap Frog family of products, just so you know. (like you couldn't tell from my title.)

so i just watched an ad on TV for this leap frog "clickstart" (the title [of this entry] is clickable so you can see the product i'm wail on) and was - once again - disgusted by the shit that is going on with kids today. so the scene is a young boy, about age 3-ish and he's playing on this toy computer. the mom comes up and starts telling him that what he's really doing is learning his shapes. NAAAH! says the boy. the mom presses and tells him he's learning his colors (or something like that) and he says NAAAAAH! and still she pushes and says oh yes, you are learning (get ready for this, it's the big one)

all the stuff you're gonna need for preschool.

did you get that folks? stuff he's going to need FOR preschool.

are these people for real?? SERIOUSLY?! now we need to get our kids "ready for preschool"? it's PRE. SCHOOL. as in: previous to school. the dictionary defines "pre" as: prefix occurring originally in loanwords from Latin, where it meant “before” (preclude; prevent); applied freely as a prefix, with the meanings “prior to,” “in advance of,” “early,” “beforehand,” “before,” “in front of,” and with other figurative meanings (preschool; prewar; prepay: preoral; prefrontal)..

and school (which has many definitions but i've chosen the most applicable) as: 1. an institution where instruction is given, esp. to persons under college age: [eg.] The children are at school. and 2. any place, situation, etc. tending to teach anything.

now we need to get our kids READY for the school they go to, to get ready for more school? so now they need to have all their shapes, colors, numbers and letters down before they go the place that's already teaching this stuff way too early. this is just GREAT.

"Timmy, no pressure or anything but you need to make sure you are at the top of your game for preschool. Can't be a slacker, you know. It's tough out there... So how about them shapes and numbers then." And the best part? Mommy doesn't have to be around.

Now, I can't wag my finger too hard at parents who need a break and employ the EBS (electronic baby-sitter) because that's what NOGGIN does for me more often than I care to admit. But my agenda is not to have the kids "learn something" from watching TV. we all know TV kills brains! (to be honest, it keeps ryan out of my hair for a few moments of peace and no-injuries-involved quiet.) and parents are fooling themselves if they think that buying these ridiculous battery operated "teachers" for their kids is going to help them any. i don't know (m)any adults that absolutely LOVE being attended to by automated, mechanical voices for mere seconds on the phone, let alone that grating robotic voice being your company and entertainment all day. kids need SO SO SO much more than toys that are supposed to teach them something. truth is they don't need that AT ALL. rather toys that will water and fertilize their very ripe imagination.

kids are not people with empty head that need to be filled!!! they have so much to offer our world. they need to be engaged, heard and respected as individuals.

A.S. Neil, founder of The Summerhill School best summarises my not humble enough opinion on what kids really need to foster optimum growth and development of the whole person. (please click the link and read the page. it's well worth it!)

parents, PLEASE - give your kids the best start: ludicrous, ridiculous, scandalous, perposterous, illogical unheard of amounts of unstructured PLAY, PLAY and MORE PLAY! trust me - it's ALL they need!!!

for me, my goal as a parent is not to have (raised) the smartest (= richest) adult on the block, but instead the most whole, happy, well-adjusted, loving, kind person s/he can be. and if my kids are happy 'sweeping streets' (to quote Neil), then so be it. can you imagine what we could do for the next generation if we stop perpetuating the lie that more money = more happiness?

house in a good neighborhood: $300,000
decent transportation: $20,000
being comfortable in your own skin:


Friday, August 17, 2007

Ayudame! Rarrr, rarrrr!

Quoted verbatim from my dear son's cries for help this morning as he was helplessly trapped in the dreaded high chair. I sat scarfing my own breakfast when he had finished his and began to call out for help. "Help! Help! Ayudame! Rarrr, rarrr!" (this is the baby jaguar growl, by the way). While I did, indeed, find his situation quite amusing - i was not moved to rush to his aid as I knew it meant that he would then be scaling the mommy mountain to achieve greatness and also a little attention.

On the dark side...

I am stuck knee deep in the thick, quick-sand like mud of unknowing. What am I supposed to do about my stunt double of a a son's infatuation with hitting, pushing and biting people? This, for him, is like joyriding on a Friday night. The only book I have looked at speaks to addressing behaviors like these expressed in frustration on the child's part, but he's as happy as a clam when he's injuring and maming. "NO Baby Ryannnnnnnnnn!" cries sister Lauryn after being hit or pushed for the millionth time that minute. I mean, honestly. How many times can i FIRMLY say (without yelling (98, no 90% of the time)): "RYAN. NO HITTING (pushing, biting)!!!" (even as i type, nathan is out in the living room saying the same "ryan" i use as preventative harmony maintenance.)

Still, he's so funny. He just came in here and told me that he's really fast. As in "Mommy! I ree faaas," But I really DON'T know what to do with his socially unacceptable behavior. is this a phase? Will it pass before his 20th birthday? is there a chance that I could actually pinch (twist, that is) his ear OFF his head? I used to pinch his ear but that was funny to him (sad to Lauryn - go figure) until Nathan demonstrated the evil demon twist and damn near killed me, then i started doing that to ryan. But even that doesn't help. He'll recover from the weeping and wailing and nail someone (innocent bystanders, kids.. whoever!) without remorse.


Lauryn in the meantime, is absolutely LOVING the little summer camp I've been doing for the past two weeks from the adjoining (or adjourning, according to the Bahamian classifieds) flat. I have to say that I am also really enjoying the group of kids that have been coming to play.

She's so excited about her upcoming birthday. Everything she sees that she'd like to have (yay, capitalism!), she asks if she can have it for her birthday. And I say "sure, dahling". Even though you and I know she's only getting one thing. But it's gonna big a BIG one thing. We're getting a puppy!!!! Not just for her birthday but for other reasons as well. Namely that we (I) really like the idea of a family pet and we need a presence in our yard at night to keep the jonesers (street people) that wonder through our area OUT. They already stole the gas tank off the grill that was sitting by the laundry room.

So, with all the birthdays coming up, I'm sure we're in for some exciting times next month.

If anyone at all reads this (besides me in a couple weeks), I would love some tips or advice if you've had personal experience with hitters/biters.

Until next time (hopefully not bloody OCTOBER!).

let it all hang out. ;)

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

summer '07 - so far so good

so we're rounding third base for july and we've been having a great summer!

we had our little trip to FL to visit Grandma Peeches for her 50th b-day and that was lovely. And since we got back on the 2nd of this month we've been to the pool or beach what feels like almost every day. (did u get that?) Lauryn is getting her lovely summer brown on. Ry is getting his summer brownER and so am i.

we've had one notable incident though. and that is that lauryn has since recieved two haircuts! TWO haircuts? yes, t-w-o: 2! The first was by her dear friend Will. And the second was by a kind professional who finished up what Will started. The story: Deborah, Alison and I were sitting and chatting (at D's house) and having a lovely visit when Lauryn came out from Wills room grinning eager beaver grins from ear to ear. Look, Mom! She proudly said as she stood not 2 feet from my face. I began to dole out the usual mommy praises (read artificial enthusiasm) for her hair so neatly combed back and then -


Deborah and i saw it at the exact moment together. so make that a double AAAAAAAAAHHHHHH!!! Poor Alison was bewildered and confused thinkign something must be desperately wrong (injuries, big scary bugs and such delights). Meanwhile Deborah was up like a bolt and in the room like a flash. Where she found Will, scissors and big clumps of dark curls resting somewhat menacingly on the floor.

I sat fingering the spot that used to be lauryn's hair. It wasn't shorn but it was low. He had basically trimmed all the hair around her face. Mostly the top (giving bangs, i guess) and taken a few bits off the sides. or so we thought... Then i opened up her plait and started finding many more yet unfallen clumps. oh, it was sad saad saaad. but still we managed to giggle under our breaths as we admonished the non-haircutting rules with sternish faces and pointing fingers waving.

righteous retribution? i asked Deborah. After all, Lauryn did cut Sagey's hair a couple of months back. And she (Sagey) ended up with a mangled version of a half mullet on one side. But there were, thankfully, silver linings to be had. Sagey's fix turned out to be a super cute cut that we all ADORE! And lauryn now has 'fringes' in the front which makes it waysuperawesome better for with the swimming because she doesn't have all that hair in her face. (her hair grows forward, you see.)

it seems this whole hair chop thing is a sort of right of passage for young girls everywhere. i, myself, carved out a little patch at the front of my head when i wanted bangs as a little girl of four.

alas, we think it's kind of the story of the summer (so far, fingers crossed) and look forward to splish splashing much much more in the weeks ahead. hopefully i will dig up another nugget of time where i can post again in the near future. until then, live long and prosper. (goofy star trek sign here)

Saturday, June 23, 2007

shameless plug (II)

like the overstressed, overtired mom who forgets to take her pill, i have started yet another blog. (sad, sad, sad)

but there were things i wanted to talk about that didn't fit either of the forums of my first two. so, welcome into the family the newest blog Live! From the Fan.

if you are sensitive (yeah right), watch out - i actually spell out the words i've been abbreviating here. (WTF etc.) just to give fair warning is all.

see you around!

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Marker my words

so, the most recent in the long string of dramas and events that make up my mothering journey (good lord, is it really like that? drama to drama? not really no but it sounds SO much more interesting when i say it like that, doesn't it?) ... where was i? oh yes the mothering journey. well, the most recent event was quite - how shall i say? - traumatizing. yes, traumatizing - that's good. the thing wasn't good but the term is quite appropriate.

so what's this major drama? pull up your chair and sit awhile partners. it's storytellin' time.

my darling daughter was at a our second home (everybody knows whose house i'm talking about) and while i was taking a little 'nap' she got into some trouble. got into? no she made some trouble. she had been graffiti-ing on the two newly bought, newly painted chests of drawers with chalk (thank god!) and she got caught by dear Janet. she was told in no uncertain terms NOT to do that - DON'T WRITE ON THE DRAWERS! - because it was naughty and then the chalk was cleaned off the drawers. that was that. she was left to her own - well behaved - devices...

well, somehow - maybe through black magic or something - she found a RED MARKER.


no really, stop.

i said RED MARKER.

oh i know you know what happened next. but you have NO idea how much it happened. it happened all over the front of the tall one - i mean every drawer face - and a little 'footnote' in the form of a huge pointy roundish something with a little friend beside it on the front of one drawer on the small chest of drawers.

all this was completely unbeknownst to me even after i woke up and took 20 minutes to gather my children, NOTICE and remark on the red marker on her clothes, and leave. it wasn't till later that dearest deborah called to talk to me about it that i even had the foggiest clue of what had happened.

(all that space is shocked, stony, angry silence)

i was really pissed. so i waited till the next morning to speak to lauryn about it.

WTF, Lauryn?

she said she wanted to make it beautiful. but why did you do it after your were told not to?
because it was too much fun to stop.

do you see the psychological warfare i'm up against here people? these are comparable to WMD's!

of course i get it that she's only almost four. but she still needed her to know that it was completelty unacceptable. so she got a good stern talking to from us, a long time out from playing at deborah's (three days), and from watching anything at all on TV and she had to try to clean it off the drawers and she had to apologize to deborah (and rick?) and we all loved her anyway.

does this mean she'll never use a marker on an inappropriate surface ever again for the rest of her whole life?

what do you think?

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Momster me... ROAR!!!

hey it's perfect mom me back from la-la land. back to reality. the reality where i am actually sometimes a monster of a mom. it's really hard for me to admit this into vast open space for everyone one to see, but transparency makes it better for others. (right?) anyway, i had a crappy morning and lauryn was (unintentionally) driving me crazy. a million zillion questions, 90% of which were the single, three letter word question: why? or actually, she says "'cause why?"

it was only about 930 when my little red i-have-had-enough-of-this light started blinking with increasing speed and intensity. 930 AM and i was done. how awful am i?

it was just one of those days when every. single. dogvomit thing was a huge BATTLE! you ever have one of those? is the pope still catholic?

so all this to say that by the time we arrived at our destination at 1145 and i had parked the car and looked around at lauryn and saw her oozing green nose (yummy!) after i had TOLD her to GET A TISSUE AND WIPE IT before we left the house, i snapped like a dry twig. and i said to her, DIDN'T I TELL YOU TO WIPE YOUR NOSE BEFORE WE LEFT THE HOUSE, LAURYN?! and i grabbed a wipe with all kinds of malicious intent and reached around to wipe her face. but she pre-empted me and her hand shot up to her face where she began to use the back of her hand to drag that yummy goodness across her cheek. did i already say that i had snapped? because that was a lie. it was at this point that i growled at her and almost screamed: NO!!!!!!!!!!! and she froze. then i tried to wipe the crap off her face and she pulled back (snap! growl.) GIVE YOUR FACE TO ME!!!

can you imagine the scene? and literally, within seconds she was talking and acting like nothing had transpired between us. i mean, about 3 seconds. is she really that forgiving? that innocent? can she actually just let go like that? or will this come up in 20 years on a doctor's couch?

i really hate when i act like that. i was running it over and over again on the loop in my mind for hours after. feeling awful. but then i followed suit and forgave me. i think everyone involved knows i'm not actually evil. not perfect. but not evil either. how about you?

Thursday, May 24, 2007

my bug-eyed beaut'

you know how sometimes on tv they have the elapsed time photography of something magical that usually happens in a shroud of mystery, but then they go there and set up their cameras and wait and wait and then we get to sit at home and watch it happen in seconds? (what is that like a 50 word sentence?)

but you know what i mean - the amazing flower going from tiny little bud to amazing burst of color and majesty right before your very eyes. like that.

sometimes i feel like i'm watching that - a little bit, not a lot (kind of like the 2-second loop of the weather moving 1cm on the radar) - with my daughter, lauryn. it's like she's ever so gently, ever so slowly unfurling right before my very eyes. and some days i stand in genuine awe and amazement to see the beauty and the joy that is my daughter. that is lauryn. not my daughter, really - just her very own self.

there are moments when the intoxicating fragrance of her catches me be surprise and i have to stop what i'm doing and breathe deeply. drinking her into my very cells. her laugh. her determination. her spark. those big tropical sky-like brown eyes- mostly sunny and clear, but sometimes uncertain, even rainy. her still-tiny hands on my face, arms tightly clinging to my neck. the actual feel of her skin under my lips. that she still fits in my lap. her delight in living things - especially animals. these are the moments when i feel so tinkerbell-ish; like i've been sprinkled with fairy dust and i really could just float away with my happy thought that is lauryn elisabeth.

she caught a frog yesterday. and i was so proud. i felt like - like i had the coolest kid on the block. did you know lauryn caught a frog? i said to everyone with ears. tell 'em, lauryn - i said almost gloating (i bet your kid doesn't catch frogs.) but not quite (thank god because, really that's not at all what it was about). and she was proud too. she wanted to tell everyone. and she did. and, of course, when our audiences were duly impressed, i would fill in that she catches lizards too. regularly. (can you see the aloof smirk on my face?) oh yes, she really is something else, isn't she?

i love feeling this way about lauryn. i wish it was possible to feel those feelings 24/7 (do i really wish that? i guess that would be nice.) but alas, this is the real world and i sho nuff don't. but for now, let's just revel in this bliss. let's flounce carelessly in the fairytale fields and meadows of the times when we are fully aware of - immersed in - the magic and wonder of our children, for they are not so close together as we'd like them to be.

i'll close with a quote from Anne Lammot's superaweseomgreat book, Plan B (this is majorly paraphrased due to the slow but steady removal of my brain tissue through my breasts over the last 4 years)... blah blah blah here it is: unconditional love is real and attainable, it's just that it only lasts for about 8 to 10 seconds at a time.

Monday, May 21, 2007

NQP Curriculum (Primary School)

i really wanted to show you why i am so excited about this school. Here is the official site for the creators of the curriculum. Specifically, it's the page about the primary school curriculum.

looks doubtful that I'll be able to teach there anytime soon, however, as they have some requirements that I don't currently meet. more on that later. right now, I MUST get to bed.

nighty night.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

fairytales for feminists: ode to elisabeth

another one of my agenda's, i guess:


really, i'm about "humanism" but sometimes you have to pick a group and fight for them to gain status (africans, for example). and the glass ceiling is real people. lots of women are reaching for the short end of the stick and the don't even know it. what do i mean by that?

settling for mediocre mates.
feeling inadequate without one.
walking out of the room.
believing in an inherant weakness.
forgetting that the divine is equally as feminine as she is masculine.
(are we or are we not made in the image of God(dess) and we ARE women, right?)
and much more!!

so, thanks to inspiration by some forward thinking friends (hey girls!) i have revamped my storytelling so that women aren't always helpless victims that need rescuing by sword weilding, crown wearing heroes. last night i created my ode to elisabeth.

prince rafael always had a hard time listening to his mother. as a young boy, a teenager and even as a young man. (i figure i shouldn't deviate too much from the standard terminology till i'm deeper in the water.) anyway, he grew up well enough and loved to take walks in his vegetable garden. where he grew all kinds of wonderful, healthy veggies so that he could be strong and smart. zucchini, potatoes, broccoli - you name it; (no seriously. you name it! you can put in your own list here). so one day while walking in his garden, poor prince rafael stumbled and hit his head and fell into a deep, deep (deep) sleep.

meanwhile... (i'm enjoying this a little too much, i think)

in the next QUEENdom over, there was a lovely princess called elisabeth. sshe was always kind and good and took good care of her little brother (i'm not kidding. i said that.) she never pushed or hit and always LOVEd to share everything she had. she also had special magical powers of healing. and so people from all over came to her for her to touch them with her kindness and love. (inspired by a story i saw on 20/20 on friday about a living Goddess in india called Amma who hugs people, i also said that princess elisabeth gave the best hugs ever!) but most of all, she LOVED animals. here i listed a litany of every furry, shelled, crawling, cold-blooded, minute, enormous animal i could think of that came to her for healing for themselves as well. (at this point in the story, lauryn enthusiastically interjected that princess elisabeth "is me, mommy!!!") and said that coincidentally elisabeth also had lovely brown skin and dark brown curly hair and the biggest most beautiful dark brown eyes you'd ever seen. so big, i said, she held the world in them. (damn! i'm good)

well, princess elisabeth got word of the tragedy with prince rafael and decided at once to ride on her beautiful mare "midnight" where she was warmly welcomed by prince rafael's worried mom. and elisabeth gained an audience with the (comatose - haha) prince and she gently and lovingly touched his shoulder and he woke up. and he was so thankful to her that they became best friends. and he showed her his vegetable garden and they grew veggies together and took long rides in the coutnry together and loved being with each other so much that they decided to build a new castle together and share their lives together as friends. (i guess i could've thrown some economic justice in but the story was already chockoblock full. i'll come up with another story for that.)

isn't that a nice story? i know i'll tell that one again and again. (if she wants to hear it!) "mom! enough with the agenda stories! can't you just tell me regular old goldie locks?"

just doing my job...

Sunday, May 13, 2007

mother to mother

dear mothers,

i am just thinking about this journey we are on as a group and as individuals. i am thinking about the beauty of who we are and what doing with our lives and in our children's lives. i am honored to be a mother and i honor you, mother.

we are connected, each of us, to the quiet strength of our Mother Earth.
we pass on our strenghts to our daughters, and to our sons.
we are responsible for the coming of a new day; a new generation of human beings.
we are the roots of the trees of our families.
we are the soft place that our beloved comes to rest.
we are the sparkle on the ocean
the light of the moon
the whisper of the wind
the rhythm of the world.

i honor you mother. your strength, your beauty, your love.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

getting an edumacation in para-(medic please!-)dise

first off. sorry it's been like 10 years since i've last posted. i am trying not to say that i was in the vortex that is my life, but i don't seem to be able to help it. this thirteen jobs business is kicking my but. thirteen? let's see...

nursing (that's two: am and pm)
talking to my preschooler (over and over and over and over and over and over again)
recovering from this op. (almost over. yaay!)
waking up every morning
strapping kids into their car-seats (don't scoff. when it's more than one kid, it counts as employment!)

i think that might be it. so i lied. call it exaggeration. anyway, my latest job has been sorting out lauryn's schooling. since the home school thing isn't looking too - let's just say it - pretty. oh, i AM starting a home school - a play-group in my apartment to be more "pacific". (i've always wondered how come those people never were "atlantic" about anything.) anyway, it's going to be called the spectrum play school. i still hope to pull of the montessori thing in the next couple of years but in the meantime, it will be a thrice weekly for 2's and 2 1/2's.

(have you noticed that i have yet to get to the subject line of this post? well, i DID mention it last paragraph but let's just get to it then, shall we?)

disclaimer: the thoughts, views and opinions expressed at milkshaken will not reflect those of the reader. you may not like it, but don't be offended because every mom does what she feels is best. and then there are those moms who risk martyring themselves to do better than that. i relinquish all responsibility for anybody's feeling offended cause that's not about me. nuff said.

lauryn will be going (we hope) to the little schoolhouse in september. most of you already know that i am a very firm believer in no academic learning for young children. i think it is absolute BS. this ridiculous race to the illusion of a finish line has trickled all the way down into the pre-schools and i am pissed off at the shit that i hear about at some schools. for example there is a local school that's well respected. the owner is quite a lovely individual and i do not wish to mar her credentials so i will not name the school. let's just call it "the top school". the group of kids there that are 3 at that start of the school year are now learning how to write their names. let me say that again. THREE. LEARNING TO WRITE THIER NAMES. i really am heartbroken. and i have a friend whose child is being threatened to be HELD BACK. HELD BACK. if s/he doesn't learn how to do this by june. this child will not be four until after june. people are you hearing me? this isn't even pre-kindergarten here. that is some shit. i've mentioned it to a couple of early learning specialists and they - traditional as they were - were equally flabbergasted.

so there are really one a few options on the island for schooling: (i'll use fake names to protect the schools' identities)

monarch way- not even if it was free and the last school standing. everyone there is vomiting (anti) jesus crap that will darken any light that remains in the soul.

prime and anti - too far. no high school (major problem) and the curriculum is really really heavy. so no.

elizabeth's choice (EC) - went for the tour. the ELC is NOT an option. more on that later.

sandy port kids club - btdt. too far. waiting for AL to retire either way.

not quite presbyterian (NQP) - costs a ton of cash. went for the tour anyway. here lies the crux of my sad state of affairs.

now for the stories. for me, it had come down to EC because it was a good school and it was close by and relatively affordable. with ideals like mine: montessori learning, no rushing kids, lots of space to run and play, a pool and a good sports programme - it is impossible to find the perfect school. (here in para-medic please-dise). but i figured if we skip the ELC (which i've heard countless scary stories about) and just started in the primary school it would be OK. well, deborah went to book the space and - surprise surprise - it's almost impossible to get in without going through the ELC. so we went back and did the tour to see for ourselves if it was as scary as some had made it out to be. sad news. it was. i am tormented by the image of three year olds (turning four during the school year) with big red X's and check marks and SCORES on their WORKSHEETS. count the beans, glue them down in quantities from 1 to 10. that was the task. fair enough (i guess, but not really) and they were graded. what TF is that? deborah and i left and we were reeling. we were almost prepared to deal with the writing in pre-k, the lack of good toys, the computer in the class - those big red X's were the little breeze that blew us over and now we were stuck. now what?


my brain had the lovely little idea to "just have a look see" at what NQP has to offer. this, for me, was kind of like saying i need a watch, let's just nip into patek phillipe to see what they have. mostly ridiculous since i can only really afford a citizen but i happen to know that they (PP) make very good watches.

naturally, i went for the tour at NQP and it was WONDABAR! INCREDIBLE!! AMAZING!!! The classrooms were like little shrines to most of my ideologies. (of course.) no letters/numbers on the walls. just really neat creative stuff. they were doing eric carle books and had done artwork to match the story. they were learning about how humans coexist with animals. they have a fantastic library with gallery floor seating for the little ones. they have a huge, fantastic music room. no religious stuff. reading doesn't start till reception (kindergarten) and even then they only get books when each child is ready. no computer in the class. no graded work as far as the eye could see. just lots of color and wonder all around the room. monthly parent-teacher talks. parents can come it at 2:15 and share in story time. folders done at year's end to show the progress through the year. (this is how rex drew mom and dad in september - circles - and this is how max is now drawing mom and dad in may - circles with lines for legs and facial features.) i really was impressed and i had to keep my jaw from being slack with wonder and aww. no kidding. it was that good. so what's the problem? the little thing i haven't mentioned yet: tuition. and i say tuition because "school fees" just wouldn't cover it. sort of like calling a luxury million foot yacht a boat. it's right. but it isn't.

twenty six seven hundreed dollars per term... for kindergarten! that's 2-7. hundred. kindergarten. it increases for each grade level. so now what?


get a job teaching there. the vice-principal who gave the tour said that the discount for teachers is generous and was made even more so just this year as there were still some teachers who couldn't afford to send their kids there and the admin thought that was insane. so i finish my degree and teach there. or, get a part time job and earn $400/week working from 10 to 2 every day.


bottom line, i know i'm going to get flak for my decision (just like natural birth, co-sleeping, extended nursing, un-schooling, healthy eating and all that) but i am a mother who intends to do the absolute best i can for these people whose lives have been entrusted to me. and i will do what it takes for them to get the kind of education i think is best. like i said to nathan, it won't be easy. it won't be pretty at times but i will show up for these kids. i will be home when they are home and i will find a way to work and make the money i need to while they are in school. and it will cost me a lot (personally) but this is what i've signed up for. so look for bitching and moaning on the side.

yeah baby.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Sharing a Story

Dear Friends,

I subscribe to a list for individuals associated with lactation (professionals, usually) and the message below was recently posted. I just wanted to share it with you as well:

_ _ _ _ _

Ronald McDonald House asks our family to leave for breastfeeding!
My sister and I are staying in the Ronald McDonald House in Houston because
one of her 17 month old twins had to have brain surgery to remove a tumor
last week. The RMH has been great and we have felt so blessed to find such a
safe and homey place to take care of her other two children and my daughter
while we are here for Tobin's recovery.

However yesterday my sister, who is nursing the twins, was asked to stop
nursing in the communal area of the Ronald McDonald House and to take it up
to her room. She was shocked! After his surgery her son will basically only
drink breastmilk and it is the only thing that eases the constant pain and
anxiety he feels. She told them that it was illegal, according the Texas
state law, to ask a breastfeeding mother to stop nursing in any public or
private place. She also tried to explain to them how inconvenient it would
be for her to take all her children up 3 floors to their room every time her
sick child needs to nurse.

Unfortunately after 30 minutes of arguing, and being threatened with being
kicked out, she was in tears and they weren't backing down. So I headed down
there to talk to the administrator because I am also nursing my three year
old daughter. I even pulled up the state law on my laptop and after a
lengthy discussion the administrator acted as if she was going to examine
the law so she understood it and move on. I thought that was the end of it.

Today I find out they may be kicking us out of the RMH because we refused to
comply with what they call their "interpretation of the law". Their
interpretation is that if they provide somewhere else for us to nurse they
don't have to let us nurse in public places. Since when do laws get to be
personally tailored to an organizations needs?

This is a ridiculous and terrible situation for all of us, I am not sure
what else we will do if we can't stay here but we can't just not nurse our
children. The Ronald McDonald is such a great resource, why do they have to
discriminate against nursing moms?

If you would like to send a letter we would appreciate it. Arlene Whatley is
The Executive director of The Holcombe location of the RMH where we are
staying and one of the people who Jessica spoke to about this. It is Arlene
that seems to be making the decision here. Her email is and her phone is (713) 795-3570.

_______ [end quote]

If you are so inclined, please take action on these women's and children's behalf. Many thanks!

Friday, April 06, 2007

the gap

for parents who know they plan to have more than one child, the biggest question is usually how far apart should we space them? before kids (BK) i always knew i wanted a two year gap between my kids. one year was just too short (afterall i did give up my catholocism) and three years seemed too far apart.

then i had lauryn. tan-tan taaaan! (that's the "doom" music, incase you missed that.)

anyway, i am fighting the urge to state the painfully obvious fact that this was what we like to call "a reality check". it's such a lovely fairy world BK. you have all kinds of plans and dreams complete with the slightly blurred, misty edges to them and then boom. you have the actual baby.

and your world is reduced to:
what day is it again? (actually, forget what day - what TIME is it?)
she needs to eat AGAIN?
she's up AGAIN?
she's got a poopy diaper AGAIN?
she needs to eat AGAIN? ALREADY?
what day is it?

yeah yeah. you get the picture. if you happen to feed your baby yourself, the above questions are peppered with other more critical questions and exclamations like:

is this the right hold?
is she latched on right?
is this the right hold?
is she latched on right?
maybe like this?
ohhh. like this!
wow. that doesn't hurt.

let's not even talk, moms, about the unbelievable "discomfort" in our birthing spots. OUCH! whether it was the tube or the emergency exit - that is some major "discomfort" (translation: mind altering PAIN!)

so then the question of the second child gets pushed out the back door into the dark, dusty storage shed that's conveniently covered up by brush and vines. and for us, the [PLANNED] delay was also about practical decisions: i needed to go back to school, work etc. etc.

then it happened.

oh, you know what i'm talking about. IT. HAPPENED. and we concieved another baby when lauryn was 15 months old. just like i had originally planned and then un-planned. and unto us another child was born. exactly 2 years and 4 days after our first. and for me it was - well - a vacuum. time disappeared. it was all at once stopped yet hemmoraging into space. life was babies, feeding and diapers and no sleep. ever. for a while there, i would say that i truly lost myself. and that was very, very hard for me. in all honesty, the first six months were like being blindfolded, spun around in a strange room and running at full speed into everything. lots of stuff didn't make it. the wonderful ideals that were carved in limestone BK soon eroded into real life sand. enter TV, disposable diapers, KFC. anything at all that looked like a lifesaver ring in my roaring ocean of double motherhood.

alas, this may be construed as a digression. my original intention was not - as it may seem - to bemoan all the ginormous but surmountable odds of having two children in two years (and 4 days), but to talk about how all that is now turning into a vision of a glamorous beach in paradise. note i said a vision.

the two of them are really starting to develop a relationship. playing and laughing together and keeping each other company. (some or most of the time). my secondary role now, i would say is more of a referee than the whole damn team. okay, 80% of the team. (yes 80. when milk starts coming out of HIS nipples, then it might be 50/50). i really can see the benefit of the 2yr gap starting to sprout a little. (i have to rush my closing arguments because i need to get going.)

having had this experience, i still think 2yrs is a great space for long term relationships with the sibs. but i think, in this day and age, the best way (not the only way, just the best way,) is to have full time help. a live in nanny if you can afford it. but only for 2 or more kids. not with one. no offence to parents of one, but after my two - one was a walk in the park. and i do think i would want a third (insert collective gasp here), it would be on the condition that i don't have to work till s/he is about 6 and i would have to have a live in home helper.

in light of these statements, i would like to take a moment to offer my sincerest praise to every mom out there who's doing it alone or "quasi" alone (you know what i mean). i have a lot of respect for you and i take my bra off to you!

signing off to referee some more...

Saturday, March 31, 2007


i hardly EVER watch this show. but since heros has been on holiday, i caught one episode supernanny the other week. and it was the one episode where she did a crap job. she made this poor woman wean her baby because it was "an unhealthy relationship". boy you know that put a bee in my bonnet! i wanted to get up and write ABC that very second. but i was too tired. (LOL)

she said the woman was doing wrong because she was still wearing her 14 month old baby and nursing her to boot. now, i will say she was doing pure nonsense with the older kid. letting him back talk like nobody's business at 12 years old. jo did good with that one. but someone (me?) needs to inform miss frost about the fact that human milk is for human babies. we are not now and will never be baby cows (which is who cow's milk was intended for.) the WHO, LLL, UNICEF and anybody with sense about human feeding will tell you to nurse up to two years and beyond. hell, even the politically crippled AAP says up to one year and beyond.

come on people.

come on.

[maybe i should still write that letter after all.]

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

what the hell do i know?

less than six months away from my big 30th birthday, i ask the question: how come life still feels so much like trial and error? will i ever be able to make good, sound decisions? is there ever a time when one has 20/20 foresight?

i am at odds with living in the moment and planning for the future. can one even do that? small, slow sigh

i just told nathan that i can't wait to be forty. translation: i look forward to the day when i'll feel like i actually know something about what i'm doing.

to buy a house or not to buy a house?
where should our kids go to school?
should i start my own school?
when we will ever be in any sort of financial homeostatis?
how can i share in a practical way that doesn't feel like too much for me?

[more sighing]

the list goes on and on. the answer?




that's a tough one.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

a cut below

well... this has to be quick. i had semi-emergency sugery on the ninth of march. been on my side and tummy since. not much sitting. even less walking. had a pilonidal cyst that turned into an abcess and it grew to the size of a golf ball. all this happened right by my tailbone (that's the nice way of saying "me arse") and so it had to be surgically removed. hurt more before than after, believe me.

best bit is my insurance had lapsed. and the bill was $4000 +. nice.

anyway, gotta go. gotta get OFF my butt! and on to my side. getting lots of reading done.

be back soon!

Monday, March 05, 2007

what's in a name?

quite a while ago, when lauryn was still a little baby, we had some friends come over for a visit and one these friends called me a housewife.

now for some women, that doesn't make a hill of beans of difference to them. so what if she called me a housewife?

well, it stung. and i said that i prefer the term "stay at home mom". to which she replied (somethign like) "whatever. i really don't care what you call yourself." ouch!

so what is my problem with this antiquated, patriarchal term exactly? why should that bother me? in my opinion, housewives are involuntary. that's just the way life was. you were a wife: you were confined to the house. period. end of story. for me, being a stay at home mom, is kind of declaration that i am choosing to be an intentional parent. it's recongising that i have the choice and though it would not occur to me to do anything else, the decision to stay home from 'gainful employment' and raise our children is, indeed, mine to make.

maybe someday i'll get to the point where that particular comment will amount to nothing more than hot air long gone. and i can say "whatever" back to that. (i look forward to that). and right now, i know that this person really hasn't a clue about who i am and dare i say not much interest in anyone other than #1. i mean, she thought i was trying to impress her with my child's cloth diapers. [scoff!]


Saturday, March 03, 2007

It's a date!

so guess what? my hubby and i are going on a date tonight!! we did go to a wedding last week, which was lovely but it wasn't really a date. if church is in the mix (baptist church at that), you know that can't be qualified as a date!

kids are getting dropped at deborah's to be looked after by blessed Janet. (she really is blessed. by the way that's bless-ed, not blest) and we going to Indigo's to watch Mizpah and her band perform. Mizpah is a wicked good singer and i've seen her sing at NPCC but never seen her doing a proper 'gig' as it were. i'm really looking forward to it.

in other news, ryan's language skills are starting to bud. he absolutely adores Polar Bear, Polar Bear by Bill Martin Jr. and Eric Carle. He brings it to me and opens the book and points at all the animals. AHHNI! AHNI! AHNI! (as in annie) he says when he points to the elephant (every single time!), the snake is NAA(K: barely audible K at the end), the bear is BEH. But his favorite is the elephant. Oh, and the Lion : RAAA!! LOL!

I have to say I'm surprised he loves books as much as lauryn did considering how different they are from each other personality wise.

Last thing Houston, we finally have TOOTH!!. His bottom left (his left) canine has erupted! only seven more to go!!!

I'm off.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Lactivist Alert

right. i guess i'm on a roll tonight.

still, i really HAD to share this with you. as you can imagine i am an advocate and supporter of human milk for human babies and the way to get this milk is the place where is made, stored, kept at optimum temperature, sanitary, and always ready to serve - from a mother's breasts (aka breastfeeding). (oh no! she said the "B" word!! shock!!! dismay!! ... whatever.)

so you can imagine my blood boiling confusion when i read this story about a mom - Leigh Bellini - who was being asked, no threatened, to leave the mall for nursing her baby or else. can you freaking believe this? (yes, i'm passionate and pissed. it's my blog and i'll cuss if i want to, cuss if i want to. you would cuss too if it happened to you!)

so keep abreast of the goings ons. this shit cannot go on.

Please take action

i am not going to go off on my soapbox tirade about the FDA (the EPA, the CDC etc.) and how they are simply puppets for american corporate giants.

i am going to ask you to please take action against the latest in a long line of questionable decisions taken by the FDA. this is the one where they are going to OK the selling of meat and other products from cloned animals, and not require any labelling to that effect. ri-goddamn-diculous. honestly.

please, you don't have to have a US address, just click here to send a letter to the right people.

signing off,
a very pissed of me

Monday, February 26, 2007

in sickness and in health

Lauryn is sick again. this morning at school, when we were on our way in from the playground, i noticed some grayish snot coming out of her nose (well, in all honesty it was actually already out and making a break for her top lip (EWWWW!!!)) and i thought "oh no. not again." and then not long after snack she had a mini pee accident (leakage, really) and i was changing her and she felt a bit warm to the touch and though i had tried to imagine every other reason why she would have watery eyes during snack time, i still didn't admit to myself that my little lauryn could be getting sick.

it wasn't until around 11:45 when she got up from 2nd snack and went to curl up in the kid sized couch that i finally took my one way trip back from de nile and said that she must be getting sick. :( poor dear. so she's been running the fever all day but thank god her spirit isn't suffering. she was outside blowing bubbles and everything.

funny story: yesterday we were at a birthday party for her two cousins (siblings) and she was in the bouncy castle having a grand time. so ryan went in to join the fun and to try and encourage him to jump, i started bouncing up and down on the outside to show him what to do. Lauryn then asked why i was jumping. i told her and she advised me that "you shouldn't jump mommy, b'cause you'll break your nummies." now, i had the sense to know that something interesting was coming and i did imagine that it might have to do with my 'nummies' - but the warning that i might break them had not at all occured to me.

[shaking my head]

this girl is too much. she really is my favorite girl ever!

Sunday, February 18, 2007

new blog

i've decided it's time for the god talk to have it's own forum. this is, after all - MilkShaken: ode to the joys and trials of being (a lactating goddess of) a mom to two young'uns. so you can find my spiritual, philosophical and theological ramblings at The Big Questions.

just thought you'd like to know.

imagine that

my little lauryn has the biggest imagination of any three year old i know. (and believe me, i know a lot!) she is always pretending something. she really likes it when we pretend that she's the mommy and i'm her doughta (that's how she prounces daughter). tonight she said i would be the 'lil girl'. and nathan was my brother. and ryan was my daddy. and she even makes sure i renounce my lactating facilities and abilities. a la: you have small nummies. and i have big nummies to nurse my babies. and you aren't nursing baby ryan (mean time whenever i AM nursing baby ryan i have to say that i'm not.) and god forbid i slip up and refer to myself as mommy. she has an outright panic attack and can't get the words out fast enough "no. i'm the.. the.. the.. i'm the.. the... mommy!! your the baby! and i have to apologise profusely and return to character as the baby.

she is also CONSTANTLY (i mean without ceasing in a biblical kind of way here folks) pretending that her stuffed animals are puppies or kittens. or, the latest, miracats (that's laurynese for meerkats, of course.) and i am always needed to hold or being given a nicely wrapped gift of a puppy or baby miracat to hold. "you can hold the baby, mommy. it's alright" she says like she's trying to reassure a scared child. that lauryn. she's something else.

she's really starting to take on a 'big sisterly' attitude about ryan. key word: starting. they are playing together a little more each day (well maybe each week is more like it.) so that's nice to see. it's a faint glimmer of a sparkle of what may yet be on the horizon for these two. solidly encased, of course, in the requisite sibling rivalry. just want to make sure you don't have pretty, fairy land like pictures with clouds around the edges; pictures of the kids laughing and running through a meadow, holding hands in the sunshine. it ain't like that. but the possibility of friendship and fun together is what i see and what i look forward to seeing more of. that she's calling him "ry-ry" is too cute to me. and sometimes if he's fussy she says to me "i think ryan wants to nurse mommy. you need to nurse him." i smile and shake my head to myself a little as i say:

thanks lauryn. thanks very much. :)

p.s. i just have to mention that she 'got married' the other night. to will (shock!!! they are like cats and dogs these two) and she even wore my 'klop-klop' shoes. (awwwwww).

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

un-mom friends

weather consciously or unconsiously, i have managed to end up with all mother friends. what i mean is that my social circle is made up almost entirely of women who are mothers. i have a few non-mom friends and i am now understanding why that happened/happens.

i just don't think that people without kids have even the faintest inkling of what it's like to have kids. just the way that men have no idea what it means to be a woman. or a black person doesn't know what it's like to be asian, for instance. the only difference between the mom and non-mom women is that this line is crossable. everyone who has children can remember the time when they would very confidently say to their other non-mom friends "when i have kids, i'll never let that happen" or "this is how my kid will behave". you know all that jazz. and now that we're on this side of the fence? phhh! right. we're all the perfect moms! aren't we dears? [capital N capital O capital T!!!]

sigh. it's just that i am not and have never been a very organised individual. call at a character flaw, bad personality trait, weak spot, achilles tendon - whatever. call it what you will - but that's me. of course i've tried all kinds of remedies but it seems to be in my very DNA coding. can you imagine an otherwise disorganised woman with two young children to raise and a part time job to boot? recipe for utter chaos! shaking my head honestly, all i can promise anyone is that i'll show up for my family always and for my friends whenever humanly possible and then the rest is a great big 'maybe'. let me bullet point it for you. my priorities are:

numero uno
. loving and caring for my family (blood and otherwise) and
. spiritual pursuits of love and wisdom (that's cianese for seeking God)

. friendship and community

. gainful employment

. serving in my church community

it used to just be god, family, ministry, work - but that was too cut and dried. plus if i was to be honest - and that's critical here - i had to switch 'ministry' and work because right now i really need the $$$.

anyway, all that to say: i love all my friends and i am grateful for the ones who know that i can't guarantee that i'll be anywhere but where i'm needed. and for the most part, that is with my two little babies who need me more than a non-mom (or even some other mothers) can understand.

this frustration that i feel at the lack of understanding on the non-mothers' part sometimes makes me feel like it's just not going to work (the friendship) but maybe i just need to help them realize that they really just don't have the faintest idea of the foggiest clue and they, therefore, have no right to judge me. can't handle the heat? eat fruit.

Monday, February 12, 2007

God Lite

have you seen these Google ads at the top???

i have GOT to quit with all the jesus and god talk! i mean, not that there's anything wrong with it but who knows what these links are at the top. Our Jesus Lord, Jesus Love???? seriously?

more on being a mom. i promise.

sick and tired

first it was dear lauryn - whom i've affectionately taken to calling Lallie - with a fever for three days straight then the cold-like stuff ensued. after she recovered it was me, no fever but i felt like crap for two and half days and then it was pretty much over. then poor little Ry-ry (as his sister calls him (awwwww)) got a fever on friday night and it didn't let up all weekend except for with drugs - which we kept adminstering faithfully because it was up to 104 at one point. ah-ah, mommy don't play dat. so against my usual disdain for drugs, legal and otherwise, we motrined and calpoled to keep him feeling 'comfy'.

so of course i went to the doc this am (missed yet another day of school) to find out that we only know what he doesn't have: a bacterial infection of any kind. could be the teeth. which is what my gut was very quietly and sheepishly saying in the corner all weekend. but teeth causing a 104 fever??? no way said my ridiculous 'common sense' side. i didn't mention that he also had diarrhea from tuesday to friday. that went for the sat and sun and came back today (mon). shit. no pun originally intended.

anyway, the canines on the top and bottom are coming and and it looks like the pre-molars could be busting through too. (shit! again). poor thing can't keep his fists out of his mouth. and he's drooling like rex in the noonday heat. no kidding. i feel so sorry for the poor thing. and for me too. no sleep!!! but what else is new?

so on that note, cian dahlin, it's 10:42 PEE EM. don't you think you should get your BUTT in BED ASAP??? duh. of course i do. but one more post first.

Monday, February 05, 2007

so it seems god is a colts fan, a christian (and possibly black?)

hurrah for the colts. hurrah for toni dungee (sp? too lazy to look right now). hurrah for black people. and for christian coaches too!! and thank god ?????

this is my problem with my intact but nevertheless fading theology: if tony dungi can thank god for bringing his team to victory - what does that mean about the other guy? whom toni himself claimed to be a christian too. i guess this means lovie smith is not one of god's favorite black coaches but tony is (??) why would god bring tony and not lovie? if the other guy was muslim and his team had won, would that them mean that god wasn't with tony and the colts? or worse, if the guy was a white guy who didn't even believe in god and he won - what then?

i don't think i'm saying what i mean here. it's just that whenever someone says ˆthank god for saving themˆ from or bringing them through and their neighbour is perishing or has perished or lost - is that in god's name too? stories of soldiers who wouldn't be here but for the love of god seem to imply that somehow that means that god didn't really love the other soldiers who died in the battlefield.

i don't know what all that means. i don't fault tony for thanking god. how could i? who else could he thank? (i mean besides the team, of course). the two best prayers i know (as i learned from Anne Lamott) are "thank you thank you thank you!" and "please help please help please help!" it's just that i don't understand. i mean obviously toni and lovie were both PRAYING for victory. why would god 'help' the colts and not the bears? or 'bless' (i use that term very vehhhhry loosely) toni and not lovie?

the implication in "thank God the colts won the superbowl spearheaded by a black, christian coach" is that these are the qualities that god is seeking in the people he helps. would one thank "love" for that stuff? don't think so. hmm... now the wheelse are starting off to a slow chug on my train of thought. i'll have to chew on that one.

please help please help please help!

Saturday, February 03, 2007

universalist, agnostic (ish), christ-follower

this sums up my position on spirituality at the moment. i believe in God, Whom I will refer to as Love from now on, cuz that just makes more sense to me. i believe Grace is available to every single human being so lovingly created by ths Love and as Spencer Burke put it (sort of) in A HERETIC'S GUIDE TO ETERNITY: grace is a miracle because it is not controlled, managed or dispensed by human beings or our religions. the way i see it, if you are seeking Love, you will encounter Love and Love will encounter you. for me Jesus' life was all about this love. for me, the LIFE of Jesus was critcally important. his way of life and loving was as close to perfect as i've heard or read about. i think his death was significant but i am not sure what it was really about. i think that's about something much bigger than i could think or imagine.

still, i have no certainties. i hold fast to no absolutes. i release religion. and the sense of liberation i feel is incredible! i am still not sure (as i said) about all that i believe. but i know what i don't believe anymore. i DO believe that everyone is in unless they choose to be out. i don't know what that means or how that looks. i DON'T believe that Love would condemn kind, gentle loving people all over the world (even not so kind or gentle but still seeking and sharing Love) because they didn't fit a very narrow set of rules that seem, for the most part, to have been created by us humans.

i mean, when did Jesus ever say that we should judge people and decide whether or not they would be getting to heaven? [scoff] fact is, he railed against religious people and all their ridiculous rules and institutionalization of faith. religious people (and i used to be one so i'm not casting stones so much as making an observation) are unable to see the forest for the trees right under their noses. but maybe they need to be given more grace and love than anyone else so they can recognize it a little more clearly. (someone i love dearly believes wholeheartedly that gay people cannot go to heaven NO MATTER WHAT. what TF is that about???? that's a hot button for me, obviously...) i digress.

i'm not claiming to have all the answers. or any answers for that matter. in fact, i mostly have questions. but the thing for me is that now that i have opened the doors and windows of my soul to let out the old dusty stuff i was holding on to, i have also allowed new fresh sun light and air in. and as long as one holds tightly to ones beliefs and (therefore to self-righteousness) it will be impossible to see or receive new truths. it's like saying - well i know everything i need to know thank you very much. i don't need to learn another new thing ever.

let's face it, reality - the universe, our lives, our ideas, our very bodies - are fluid and always changing. what was true two minutes ago is not true now. and as i evolve as a peson, a woman, a mother, a friend, as my own individual, so too does my concept of God. and for this i am eternally grateful. because i have glanced over my shoulder at the road that led me here and though it's been good, i do not want to go backwards on it.

silence and clarity are yours.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

I am finding myself. I am finding that I am comfortable with the way I am right this second. Inside and OUT. This is what I need for myself so that I don't allow any shit to come at myself. God loves me exactly the way I am and if it's good enough for the One who made me - damn - it's good enough for me. This is not to say that I plan to stagnate and never change because this is it. The reality of the world I live in and the reality of who I am is fluid and changes even with each keystroke of a blog. But I MUST accept and love the cian i am today so that i can be a new, possibly improved, cian in ten minutes, ten hours, ten days, months, years etceterahhh etceterahhh eteceterahhhh. Below is an email convo I've just had with a loved one. It is one of my early attempts at putting up my hand palm facing outward and saying - no, you may not cross this boundary please. I am still learning how to do this as I have always felt unable to refuse shit from older adults. I felt (was taught) that it was disrespectful. Well, I think it's disrespectful to make offhanded comments about someone's weight. Sorry, you'll have to scroll to the bottom of this post and read backwards. I haven't the energy to rearrange it.

Comments are welcome and invited. Even the rude ones. It will give me a chance to practice telling people to talk to the hand.

On January 23rd, 10: 20 PM cian sawyer wrote:

Dear Someone,

regarding the "weight issue" I do appreciate your concern. As I said, I am sure you intended to look out for me. But yes, it came across badly. I have been this weight since I can remember (I want to say about seven years). I guess i'm at a sort of homeostasis. (even after two pregnancies i came right back to this spot on the scale.) I had lost 20+ lbs before (pre-lauryn) and found them back in no time.

In our home we eat whole grains (for the most part), have something green most nights with dinner, and have few sweet treats lying around. I play tennis once (sometimes twice) a week and I am very busy at school with my 10+ students. I am not a perfect eater. but my cholesterol, both good and bad are at healthy levels, all my organs are in good health and overall, everything checks out well.

maybe i went a little too far with the cake comment because i was upset about your comment. i really am sorry i didn't get it. i love christmas cake and will not refuse it if it is offered to me again. ;) hint hint. life is short. one must not miss out on the simple pleasures - especially those that only come around once a year.

the point of my tirade is that i am unwilling to accept criticism about my weight or my appearance from anyone anymore. even if they are well meaning. there is no one i know to whom i would ever say that kind of thing, unless they were morbidly obese and they asked for my advice. i know you love me and thanks for your concern, but no more please.

lots of love and big booby hugs to you,
me too

On Jan 19, 2007, at 1:21 PM, Someone wrote:


Glad for the catch up. Got the sense that the weight issue came across badly. At the risk of pushing it. I am concerned for your health and the long tern effect that being over weight will and can cause. If you are healthy and comfortable with your weight then so am I. As we get older (the big "O") it gets increasingly important to stay healthy so just be aware of this. Will remember that maybe cake is not a good give for you, only if you promise not to over indulge, will send something else in future. Big hug up for the family take care of those colds like I know you can.

Love & Blessings


On Jan 18, 2007, at 6:01 PM, cian sawyer wrote:

Dear Someone,

Sorry about the cake. I really thought that i would have been able to get it but things didn't work out the way i had hoped. You know how you always think that you have more time than you actually have? So, I waited too late. Thanks for sending it though.


About my weight. I am wondering what you are concerned about. If it is my health, there is no need to worry. I've just had a complete physical and everything is great. If it is about my physical appearance, then there is no need to worry either. I am choosing to stop believing the lie that skinny=attractive. I may be a little above average (not media average, real life average), but there is nothing wrong with they way I look. So, while i appreciate your concern for me and i am sure it is coming from a place of love, you don't need to worry or speak to me about my weight anymore. Either way, I guess it's a good thing I didn't get that cake then, eh?

love is blessing. and so, i am thankful to have plenty of that!


On Jan 18, 2007, at 5:24 PM, Someone wrote:


How goes it with you, I understand that you never collected the cake. I am most "disapoint" not to worry life goes on. ...... Take good care of yourself and family. Hope this year you will get busy with your weight loss program, I have started mine.

Love & Blessings Adundantley


Monday, January 15, 2007

it's been year...

i cannot believe that i haven't posted since 2006. and i cannot believe that we are three weeks into january 2007 ALREADY! i hate to go into the regular old 'time is really flying' bit, but man, time is really flying! ...aaand cut.

everyone is sick. ryan has the snots and lauryn has a cough and i'm really fighting like hell to stave off this sore throat that's mounting it's best attack on me even as i type. *sigh* i let them both stay home today and knocked off work early to come relieve nathan of the childcare duties because his boss is real whip cracker! (on the off chance that your brain, like mine, is easily distracted by shiny or interesting things that lure you off the tracks of your train of thought - no, there was no pun intended with the whole 'cracker' thing. i simply meant a person who cracks the whip; therefore a whipcracker. okay back to the tracks) so he couldn't watch them for long and i had to hurry home. i couldn't take them to janet @ deborah's because will is sick and three sick kids is enough to drive anyone to drink. and we couldn't have that.

looking at buying a condo. although it looks doubtful (i wanted to say dubious but i think that would imply dodginess and that's not what i mean so i went with doubtful) because the guy says he think there are only one or two units left to reserve. shit. it's a good deal. for here, anyway. pre-con starts at 249 (K) for 2/2 with laminate wood floors (although i thought it was either/or but the email said laminate wood floors), granite countertops in kitchen and bath, walk-in closet in master, brushed nickel fixtures, what else? oh, oversized tub in master suite (hmmm? nice, right?) 9' ceilings - which are not super great, i guess average - okay i just read the advert: recessed lighting, solid wood cabinet doors in kitchen and bath... you get the picture. and only $5K down. crap. well, what is to be... i'll keep you posted on that. and also talk more about the whole decision making process later.

been thinking about my 30th and i don't know if we'll be able to pull of the jamaica party. but i'm thinking of doing an exuma trip as an alternative. the exuma cays are my second favorite place next to JA. the water down there is stunning at it's worst. breath-taking is a huge understatement. i honestly cannot describe it to you. so, we'll see how that unfolds too.

okay, i have to shower. last piece of news, i got my fourth period since december 2002 on saturday. yes, i said fourth (4th). ain't life pretty when you're knocked up and/or breastfeeding. the second was december 2004 then i got preggers with you know who and the third was october 2006 and now the fourth january 2007. i've made an appointment with the ever wonderful dr. lyons to put in a mirena (IUD) because i have basically surrendered and thrown in the white towel on the birth control drama. honestly. i really can't stand the idea of artificial hormones being pumped into my body by some foreign object living in my womb, but it's still much more pleasant than bloody condoms (blech!!! i HATE those things) and easier than remember to swallow a pill every single day for the rest of my life. (well, till the pause anyway). well that's a whole other blog entry too. could probably be a blog unto itself...

sniff sniff. is it possible to OD on vitamin C?