Sunday, September 8, 2013

Lunches for the Whole Family

We are trying to all take our lunches to school or work on Monday through Thursday each week. On Fridays, Doc has academics and lunch is provided. On Fridays, I eat lunch at Mazzio’s with the rest of the teachers at my school as our week end celebration. Little Bird takes her lunch every day to do school.
We set this lunch goal for TWO very important reasons:
#1 Taking your lunch is cheaper than buying it at school/going out to grab lunch
#2 Taking your lunch is healthier than take out/pick up/ready made options
The biggest secret to doing this is that we prepare every side dish on Sunday after we get groceries.
Doc and I’s Sunday Night Lunch Prep
We pick 1-2 fruits and 1-2 vegetables for the week. Then, we wash everything and split it into Take N’ Toss containers which are just about perfect for portion sizing.

I use a vis-a-vis marker to label them and put all of the side item containers in one of our drawers in the refrigerator that is reserved for lunch items. I use small containers to provide “dips” for the fruits and vegetables, which are normally either hummus or plain Greek yogurt.
Little Bird’s Sunday Night Lunch Prep
To prepare things for Little Bird, I fill these amazing apple sauce pouches. I used to purchase the pouches at the store that were disposable. I found the price of the packs of 4 squeezable apple sauces to be a bit overwhelming. Over $1.00 for a side item for Little Bird’s lunches was a bit more than I wanted to spend. I found reusable pouches online. Squooshi pouches work amazingly well! They are easy to clean and I’ve already broken even on cost. I DID write “DO NOT THROW AWAY” on the lids and pouches to prevent any issues with them being tossed in the trash at school.

I buy large, organic apple sauce containers and send these pouches in my daughter’s lunch. I prep the pouches on Sunday and then refill as we go through out the week.
I love the Planetbox system and so do her teachers! At her age, lots of children still need help opening different parts of their lunches, but I can pack everything in divided compartments that all open when she opens the box.
Also, Little Bird is doing an amazing job of packing her own lunches. She helps pick the foods she’d like to eat and where they go. I use these silicon muffin molds to divide up foods (and make them bright and pretty).

With as much done ahead of time as possible, all we have to do is stick to our routine.
1. ) So our evening routine is generally that Little Bird and I make dinner.
2.) Doc comes home and we eat dinner together at the table.
3.) We all work together to clean the kitchen. Doc does the dishes and cleans up the counters. I pack entrees for Doc and I’s lunches as I put away leftover food from dinner as we often take leftovers. Otherwise, I make wraps, sandwiches, or other options for lunch. Then I simply grab 1 fruit, 1 vegetable, and 1 dip for each of us from the fridge and throw them in the lunch bags.
4.) Little Bird sprays the table down and wipes it off. When she finishes, she comes into the kitchen and helps me pack her lunch.
That means that in less than ten minutes, we normally have the kitchen clean, food put away, and lunches made and in the fridge for the next day.
We are on week 3 of this and so far it’s gone really well, but we definitely plan well and make sure we stick to our routine.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Simplifying Housework


Doc works. I work. Little Bird goes to school full time. We are exhausted in the evenings. By the weekend we just want to spend all our time relaxing and enjoying each other. Let’s just say that none of us are ever in the mood for housework.

So before I went back to work, we did a big overhaul of the house. We reorganized everything. We cleaned out closets and cabinets and pantries and erred on the side of minimalism.

Little Bird was given a chore chart to ensure that I spent less time cleaning up after her and that she assumes a role as part of the family in sharing the family work.

We set goals to keep the kitchen clean and the house de-cluttered during the week by actually cleaning as we went daily and not allowing ourselves to get sloppy.

So Sunday is our “work day”. Work for us means dusting, sweeping, vacuuming, and laundry. Now that we are on our 4th Sunday of preparing for the week, I’m happy to say that we’ve kept it manageable. We normally get the “work” done in less than an hour and then just have to change laundry loads throughout the day. So far, so good. Let’s just hope we keep it up.

Back to Work, Back to School, Refocus and Embrace Planning the Future


It has been a while since my last post, but rest assured plenty has been going on.

I think too much to put in one post.

So look forward to posts on:

  • Lunches for the Whole Family
  • Quick and healthy dinners you can make EVEN on a week night
  • Simplifying Housework when everyone works full time
  • Fall recipes I adore

And then hopefully once I get all of those finished, I’ll have some time to post about the difficulty of envisioning a future after child loss and how Doc and I have overcome the reluctance to pursue and seek out plans for our future. The next year will bring some GIANT changes for our family and I can’t wait until we can start announcing those changes.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Rocky Mountain National Park - 2013


Doc, Little Bird, and I just returned from our weeklong vacation to the Rockies!  This trip was very different for us because it was the first time Doc has been able to go camping with Little Bird and because Little Bird is now potty trained, so there was a lot of putting on shoes and jackets mid-night and trekking to the bathroom.

We hiked from Bear Lake up to Nymph, Dream, and Emerald Lake. The footing is loose on these hikes so I told Little Bird that we couldn’t carry her because it wasn’t safe. She’s too big for a backpack carrier now, so she just had to tough it out.

We drove along Trail Ridge Road up into the alpine area and admired the views. We also sucked on lifesavers and drank lots of water to cope with the altitude changes.


We made s’mores. Frequently.

I built an awesome fire. Doc built the other fires that were also cool…but maybe not quite so ragingly cool as mine.

We hiked up to Alberta Falls where Little Bird did some bouldering and rock climbing. Seeing the “happy water” as she put it together was pretty incredible. This was easily my favorite thing.

We saw bears, elk, deer, marmots, ground squirrels, chipmunks, coyotes, dozens of birds, and amazing wildflowers.











We celebrated my aunt and cousin’s birthdays.

We drove A LOT.

We slept in a nice little tent.


The best thing about this trip though was how much better it made me feel about the time we’re making up with Little Bird.I love that my daughter is the type to want to climb boulders and be amazed at chipmunks and become irate when we explain that people killed beavers to make hats (her response was that beavers don’t want to be hats and want to be with their families and alive). I love that she can do 12 hours in a car like a champ. I love that she ignores the bridge and decides to try hoping across stones instead. I love that she has an incredible sense of adventure and still wants to hold my hand while we hike. I love that she sleeps in a tent like she sleeps at home and when I’m carrying her back from the bathroom at 2 AM, scanning for bears and trying to get back without falling over, that I can point at the sky and she gasps and says “there are so many stars! They are beautiful!”


Even though she is still grieving and has been having a harder time controlling her anger and sadness at losing her brother, she finds joy. She is in awe of the world. She loves fiercely. I’m proud of her.



Saturday, June 29, 2013

I am a Badass

Let me begin with a giant thank you to my friend Lizzy! I recently had a status update on Facebook warning that I was experiencing some grief relapse and I may be reflecting that on my updates in the near future so I gave warning. Then came a message asking for my address and a few days later, a lovely book.

“You Are a Badass” by Jen Sincero

The humor and frankness of this author has been exactly what I needed. I am a badass.

I honestly don’t exercise to be skinny. I do it to feel like a badass. When I feel strong I feel like a badass.

I wear high heels because the way I walk in them makes me feel confident and strong. I feel like I can take on anything.

I do things like the Warrior Dash, marathon vacationing, summer reading programs, and delve into home cooking because doing those things makes me feel strong. Confident. Capable. And darn it, it makes me feel like a badass. I made a freaking quiche. What could be more badass?!


Life dealt me a crappy blow. I can’t let it be my excuse. I can’t sit in the dark and be sad. I can’t not take chances or seek happiness because I know all to well that life can take deeply. I can’t.

I do it for me. Because I’m awesome. Not just because I took care of Rowan or because my family has someone managed to hold together or because we still find joy. I’ve been awesome for a long time.

I’m awesome because I never apologized for being a talented actress back in high school when that was my thing. I never apologized for being book smart either, despite the fact that the boys in my class didn’t like it. I’m awesome because I wasn’t looking to find love or a spouse when I met my husband, but I didn’t run away from it. I embraced the chance of a real partnership. I’m awesome because when I got sick and had to drop out of college, I got better, got a job, and worked while going to school until I could get scholarships back and go to school full time. I’m awesome because I mothered Little Bird. I’m awesome because I started student teaching two weeks after she was born because I refused to settle and was willing to work to have it all. I graduated with an infant in tow. I got a job teaching in an impossible hiring climate. I’m awesome because I am a great teacher and I am improved by working at a school full of them. I’m awesome because I carried a child I knew I would bury one day to full term despite the stresses that could have shortened that pregnancy. I’m awesome because I mothered Rowan. I’m awesome because we made his life worth it and loved him. I’m awesome for looking death in the face when it took my son from me and I AM FREAKING AWESOME because I get out of bed every morning, smile without faking it, laugh and share joy, and move foreword, looking for new ways to be a badass.

I’m awesome because I keep reaching. I keep searching and exploring. I keep loving. I keep living.  I’ve surrounded myself with awesome people a who have reminded me how awesome I am when I needed it, even when it’s sending me a book to remind me that I’m a badass when I start to forget. I’m going to make it through this period of grief relapse like I made it through the original one. I’m going to lean in. I’m going to be open to my thoughts and feelings. I’m going to move through it this time like I did last time. Like a badass who loved their son and misses him deeply.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Off the Bucket List: Summer Reading Program


Ok, first off, I would totally be lying through my teeth if I said that Little Bird read these books. I read them all to her. We reread a lot of them. She would “read” pages she had memorized OR (my favorite) use the pictures and flip through the book giving me a retelling in her own words. Some of them we read enough she could just about recite the whole thing. So essentially, the summer reading program was an opportunity for us to learn about the library system, get some new books to read (and get rid of when I got sick of rereading them), and get excited about some solid non-fiction books.

Today we happened to magically show up at the Library right before the scheduled Story Time. Mom win! I love it when luck makes it look like I’m better at filling up the summer days with good activities. Today was all about bugs. They sang songs, did storytelling with pictures, read several books, and danced. Score! By the way, the story time room is amazing. You can see the animal mural and there is a giant tree they go inside for story time.


After story time, we picked out our next six books and turned in our completed 20 list for our prize.

Here are the 20 books we have read so far this summer. Any with a * by it is one I loved and highly recommend.

  1. Little Owl Lost*
  2. The Little Red Hen*
  3. The Bremen Town Musicians
  4. Who Needs Love?
  5. The Moon Might Be Milk*
  6. Girl, You’re Amazing!*
  7. Over the Green Hills
  8. It Looked Like Spilt Milk*
  9. The Toll-Bridge Troll
  10. Wabi Sabio
  11. Slippery, Slimy Baby Frogs* (lots of mating information in here, FYI)
  12. Iron Hans
  13. Lady Bug, Lady Bug
  14. Different Like Coco*
  15. Creepy Things are Scaring Me
  16. Home Sweet Home*
  17. If the Dinosaurs Came Back
  18. Who Says Women Can’t be Doctors?
  19. What is an Athlete?
  20. The King’s Stilts*

So, the library dished out their prizes today to a very enthusiastic 3 year old. Here is Little Bird holding her 20 book prize of a Prairie Dog she named Sophia.


Friday, June 14, 2013

Off the Bucket List: Kansas City Vacation


Kansas City was meant to be our “easy vacation” compared to DC/New York where we were hardcore drilling through all of the things to do and see.

I inherited a crazy type A personality with regards to vacationing from my father. I want to be packed with a detailed itinerary a week before we leave. I don’t want to waste time on vacations trying to decide what to do when or searching for a place we can purchase forgotten items. After all my planning still led to a repurchase of everything for Little Bird when her suitcase was stolen in DC, I made a conscious effort to “lighten the hell up” about this trip. We packed the day before. I made a general list of things in the area that looked fun and that was it!

Day 1 – We got up. Got around. Loaded up the car after breakfast with my dad and sisters, and then drove at a leisurely pace to Kansas City. When we got there it was almost dinner time, so we needed a place to eat. I used my favorite kid travel website This website is run by Disney and makes finding food/hotels/attractions for specific age groups pretty easy in most major cities in the USA. I picked “Fritz’s Railroad Restaurant”.

Fritz’s Railroad Restaurant

As soon as you get here, you will discover that this restaurant is all about the trains and the food is just a part of it. They serve American food like hamburgers, hotdogs, and grilled cheese with fries, shakes, etc. The food was good, but not amazing. You go to this restaurant because the railways lining the restaurant support train engines that bring your food to a platform above your table, which then lowers. There are trains all over the restaurant including a big engine out front. It was definitely an exciting start to our trip. I’d say kids from infants to probably 6 would really enjoy this restaurant. That said, I’m 26 and I really enjoyed this restaurant. This restaurant is inside Crown Center.

Crown Center

This is like a mall for kids. There are lots of kid friendly stores, a kid friendly live theater, fun themed restaurants, and an area where exhibits set up. Currently there was a free Curious George exhibit featuring lots of science activities. If you visit Crown Center and spend $25 at any of the businesses, you get 3 free hours of parking at the parking garage.


Day 2 we got up. I was feeling a bit stressed and crazy because we didn’t have a plan. I wanted a plan! Where was the plan?!?! So I told Little Bird that today, Dad was the leader. Every time she asked questions about where to go or what we were doing, I defaulted. Doc decided we were going to Legoland and Sea Life.  I relaxed. It was extremely nice to know I wasn’t responsible for decisions. So nice in fact, that we decided Day 3, Little Bird could be the leader….more to come on that.


As a parent, this was a waste of money. It was expensive. The rides were too scary for Little Bird. They had a big playland you needed socks for. If you don’t have socks, you can buy them for $5…so just bring socks. Not knowing that there was a sock requirement, we pretty much just played with legos. The novelty of the place was fun, but I don’t know if we’ll go again. Little Bird really liked it, but I feel like our time could have been better spent.

Crayola Café and Store

The Crayola Café and Store located inside Crown Center had a really nice menu. The food was healthier than a lot of other options and all delicious. The décor was fun and you could do some pretty intense coloring while you waited. Good value for the price.








Sea Life*

This aquarium was wonderful! There were lots of “interactive aquariums” where you could walk under or in the middle of the fish. Almost everything was at a level where Little Bird could see it herself. They had a quiz you could complete by scratching off the correct multiple choice answer and exchange for a medal at the end of the aquarium. Doc, Little Bird, and I all really enjoyed it.

*If you go to either of these places, buy tickets online before you go or you will have to wait OUTSIDE to go in one family at a time to purchase tickets. We waited 30 minutes outside before we were allowed in the building.

Day 3 – Little Bird is the boss

So we decided to try something out and let Little Bird be the leader. In the morning, we told her she was the leader so she could pick what we did. We could go to the water park or to the science center. She decided we should go to the water park and get cupcakes. So we packed up for the water park! She got to decide that we would stop at the QT to get drinks before we went. She picked which attractions we went to and when at the park. She also got to pick where we ate for lunch. After the waterpark, we were too tired to go eat cupcakes so we just had pizza at Imo’s. She did a great job as leader.

Schlitterbahn Water Park Kansas City

Ok, to be honest, it’s about 6 slides and some pools. But the pools are pretty awesome for kids. There were lots of slides and waterfall mushrooms. They had a “lazy river” that pulsed waves out. This was Little Birds favorite and I’m pretty sure we did it 8 times. The food there wasn’t horribly priced and there was plenty of shaded tables for us to sit at. It’s more expensive ($110 for our family for 1 day) but we thought it was a good splurge.

As the leader, Little Bird got to take the picture.

Day 4

Science City

This was easily my favorite place. There were a lot of hands on activities and it was fun for Doc and I too! There were tons of different themed areas, from space, to optical illusions, to dinosaurs, to wildlife, to trains, to a 3D printer…awesome. Plus they had a Aliens and Androids exhibit that was ridiculously fun for Doc and I. This was one of my favorite places to go. It’s located inside of Union Station.

So not the laid back vacation we’d thought about, but still an amazing time. We may have walked in the door exhausted, but Little Bird just smiled and said “Let’s go on another vacation tomorrow!”

…guess we’re doing it right.

Friday, June 7, 2013

My Weight Story

Ok, so a long long time ago, when I started college, I weighted between 120 and 125lb. I ate healthily and was pretty active, but I was a stick.


In college, I gained what I like to call my Freshman 10. I weighed between 130 and 135. I ate pretty crappily, but I was active and felt like I actually looked far healthier than I had before. People didn’t ask me if I had an eating disorder or bug me about being underweight anymore. I liked it.

Then I got pregnant, gained some weight, had a miscarriage, and became immediately pregnant afterwards. I gained 30lb by the day before Evelyn’s birth. 165lbs.

After Little Bird got here, we were a busy family! I was trying to work really hard to finish college and graduate as well as find a job and Doc was in medical school. Around our daughter’s 1st birthday we decided to do p90x to get both of us back in shape. I had managed to get my weight down to about 135-140, but wasn’t as toned as I wanted to be.

We got 60 days into our 90 day workout challenge, and OOPS! Pregnant again! So I backed off the workouts and just continued to stay active.

With Rowan, I gained 30 lbs and ended up right at 170 when all 9lb 3oz of him was born.

I tried to eat healthily, especially since I was pumping while he was in the hospital. But sitting by someone’s bedside for 4 months doesn’t allow you to exercise much. When Rowan was home, I was a full time nurse mom with my daughter to take care of as well. I didn’t sleep, let alone exercise. I couldn’t leave the house to go grocery shopping so I was at the mercy of whatever someone could bring to my house. I hit about 140 and stayed there. I didn’t look bad, but I knew I wasn’t fit and I desperately wanted to get back in really good shape, ALL the way back to my original pre-pregnancy weight.

SO…I don’t mind my stretch marks, and I apologize if they offend you, but here is the change I saw and wanted to see in my body.

I started my really serious work in January. I worked out as often as I could and started really watching what I ate. I cut out a lot of extra carbs and tried to up my fruits and vegetables. I drank more water. I started at 137lb. I knew that 135 might be the best I could do, but it took me two months to get there. This was me at 135lb in March.


Then I really ramped it up. I started Les Mills Combat training and found my groove. Weight training added into the cardio really started giving me the toning results I wanted and I FELT strong again. This was me at the beginning of May, and you can tell by my expression that I was thinking “not bad, lady, not bad at all.” This was me at 132.


Since then I’ve been maintaining my healthy foods and exercising. I bike with a trailer to take Little Bird to and from the playground and dance class. I do weight training when I watch TV. I try to get a little cardio in now and then even though it’s harder now that it’s summer and my daughter is home all day. Two weeks ago, I hit it. 130lb. My weight I love and feel healthiest and strongest at. The weight where I love my pictures and the way clothing fits. Normal weight according to BMI for me should be somewhere between 18.5 and 24.9. My current weight puts me at 21.6. I definitely don’t feel like I need to lose anymore! I’m there!

It’s been 18 months since I gave birth to Rowan. It’s been a solid 5-6 months of really hard work to lost 7 lbs. I’m happy that I kept at it. I didn’t think I could drop down to 130 again, but I did it healthily and am proud that I stuck to it!

Just to compare, here is me in 2005 and then me now, 7 years and two 9lb + babies later in 2013.

Me in 2005


Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Rain, Rain, Go Away

Seriously. I have more cabin fever than my daughter.

I just want the ground to be dry enough for a blanket and the sky to be quiet enough for an outdoor nap.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Off the Summer Bucket List: Renaissance Faire



The first day of June was a day I’d be really looking forward to.

In my middle school years, I went every year. My friends and I would dress up and caravan down to Muskogee where we would dance, eat, watch shows, and shop.

Now I’m “an adult” (yeah, I still feel a need to put that in quotes) and my sisters have hit their middle school years. So it seemed only fitting to share the tradition!

We ended up with two cars because 9 people would not fit in my mom’s van. Doc drove the other vehicle (and took the picture). The girls who travelled with us are long time family friends. Our families travelled to China together. We have always seen each other at least once a year for China Heritage Camp, but now that my family is back in Tulsa, we get to see more of these kiddos that I’ve always kind of viewed as nieces (except the ones I’m literally a sister to…I view them as sisters).

Some of the girls wanted to dress up, some of them weren’t too sure about it. We arrived early at the Faire and headed in to watch a Juggler and start the Queen’s Quest, where you follow riddle clues and collect the Queen’s hair ribbons which have been scattered around the grounds.

We saw some really neat goods in tents, smelled some amazing foods. Some of the girls shot bows and arrows at the archery range. All of them got up on stage with the Gypsy Camp and learned a few belly dancing moves. We danced around the May pole, chatted with the Queen, feasted on fresh bread and turkey legs, tried “real” root beer (the girls were not fans), one of the girls was almost drafted as a servant, we saw a 33lb bunny, a giant and beautiful owl, hawks, horses, peacocks, and a parade.

I had a blast. I think the girls did too.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Summer Bucket List 2013

1.) Oklahoma Renaissance Faire

2.) Story time in the Park

3.) Woolaroc Kid’s Fest

4.) Oxley Nature Center Children’s Walk

5.) Go get Grandma’s Puppy

6.) Kansas City, MO Family vacation

7.) Complete Summer Reading Program

8.) Midsummer Party

9.) Camping in the Rockies

10.) Rowan Remembrance Party

11.) Bike/Picnic on Riverside Day

12.) Take Doc on Adventure Date

Preparing for Summer

Today is Little Bird’s last day of school, which means that I am working hard at home doing things I don’t like to do with her at home.

Child Free Preferably Activities

1.) Cleaning out child’s room for donations.

Sometimes I like to do things like toys with Little Bird at home. I like her to be a part of choosing toys that we are ready to give other children a chance to play with. Sometimes it can be hard, but she always impresses by making good choices when she is a part of the process. I do NOT like to clean out clothes with her. Ever. If she loves a dress, it doesn’t matter if the sleeves are so tight her arms turn purple, she will insist that it still fits and it’s her favorite and it’s beautiful. So in the last few days, I cleaned out all of her clothing by discarding all of the clothing items that were riddled with holes or worn and donating the clothing that was gently used.

2.) Cleaning out my bedroom.

Do you remember how much you liked to get into your mom’s shoes/jewelry/clothes/jump on her bed/knock over laundry baskets, ya know, all things that impede the process of producing a clean and neatly reorganized bedroom.

3.) Cleaning out the study.

Little Bird LOVES coloring on papers she finds out. Not the best idea to sort papers and supplies with her armed with a marker. It’s a swipe and dash to a quiet corner to destroy things I’d like to keep intact and sorted.


My favorite project I’ve worked on this last week was Little Bird’s closet. I resorted her toys, which I do every few months to make sure that things she is interested in and finds challenging are readily accessible and easy to put away. Since we don’t allow TV during daylight hours during the summertime, I want lots of choices available for her. You can only “color” so much.

Tomorrow starts a long, fun summer. There will be some truly rough days ahead with the anniversary of my son’s death coming up faster than I’d like to remember. But it’s also a summer of celebrating the fight. Our family is still together. We have a lot of life ahead of us.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Road Trips this Summer? Learn something handy!


Little Bird has been working hard to learn her 50 states at school. She has been learning them in Alphabetical order. She was chanting them in the backseat when I suddenly got super excited about teaching her a song I learned in elementary to help me remember the 50 states in order. So now she’s learning it. She’s about halfway through but we have road trips to work on it this summer! Here’s the song for those interested.

AND – if you are a super star, here are the states and capitals courtesy of Animaniacs!

Animaniacs also has a wonderful multiplication song and “Nations of the World” song.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Some Friendships are Like Tides…

…and you can’t keep them from rolling out no matter how hard you try.

The older I get the more I treasure friendships. The more I really appreciate the ones that are full and healthy and thriving. The more I am frustrated when friendships start to wane.

When we see movies, there is a long theme of BFFs. Friends that you grow up with, have houses next to, grow old with, and even have sisterhoods with in your old age (YA YA!). It seems common place to have sleepover and braid your hair, talk about boys and your first kiss, share a limo to prom, go to college with, have them be your maid of honor, end up pregnant together, raise your kids together, retire together, all with the same friend.

That isn’t how my life has been. I remember my first “best friend” from 2nd grade. I remember my next “best friends” from 5th-7th grade when my middle grade years turned me into a kind of self-righteous “can’t be friends with everyone” jerk and I mean-girl broke up with a girl who was a wonderful friend to me. The other one moved.

I remember 7th-12th grade where I met what I thought were those BFFs. Then I moved to Texas. We went to different colleges. I got married and had kids. Ya know, different directions in life.

I made a very few good friends in Texas. Those 2 years built a couple of friendships with people I love to see or hear from, despite none of them living nearby.

I met friends in college. Amazing friends. Some I am still close to. Some have become distant. Some I only see at weddings (PLEASE someone else get married so we can do this again).

I have made new friends since. Friends from work. Friends from the heart community. Friends from Doc’s medical school and residency.

And you know what? I’ll probably see several of those fade out after residency ends too.

But here’s the amazing thing. Those best friends from 5th-7th grade? We’ve reconnected thanks to Facebook. I’m overjoyed to follow what’s going on in their life and see their beautiful children. The girls I thought were BFFs? We still talk some. I still love hearing from them. The college friends? I like seeing them too.

There is only one person who I expect to be with me forever. One BFF. One person I know that I will take our kids to the park with, and maybe go on vacations with, and sit on the porch when we’re old with. My husband. Everyone else can fade in and out and I’ll be so happy when we’re really clicking and enjoying our friendships, and probably a little sad when we no longer are.

I don’t look at friends I’ve become distant to over the last year badly. I’ve had a lot of major changes in my life. So have many of them. Sometimes you grow apart. That doesn’t mean anyone did anything wrong. It doesn’t mean you need to find new friends and tell them to screw off because it’s not easy anymore. Sure, it might not be “fixable” right now, but maybe it doesn’t need to be.

Maybe we just need a few years to reconnect, and be excited to follow their life again. Maybe even be a part of it once more someday.

When the friends you have let you down, when they head in a direction you can’t follow, or you can’t really connect with them, or when things just are so stressful because your relationship is disappointing now, it doesn’t mean you need to cut them out. Maybe it just means you don’t force it.

It means it’s time to move forward, reconnect with old friends, make some new ones, and let that relationship ease out, so it can come back in later when you won’t disappoint each other. When it’s time.

Some friendships might not rekindle later. And that’s ok. Nothing beautiful can last forever. But that doesn’t mean that the time I’ve had with each of my close friends, whenever we were close in life, doesn’t still bring warmth to my heart when I think about it.

Monday, May 6, 2013


My daughter twists her hair when she’s sleepy. She twists her hair in her sleep and as all hair twisters know, when it gets too tightly wrapped, it can tear out. In clumps.

Essentially, we’ve had our daughters hair cut several times to try to balance out the clumps of missing hair. What else can you do? She does it in her sleep! I can’t sit by her bed and keep her hand out of her hair…

…but I can put a hat on her.

Which is exactly what I did. Now she sleeps in a soft knit hat that has animal ears. She plays with the ear on her hat, not her hair, which is by the way, finally growing in.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Day 5-6: New York City

Part of the reason for our trip to the Northeast was a scouting mission. We are approaching the end of Doc’s 7 years of medical training here in Tulsa. We have a year left and it is time to think about the future. Our plans include the possibility of graduate school for me and a desire to live somewhere different for a few years.

One of the strengths of living in the Northeast is their transit system. Amtrak is awesome. Metro railways are awesome. The prospect of living a life that was not automobile dependent is intriguing.

So we decided to try it out authentically. We woke up early Thursday. We took the Metro to Union Station. We boarded a train on a platform (and I quelled my impulse to yell Harry Potter lines while dragging Little Bird along the train). Train travel is amazing. You can get up and move around. There is a food car. There is no take off and landing. Also, you don’t have to show up two hours early for your train. In fact, I was shocked at the lack of formality in train travel. We didn’t have to pass through security. We didn’t check our luggage (we loaded it on the train car with us) and the only do random ID checks. This type of travel with a child was fun. Extremely fun.


Once we arrived at Penn Station in New York (which was icky…compared to Grand Central), we took the Subway to our hotel in Times Square. Luggage on the Subway in NYC is NOT luggage on the Metro in DC. We will take cabs with luggage in the future, despite the extra cost.

We met our friend, Amanda, at our hotel and spent the rest of the day with her, and later her husband, Pat.


Suffice it to say, Little Bird and Amanda are now #1 best friends.


Let me say, that I am extremely happy we went to New York last fall without our daughter. Even though we had an amazing guide, we were far more comfortable in the city with her since we knew our way around a bit better than first timers.


We had to eat some New York Pizza.









Central Park










Disney Store at Times Square





I mentioned that Little Bird and Amanda are BFFs, right?


Battery Park to see the Statue of Liberty





Walking to Rockefeller Center and the NBC Store