witifulramblings

Archive for the ‘Family’ Category

Day 107: Malaysia Flight 370: Two Parents

In Children, Family, Father, Happiness, Kids, Love, Marriage, Mother, Parenting, Travel on March 16, 2014 at 3:15 am

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{photo via google search}

Amidst all the news reports surrounding the tragic mystery of Malaysia flight 370, there is one story I find to be most tragic. I guess it strikes a chord with me because it echoes one of my deepest fears–leaving my child to get on a plane and never seeing him again. When Muktesh Mukherjee and his wife Xiaomo Bai got on flight 370, they were intending to vacation and left their two young boys with their grandma. Now those two beautiful boys have to wonder if they will ever see their parents again. I cannot imagine what they must be feeling, I cannot imagine what Muktesh and his wife must have felt the moment they new something was ‘wrong.’

On my last vacation to the UK, I had a panic attack the entire trip (airplane ride and vacation). My partner thought I was legitimately insane for shaking violently when turbulence bounced us around on our way to Italy. But what was really happening, I was thinking of my beautiful little e, I was thinking how much he needs me, and I was praying nothing would happen to me because we need each other.

My heart aches tonight for those two little boys. My heart aches for those parents because I had a glimpse of what they must have felt–times a million. As we pray for their safe return to their little ones, let us all remember how lucky we are to have our love ones present with us in our lives. Sometimes we can forget how special they are when they’re right in front of us.

little e you played a great baseball game today and I love you for it.

to my other love, I love you to the moon around the stars and back again…

to my Ini, thank you for lying against my back while I sleep, you make the best fluffy cuddler…

love, love, love…

and to the Mukherjee family, you’re in our thoughts. I hope they soon find answers because two parents need their two boys.

a whit.

Day 89: Belated Father’s Day Post

In Children, Family, Kids, life, Love on June 18, 2013 at 5:37 am

This post is late.

I’ve been making list lately and then I try to cross off each thing as I get it done. Blogging has been on my list for the past several days, but I haven’t managed to make it here till now.

Father’s Day was a great one, with my mom and sister out of town, I got to take my Dad to breakfast at his favorite spot in midtown.  Today, as I visited the blogs of my friends, and read all of their Father’s Day posts, it really brought things into perspective.  Their comments, combined with the experience of my own loving Dad, reminded me of the important role a Father plays in his children’s lives.

While we were at breakfast, my Dad commented, “they only made Father’s Day as an afterthought of Mother’s Day.”  I laughed remembering a card I gave my boyfriend last year that said, “Know why Father’s Day is in June? They didn’t want the Dad’s to feel left out.” But really, a Father is so important to his children.  A good one knows exactly what makes their kids happy, sad, and everything in between.  Just like a mom.  A good one never fears grounding their child for bad behavior because they know they will love them for it one day.  A good one takes the time to build up his family and strengthen them through support.  A good one isn’t afraid to show his emotion and care.  A good one can’t wait to throw a ball or play a game in between work. 

My Dad and I reminisced about what a determined, bossy child I was.  I used to make up these “game shows” where everyone in the family was required to participate.  There is actual footage of me commanding each family member to “go,” which meant for them to read their rehearsed part at the exact moment of direction. If it didn’t go as planned, exactly, all hell broke loose.

A good Dad puts on the Wheel of Fortune name tag and lets his ten year-old daughter boss him around for a bit.  A good Dad remembers things like “devil child game shows” and laughs wholeheartedly.  

Thank you Dad for being a good Dad.

a whit. who has grown out of her bossypants.

 

Day 82: Cabo Wabo {The un-Spring Breakers}

In Blogging, Family, Fun, Happiness, Travel, UK on March 14, 2013 at 6:43 am

Whirlwind trip to Mexico.

My mom put it nicely, “So you went to Mexico for the weekend to get sunburned and come home.”

Sun.BURN.ed is correct. We managed to make it to Cabo after a whirlwind flight, one that Konk thought we wouldn’t make but we did, out of SFO. I think our morning went a little something like this, “Hon, it’s 5 a.m., the alarm didn’t go off.” British response: “get the *&^! out of bed!” and we were off! We managed to make it to the airport where Haz (otherwise known as Konk’s brother) maintained his casual gaze for an American wife.

{on a side note: it looks like he might have found one, from Georgia, not to be mistaken for the country bordering Turkey, yes, I’m talking Atlanta–she has been appropriately dubbed “Gobble Gobble”}

We finally made it to Mexico after a flight that involved lots of sleeping. Upon arrival, let the games begin–we grabbed a few Modelos and piled into the bus. Next, we nearly died. Truth be told, our airport shuttle driver almost, and I mean very much almost, plowed us into another vehicle at about 80 mph. I was thankful for my third row back placement but man–I saw my pretty face flash before my eyes. It then appeared that my wonderful boyfriend farted, loudly, next to an Israeli couple stationed side us. Turns out Mexican shuttle buses have no rear suspension which was apparently the source of the “noise.” I am still a bit skeptical, but he did fess up to the one at the check out counter of Marina de Fiesta so…We started our trip with a bang (still not confirmed) and definitely ended with one too.

Somewhere in the middle we enjoyed beer, good food, a deluxe junior suite, and of course an 8 hour Marlin sport fishing trip. Captain Paco Taco Francisco–

“you wanna catch da marlin, i get you da marlin”

500 bucks later, we ended up with a 2 pound tuna {which Konk took several pictures of, at several angles, in order to increase its size visual} and some spanish mackoral. The fishing trip was really interesting, the guys {aka fisherman in training} spent most of the time.

sleeping.

I spent most of the time.

sleeping.

We’d all wake up for the occasional, ay yay yay, which meant there was a whale, or a school of dolphins, or, finally, a two pound tuna.

at about hour 7, my Konk discovered the Coppertone in the lower boat cabin. Lying down, thinking about how burned I am feeling, I watch Konk lather some on his neck and laugh.

We exit the boat, and the burn begins to settle. All three of us, swelling, bright red,

Haz ended up with the worst of it, his woman seeking took a minor detour as he feared he might scare away any potential datees with his reflective forehead. Konk and I cuddled from a one foot span and we woke up ready to return back home.

On the way back, we passed a red lobster and Haz said he’d found his new home in their front window tank.

I am currently suffering from a bout of lepresy, my face is falling off in sheets.

And that my friends is how you do Cabo.

We’re destined to return and find that Marlin.

a whit who’s feeling fried.

Day 80: …you just might miss the point

In Children, Family, Happiness, Love, Motherhood on February 28, 2013 at 8:42 am

…life’s not the breath you take, but breathing in and out that gets you through the day

ain’t what it’s all about,

you just might miss the point to run to win the race, life’s not the breaths you take but the moments that take your breath away.

Today I thought a lot about my life, and how so much of what we do in this life, the really good stuff, is compelled by the aforementioned philosophy.  That is, slowing down–we just might miss the point. 

When I first became a mother it was all about schedules, and feedings, and naps, and routines.  I think a lot of that was great but then I grew into my motherhood role and as little e grew we began to play trains, and I would teach him things, we would practice our letters and animals.  Part of learning is enjoying the process more than any ta-da moment.  As I spend more time with my Brit’s three year-old the memories of that process come to the surface.  It also reminds me how independent my 7 year-old e is now.  We’ve done a lot of slowing down lately in our household, we still accomplish things, but we find pleasure in being together and loving what were doing more than putting a tick on a list. 

Last week,

we took a helicopter flight over our city.

we went hunting.

we laughed to the point of tears.

we cuddled.

we endured a 45 minute tantrum, laughing together behind the scenes.

we held hands in the car.

we went grocery shopping with a 3 year-old.

We watched half a movie.

We ate beans on toast. {we bought a toaster}

We took a walk to the lake with e and skipped rocks.

we bought stumps of wood for 7.50$ and haggled the guy for 30 minutes.

we had a car dance party.

we team cleaned the house.

we watched the planes take off and land at the airport.

we ate cake.

The thing is, you can make all the lists in the world but without fulfillment in the doing you might as well just check it off unfulfilled. 

I am thankful today for my role as a mother.  I am thankful that I see the point more often than not.  I am thankful for the two boys that make me smile daily.  I am thankful I have a purpose and direction in my life.  I am thankful our family isn’t about winning the race–instead–we participate, truly.

a whit who finally feels whole.

Daily Cupcake: Blogs I Love

In Blogging, Blogs, Books, Children, Education, Family, Mother, Motherhood, Women, Writing on February 24, 2013 at 8:28 am

Today’s cupcake, Blogs I Love goes out to this blog–a blog about being a mom and author–two of my favorite things [although I haven’t quite accomplished the author thing, yet].  I am just waiting for my early retirement, a new macbook, and a house with an office.

The author of this blog also wrote the book Sparkly Green Earrings a novel that chronicles life and being a family…

before I became a mother I had no idea that it would be the hardest and best thing I would do in my life. that I would look at this little person and see so much of myself…my sense of humor, smile, and ability to create drama out of nothing…and I can start to think you’re just like me but you’re not, you’re your own person–you are the dream we couldn’t have imagined and I wrote this book for you. love mama

As mothers we do so many things for our children–like drive home to get a different booster seat so our 2nd grader looks cool as he drives to the school fire station field trip, and clean up dog poop so our kids can know the beauty of loving something that loves them back threefold, and go to the store and buy 7 of the same pair of shorts because they are his “favorite” and that way he won’t know he’s not wearing the same outfit everyday. There are the usual things people always mention [probably the people who don’t have kids yet]…midnight feedings, tantrums, yada yada yada.  It’s the unusual things, though, like bribing your kid to leave the toilet seat down and tricking them out of candy by saying it’s owie medicine–that’s what makes a mother. You can enter to win a free, signed copy of Melanie’s book Sparkly Green Earrings here.

sge-pin-4

a mom whit.

Day 75: I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Birthdays…

In Anthropologie, Birthday, DIY, Family, Happiness on January 7, 2013 at 8:14 am

I finally decided to open up an etsy shop.  thought it might be fun. more items to come on there.

In other news, we celebrated my mom’s birthday just yesterday, had lots of fun, and I think I’ve been deemed the family “birthday coordinator.” {lucky me, wink}

photo-96 photo-98

Birthdays have been a hot button issue for me over the last few years.  There have been some year’s of fun-filled, special-feeling ones, and then a few crappers.  I remember one year I only received one facebook “happy birthday” and that really sent me spiraling downward, “did everyone forget about me?” Imagine that, judging a birthday by its social network significance.

The recipe, it seems, to a perfect birthday involves love and happiness.  It’s not about presents {although they are nice} but rather that someone {or lots} would remember you on your special day–because everyone knows you can’t make your own day special [no fun].

This year I came home to balloons and a gift on my back doorstep from my lovely sister. I got several birthday calls and spent a wonderful weekend away with my konk in the heart of wine country. It was a remembering birthday–I’ll never forget it because it reminded me how important it is to have that kind of day.

Thank you to everyone who made my birthday special this year [a little late, I know].

better late than never.

a whit.

Day 71: I want to go back to Utah.

In Children, Family, God, Happiness, Humanity, Kids, life, Love, Mother, Parenting on September 20, 2012 at 6:45 am

That’s a phrase I never thought I’d hear myself say, but it’s true.

Oftentimes, when I tell people I lived in Utah for four years (a native Californian returned home) they tilt their head in disbelief. Then I go on to remind them (and myself) what a beautiful place Utah is. For me though, it holds so many precious memories, the biggest one being the fall–right around this very time of year. I was perusing some Utah friend’s blogs tonight, and I couldn’t help but notice all of the beautiful canyon shots, the vibrant leaves, and the visible wind gusts. This is exactly how I remember it that September 2005 when my precious boy was almost due.

I’ve spoken before about the wonderful feeling I get when Autumn arrives–it reminds me of the gift that is my little e and what a blessing God delivered to me almost seven years ago.

I can’t believe how fast the time passes, I can’t believe e is going to be seven in just a of couple days. He is my miracle, my entire life bundled up in one very witty, articulate little toe head. Today we were sitting outside Chipotle eating and he asked me, “what happens to those people that steal wishes out of fountains?” I didn’t know how to respond, so I just told him about plaza regulations and the money belonging to conglomerates that own the plaza facilities. He liked that answer. Then he responded with, “well, I did that once. I’m not going to do it again because that was someone’s wish, what if they needed it granted.” I love that he is so inquisitive and thoughtful. I’m so proud of him even when he cries for not wanting to do his spelling sentences or mad math minute.

This post was supposed to be about wanting to go back to Park City, my favorite winter space in the whole world (which I still long for), but it’s turned into something else I suppose. I wish I could go back, turn back time, live the past seven years over again, because he’s growing too fast.

I love you little e.

Three hugs. Three kisses. Happy birthday angel boy.

A whit-ing mom.

Day 69: Daring Greatly

In Esteem, Family, Happiness, Love, Women on September 14, 2012 at 3:46 am

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat. 

I don’t watch much TV, in fact I hadn’t watched TV really in the past five years.  However, I decided to get cable recently.  I still find myself rarely watching because it’s so out of habit, and I have ADD (I like to clean my floors way too often).

Anyway, awhile back I wrote this post on the topic of wholeheartedness.  I had randomly found myself listening to Brene Brown’s TED Talk, coincidentally when I popped on the TV today, which I rarely do, the Katie Couric show was featuring Brene in person.

She of course talked a lot about the topic of vulnerability and its necessity in our lives.  I’ve been thinking a lot about fear lately, I’ve felt fearful as I enter into a new life and anticipate being a recent grad school graduate.  So, I guess someone knew I needed to hear these important words about vulnerability once again.

You see, there is nothing more dangerous and scary than standing on the out skirt of our own life.  What should matter to you is not whether you succeed or fail, but that you were brave, and the people that matter in this whole experience are those who love you not in spite of your vulnerabilities but because of them.

Brene talked a lot about a concept she refers to as foreboding joy.

Interestingly, I know this concept  all too well. She explains it like this:

That moment when you enter your child’s room, while their sleeping, and you look over their precious little body and think how much you love them.  Then in that moment of joy you shudder–what if they were taken from me by death?

It’s that moment when you realize I have a great job, a wonderful family–I have joy.  Then always comes the shudder as you realize that joy could be marred by tragedy.  Those who experience true wholeheartedness in this life take that moment and transform it.  Instead of allowing the joy to be stifled by fear they allow it instead to be a moment wherein they mindfully practice gratitude.  They embrace the reality of something possibly going wrong through quite simply, thankfulness.  In this, their joy can always live.

What’s worth doing even if you fail?

I thought about this.

…and I realized for me it’s all the scariest things.

going to school.

being a single mom.

loving someone.

because those are the things that are worth every risk.  they are not worth looking at from the out skirt of my life.

Today, I realized for the first time ever that it’s OK to be scared and if I fail at something then that’s OK too.  What matters is that I was brave.

The Unseen {Featuring The Advice of Others}: Day 67

In Children, Faith, Family, Happiness, Humanity, Kids, life, Love, Mother, Teaching on August 19, 2012 at 1:07 am

{photo compliments of poshbabystore.com}

This beautiful post by Ashley Sullenger at Time Out For Women really struck a chord with me today.

Her post focuses on her recognized purpose in this life, a purpose designed specifically for her alone.  Of course, her journey isn’t one of isolation though, no, she talks about her daughter, Preslee, and the role little Preslee plays in helping her to see that purpose more clearly.

It’s hard, when you’ve experienced a loss, to see other people living on, doing the things you had planned but that your loss interjected, it’s hard to take 50 steps backward, only to know that you’ll have to make your way forward again.

She entitles her post, “The Princess Dress I Never Saw.”  I’m learning, as I grow and develop in my life and my own journey, that there are so many things we imagine happening or plan for–and they just don’t.  It’s like Ashley says,

Not long after my daughter died, I remember expressing to my mom how painful it was to watch everyone else reach different milestones with their children….It felt like salt being rubbed into a big open wound, being forced to watch other people’s children accomplish what I longed to do with my own daughter.

I felt this exact same way in my lifetime.  It’s been really hard to watch my friends move on with their spouses and build and grow their families.  It is like salt to a wound, and it does ache sometimes.

However, someone put it nicely to me the other day,

It is about sowing the seeds of the future and looking forward to the harvest you have planned for.

Sometimes in the midst of everything, it’s hard to remember to rejoice in the reached milestones and the joy of meeting them.

sometimes it’s easier to be mad.

though, it’s always better to be happy

there will always be princess dresses not seen.

Always.

But this doesn’t mean we won’t see other things.

a whit who is thankful for good advice.

I Do Free: DIY August

In Couponing, DIY, Family, Money, Money Management, Mother on August 6, 2012 at 7:02 am

DIY is well on it’s way. Pardon my cynicism.

Anyway, today’s cupcake is dedicated to DIY: HOW I DO FREE.

My friends all make fun of me, laugh really, when I tell them how much I love coupons and how devoted I am to cash register ring-ups totaling less than 50 cents. Some may call me cheap, I say what my Mom’s friend once told her, “why pay for things you don’t have to pay for? That’s just plain stupid.” She’s right.

Over my past year of couponing, I’ve realized a few things:

Krazy Coupon Lady really is the most organized and comprehensive couponing site on the web {and always my go-to}

Always wash your hands AFTER jumping through the dumpsters for coupons–I seem to contract colds when I forget this very important step. Puzzling.

Because I eat mostly organic, I tend to enjoy couponing household goods (versus food).  HOWEVER, you can coupon organic and definitely Whole Foods–I do it all the time.

People will not laugh at you when you coupon, they won’t, they’ll just stare on jealously.  Or give you a mental high five.

I started couponing to save money, in reality though, I coupon now for fun. It’s a game (between me and the retailers of America), and my goal is to always win.

Almost all retail chains (I use this term here to refer to clothing stores) have coupons and a quick google search will show you the money.

Most importantly,

Couponing the right way does not yield a bunch of useless shit you don’t need. The trick is, get what you need (and a few extras of what you need) while it’s on sale, with a coupon, and have enough product to sustain you until it goes on sale again (all items sale cycle by a few months).  No, you don’t have to have thousands of bottles of Pert Plus under your bed, just 3-4 bottles will do because that’s how long it will take to go to rock bottom price again.

So, my DIY Couponing for the week:

I spent  52 cents at Victoria Secret

total: 30$

{tip for this retailer: sign up for their mailers and also make sure to print their online coupons}

Ace Hardware (I like to paint furniture, remember?):

I spent 0.00$

total: 25$

{tip for this retailer: Ace does free paint weeks every couple months–watch their mailer}

Target (school supplies trip):

I spent 32 cents on my first trip and 3$ on my second, for all my son’s school supplies (markers, paints, crayons, glue sticks, Purell-2, erasers, pencils, pens). Oddly, we ran into another mom from our class and she rang up in front of me–I felt bad for her lack of knowledge–everything that she bought could have been free w/ almost no effort.

total: ~25$

{tip: Target is my go-to couponing store because it’s super easy to ‘stack’ coupons here. Just use a target coupon with a manufacturer coupon w/ an item that is on sale or clearance…voila free}

Shutterfly: free address labels till Sunday. {thinking ahead for xmas cards}

Cardstore.com: free greeting cards till tonight. {customize w/ photos too}

Last trick.

get your coupons from old people. honestly, they don’t use them, and old ladies love to help out younger ones. if you’re truly desperate (and unwilling to dumpster dive like me) buy your Sunday paper at dollar store.

There you have it. Couponing DIY whit-style.

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