Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Pear Pickin'

I grew up on a small 3 1/2 acre farm smacked right in the middle of the city. I helped my dad mow the lawn (reluctantly) fed the horse, cows, chickens, and whatever other farm-like animal my mother acquired. But it was only just recently that I truly appreciated the lifestyle in which I was raised. 

Four years ago my parents decided to expand their farmin' lifestyle and moved deep into the east texas piney woods which left their tiny in comparison farm abandoned and without a family to host in its historic property lines. The property went up for sale and 4 years later that is how it remains. Perhaps it is the lack of appreciation that our generation has for "roughing it" or the poor economy thats keeping the gates chained. Either way... it sits. Lonely and visited only by a group of landscapers once a month to prevent everything from looking too "Forbidden Forest-like". Until today.

My mom gave me a call yesterday informing me that the giant pear tree on the farm was heavy in beautiful yellow pears just waiting to be picked. I love pears, and since becoming a stay-at-home mom I have taken to a few domestic hobbies including baking. A pear pie just sounds nice. I called up another mommy friend of mine we tossed our little ones in the car bright and early this morning and headed to my old stomping grounds. Amazing how something so familiar and so well known can almost appear to be a stranger after being apart for so long. Yet everything was the same. The beat up concrete driveway. The twists and turns of ivy covering the side of the large white house. Everything was... perfect.

We loaded up our reusable Whole Foods bags with pounds and pounds of delicious pears. One juicier than the next. Our babies sat and gabbed to each other in their strollers, no doubt talking about how crazy we were to attempt any sort of manual labor, especially in the dead of one of the hottest Texas summers in history. But as we drove down the oh so familiar road I couldn't help but smile. I had shared part of a memory with my little one that I experienced every summer on that family farm. Picking pears till our skin turned red and enjoying fresh pear lemonade on the back porch as we watched the blazing sun set behind the giant pecan trees. It was a comforting nostalgia and a beautiful morning.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

pearly whites.

After gallons of drool, constant thumb chewing and plenty of teething tablets Emma has her first tooth!

Now, I know I have 19 more baby teeth left to grow in but the excitement of the first tooth was not something that I anticipated. She's all grown up, going to college and is getting married in my eyes. Teeth are big kid things.... babies don't have teeth... Its a little bittersweet. Like a sign that time cant stop and stand still while I enjoy her first smile, laugh, first time she crawls, pulls up, waves, gives kisses. These things are learned and moved on from in a flash! Babies don't stay babies, and gummy grins don't last long.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

moments of silence.

The house it still. Completely. The soft "tap tap" of my keyboard and the quiet buzzing of the ceiling fan are the only sounds heard in my otherwise silent apartment. Its nice. Before I had Emma I never appreciated silence. I hated it in fact. I always listened to music and had the TV on a random station that I wasn't even interested in just for the noise. It's funny how things change. As I sit here cozied up on my soft couch, a cup of my grandmother's famous orange spiced tea in my hands and my skin still warm from a long hot shower I realize that appreciating the little things is so important. The fresh smell of just washed laundry, the sound of Emma's slight snoring on the baby monitor, the faint smell of salmon and tuna on my adoring husband after coming home from work... these things are what make life move, dance, feel. These are the things one should cherish... this is the life.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

In the "fluff" of it all.

Some poeple's fix is drugs, shoes, hair products, alcohol mine is "fluff".

Hello, my name is Mandi and I am a cloth diapering addict.

Hi Mandi....

Recently I made the very dangerous choice of getting an ebay account. Reason being is that I saw the most amazing deal of cloth diapers 13 in all at a starting bid of $33. Worst case scenario is that I wouldn't win and the last minute ebay "snatchers" would grab them with only 2 seconds to spare.
4 hours and 36 minutes later I claimed my prize! $66 for what should be over $175 worth of amazing diapers. It was at that moment that I became a new woman. A predator, stalking the ebay network for the best deal possible. Popping my knuckles repeatedly as the refresh button became exhausted as I updated my browser watching those last seconds slip by. Since my initial account confirmation I have claimed over 25 diapers, 12 prefolds, 6 inserts and 2 diaper covers. But today I am putting down the hypothetical sword and giving my predator instincts a little rest. I guess this is an attempt of nesting already? A little early I agree... or it could just be an addiction, the little monster in my closet. Waiting, watching, for another awesome deal to slip out of the cracks...

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Avoiding the big "C"

When I found out I was pregnant with my first child I was beyond thrilled. The idea of growing the most amazing little human being inside of me was not only surreal but a journey I could not help but want to fully embrace. I took my prenatal vitamins like any good preggo should, tried to exercise through the exhaustion of it all, ate well (unless you count the many pints of Green Tea RiceDream) and got plenty of rest per my OB's request. However after baking my little lady for 40 weeks and 3 days my amazing natural pregnancy was thrown for a loop so large that even magnets couldn't keep me grounded.

On November 23rd, 2010 at 7:30 am I drowsily walked into the hospital for a deemed necessary induction. I remember waddling to the elevator my heart pounding, my husbands sweet reassuring hand slightly squeezing my shoulder. They hooked me up to various "machines that go ping" pumped me with unknown liquids and within an hour my trusty OB walked into the room and delivered terrifying news. "I afraid we cant stabilize the baby and I think it is in the best interest of you and the baby to perform a cesarean..." the words tumbled around in my head like dryer balls "best interest... best interest?" Who can argue? What woman is gutsy enough to say "well sorry that's not my plan I'll just wait it out..." I started to cry. My plans of having a natural, beautiful, unmedicated birth had completely slipped from my fingers. It was over.

I was wheeled out of the sterile room down the hall and into the room where birth plans die.
It was not the story for the masses. Yes, moments later my blushy pink little Emma was born. But I cant help but think back on the day and sigh. It wasn't what I dreamed of. It wasn't the experience I wanted to tell my sweet little girl one day. Unless of course I wanted to induce nightmares...

So when I found out that I was pregnant again I swore things would be different. I researched and made phone calls, typed and typed until my poor Mac book looked exhausted, and read every book and online blog about it. This time I was going to go all natural. No waiting rooms with old Parenting magazines.. no more scrubs and unhappy looking receptionists. No more waiting over an hour to see the doctor for a mere 10 minutes. I was going to deliver at a pretty birth center. With cozy bedrooms, warm birthing pools, beautiful pictures of amazing women giving birth and enjoying those first moments with their little ones. That was the place for me.

Sure, it isn't "normal" it isn't "medical" but its natural... and isn't that truly how birth is supposed to be. A bonding between the woman and her child. The chance to truly experience what millions of women before us experienced. The miracle of birth.