Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Nora, on earworms

"Sometimes something gets stuck in my head. It's something I don't want in my head, and it's there with something I do want, but I can't remember what I want to remember. And it makes me mad."

Monday, April 25, 2011


My grandmother, my one living grandparent, moved to an assisted living facility about a week ago. She left her house of the last 25 years, her city of the last 57(?) years, and moved to Pensacola to be closer to my dad. I haven't seen her new place yet, but she was able to bring a few things from home. She's not very mobile and hasn't been for a long time now, which is one reason that it finally came time for her to move. However, she is very sharp mentally. She told me that a very nice nurse at the facility was bringing her the crossword from the newspaper, but they were bringing her the "easy" one and she had to ask if they could bring her the New York Times.

She's also very much a people person. Family members have suggested that maybe that's where Nora gets it, and they may be right! It must have skipped a couple of generations, though, because most of the rest of us range from "more reserved" to "sort of antisocial."

One thing I've observed about all of my grandparents is that they know themselves so well. They know how they like their toast, what time they like to get up in the morning, which cabinet they keep their trashbags in. All minor things, but things that they settled on long before I was born. I have always found their routines comforting. I do well with routines myself, but they don't come very naturally to me. It has always seemed like it has taken me some effort to figure out what I want from life, even minor things. Anyway, it's hard to imagine Grandmother without her existing routines, having to come up with new routines for the first time in so many years. This will be the first place she'll have moved to without my grandfather, or any family member for that matter since I'm pretty sure she always lived with family before she got married. She has always taken comfort in her home, in family heirlooms she's collected and things that she has purchased or been given over the years. Her house had a lot of clocks, so I associate clocks chiming with her and my grandfather. She's told me and my sister that we can take pretty much anything we want from her house, and there are certain things she wants each of us to have. My dad is an only child and so we're the only two grandchildren. I'm incredibly flattered and I know I will value having some family heirloom, but it seems sort of wrong to be taking them now. Then again, she doesn't have a place for them in her new home, and the reality of the situation is that she won't be returning to her house in Mobile. That's pretty hard to wrap my mind around...

Sunday, April 24, 2011

I visited the Gateway Arch.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Easter Weekend

Jason doesn't have to work today. Nora and I started the "weekend" off Thursday night at Farm Burger. We attended their 1st anniversary celebration with a few dear friends.

 My friend Jessie asked us what we usually do for Easter. We try to attend some kind of community egg hunt on a Saturday--usually a Saturday earlier in the season, but we haven't yet this year so I guess we'll be finding something tomorrow. Easter morning, there are baskets from "the Easter Bunny"--pretty low-key 'round here. Then we attend church and afterward, a potluck luncheon at a church member's house in Druid Hills. The house is gorgeous, and looks aren't everything, but their property really is amazing. I always describe it as "like The Secret Garden." Really, really nice.

Here's a really old Easter picture!

Nora's first Easter...

Second Easter


And here's last year (with a mouthful of chocolate, of course).

I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

New phone

I finally joined the rest if the world and got an iPhone. My old phone had been limping along at death's door for a while. Finally, the day before I was to hop a flight to St Louis, the battery stopped working completely. There were no replacement batteries to be found because the phone was soooooo old (you know, two years old). Several hundred dollars later, I now have an iPhone, insurance for it, and supposedly the most bulky and kidproof case available. Woohoo! And now I get to update my blog from bed...

Except this program I downloaded to update the blog doesn't seem all that great. I can't add pics.

BRB. Depending on your definition of the word "right."

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Spring Breakin'

I'm telling you, I have the best kids.

Nora is on Spring Break this week. I'm excited about it because she's in school 5 days a week this year. We still have our afternoons during the school year (although we try to get naps in when we can), but I welcome having this extra time to hang out and do fun stuff.

I didn't have much planned, though, and we're on a relatively tight budget. So this morning we slept in and, after waking, had eggs for breakfast. We enjoyed the breeze coming in through our open windows. Anneliese was getting cranky and I didn't have many ideas, so we decided to go for a picnic in the park in our neighborhood. The park is 1.25 miles away, which is a big of a walk for Nora, but we made it. It was so fun, I want to do it again and again. (Except for the fact that it's about to get blazing hot, and then I probably won't want to do it so much).

One of the best things about our walk was that I got to really look at a lot of the houses in our neighborhood. You know what? I really, really love our new neighborhood. It is just where I want to be. It's filled with adorable little houses circa 1940-1960. I love how the lawns are so vibrant and full of mature plants and trees, lovingly landscaped, and ranging in style from utterly expressive and funky to HGTV enviable. Curb appeal is one area our home is lacking, but we'll get there. I planted a few annual bulbs, and we really want to get a garden up and running again.

Thursday I'm going to St. Louis for the International Cesarean Awareness conference. I'm taking Anneliese and Nora is staying home with Jason. They're going to go to Fernbank and to a minor league baseball game while I'm gone. I'm a little nervous about flying with a one year old, but I've done it before and I'll have a bunch of friends there to help. There are 9 of us going from Atlanta and many of us will be on the same flights. I am sharing a hotel suite with a friend.

I became involved with ICAN when I was processing my cesarean and looking ahead to have a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean). Having a VBAC was something of a journey which began when I learned that the old adage "once a cesarean, always a cesarean" is not always true. This has actually been an exciting couple of years for VBAC. There was a big conference at the National Institute of Health affirming the safety of VBAC, and the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology has recently revised their position on VBAC with the aim of making it available to more women and reducing our country's cesarean rate, which is 32.9% and over double the rate that the World Health Organization recommends.

ICAN is an organization that is near and dear to my heart. Many of my friends belong to it, and still others support it even if they have not had a cesarean myself. The thing about cesareans and birth in general is that it is a very broad topic and it is so much more than a medical decision. Every woman's situation is different and every birth is different. I do think that as a culture we have become somewhat detached from the birthing process, so I am a fan of doing things as naturally as possible. Still, I had a medicalized birth myself (in that it was in a hospital, I had a high risk pregnancy, etc) and so I understand the place for certain medical interventions.

Anyway, I'm happy to be attending this conference and spending time with my friends and learning more about birth and more about myself and other women (it's that kind of conference). I love a good conference. I truly do.