Monday, June 25, 2012

a little revelation

Today I had an interview about growing up "Gifted."

It was awesome.

I've never said it out loud to anyone before: "I'm Gifted."

It's not the sort of thing you're supposed to admit. Because you set yourself up for judgement. For failure and criticism. It isn't PC to walk around telling folks you're "gifted." And there isn't a better label for just what you are, nor do most people understand what the label actually means. In the end, it's not boastful or prideful; it's shameful.

But saying it out loud, talking about it for the first time, well, ever? It was so incredibly satisfying. I could physically feel my shoulders loosen and my chest open up.

A short time after the interview was over, I found myself thinking a pretty radical thought:

There is nothing wrong with you.

Say WHAT?!? And now I find myself wondering: What would life look like if I chose to believe that? (Judging from how I feel right now, pretty dang good. Pretty. Dang. Good.)

Image via

Cheers x

Thursday, June 21, 2012

mooshy belly bunny

Many moons ago, I made this little guy as a present for my godson. He turned out so dang cute that I couldn't help but make one for myself, too!

So many of my colleagues and neighbors are pregnant right now, and I find myself wishing I had a stockpile of bunnies for gift giving. I find it so hard to justify buying fabric and craft supplies when I know just how much I have back in Chicago. Not to mention I'll have access to all of it in less than a month! Mothers, babies, and bunnies alike will just have to wait for now ;)

Click the link above for a full tutorial on how to make your own "mooshy belly bunny," from Chez Beeper Bebe.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

watch this: how to be a dad

Thanks to my own dad for always having a "lipstick-less mouth" and never saying "toodles." I love you, el Gordo! Happy Father's Day.

Friday, June 15, 2012

no. 5

Yoga is also good therapy.

See all posts in this series here.

(Image via)

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

one track mind: combination pizza hut and taco bell

For Andy, in honor of one whole year as married folk! (This was our first dance song at our wedding. Long story.)

Monday, June 11, 2012

and then there were two

That's right, this former cat hater (or at least "strong disliker") is basically a convert now! At least, I love our cats. Of which we now have two.

Lulu was a stray that wandered into the play area outside my classroom last week. (The kids actually gave her the name.) Yesterday when I got to work, something was clearly wrong -- poor Lulu could hardly stand up and just wasn't her usual joyous self. We already had a vet appointment scheduled for Abbey, so of course (sentimental, over-sensitive being that I am), I brought Lulu home and took her along to see the doc. Good thing, too, as she had a fever and was severely dehydrated. After lots of cuddling and kneading and some antibiotics, she's already doing much better. 

As my mom said, "It's a good thing Andy loves you."

It's true, because let's face it: Lulu's not going anywhere now :)

Saturday, June 9, 2012

rose-colored (nerd) glasses

The thing I'm most excited for this summer?

Ooh! I know, I know! And the answer is . . . 

Prepping for next school year!

(In between days by the pool, of course ;) )

I've always had the nerd gene, but it appears I have the teacher-nerd gene as well. After a couple days of do-nothing freedom (and I mean the weekend, as school is actually still in session for a couple more weeks here . . . but half the class has stopped coming . . . and I've finished all my reports . . .), I've been researching classroom layouts, center activities, conscious discipline, and more, dreaming up themes and schemes for the year ahead.  (And by "researching," I mean Googling blogs and pinning like a fiend.)

Normally I don't like to own up to my preschool teacher identity, because I don't like the stereotypes so often associated with it. But the truth is, I've had one of the BEST years. One of the hardest, most amazing, most spectacular years of my LIFE. I'm not sure I've ever bonded as much with 22 little people as I have with this group of kids. They have been the light of my life most days, and I'm so very thankful for each and every one of them. Our classroom became its own magical world. It will be hard to leave the safety and warmth of that place.

PS - For any other teacher-nerds out there, the All-in-One Organizers from Thirty-One (my cousin sells their products) have been my life-saver this year. They are the perfect size for file folders, hold a TON, and make it so easy to transport stuff any which way you like. Excellent for a teacher like me with no desk and limited shelf space. I know I sound like an ad/mom/dork, but I really do love and use these daily. And no, my cousin doesn't know I'm giving her a shout out ;)

Monday, June 4, 2012

mock-ups (don't mock)

Ooh, I do love a good project!

Helping my dad out with design ideas for his a Capella groups (he's a high school music teacher*), and this is what I've come up with so far. Sort of a retro-meets-modern vibe, but channeling slightly different eras (Depression-era chic for the girls and Mad Men-goes-mainstream for the boys). Feels good to have something creative to latch my brain onto now that school is winding down. Thanks, Dad!

*This does not even begin to convey what he does. For example, his Men's Chorale group has had upwards of ninety guys in it, including State Championship-winning football players. I rest my case.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

in the meantime

Marilyn Monroe, 1949, via Historiful

Some days . . . life just flows right on through you, clean and good and sparkling with a sense of rightness. Everything is in its place and you are in your place and you don't even think two thoughts about it because you're too busy being.

Other days . . . the words ain't coming and your husband keeps interrupting and even if you can see the rocky path beneath your feet you keep tripping over everything, including your own shoelaces, including but-there-was-nothing-but-air-down-there!, kicking up dirt and ill-will as you go.

Please tell me you know what I mean?

Today I got my hair styled up and my toenails painted orange, and that feels damn good. I ate a few servings of vegetables at dinner (including my greens) and have been chug-a-lugging water all day in the hopes of clearing up whatever skin thing this is starting to constellate on my forehead. I have reason enough for thanks and praise on this day.

But even so, the loss of balance looms: I can't find my footing (but hey, you're not falling!), I still don't know just what I'm "supposed to" be (wait, is this it?!). Can't seem to rest easy in the questions, in the knowing it'll sort itself out one way or another. 

Because it always does.

You distract yourself for a while, roll with the ups and downs of the seemingly inevitable drama, and meanwhile life is happening, going on right there all the time whether you notice or not. So small, so clickety-clacking-right-along in the background, the custodian of your big ideas, the long-haul trucker of your meant-to-be's, steady steady 1-2-3, until . . . 

BOOM. You see. You're there. For the first time, the fifth time, the twenty-sixth time, you snap into it: Into the moment, the perfection before you, the rightness that is always-and-ever-shall-be.

But for me, for now, there's the meantime.