Friday, March 30, 2012

Three surprising things I miss about LA

When we moved up north I knew without a doubt there were many things I was going to miss, including Jinky’s whole wheat blueberry pancakes, but I never realized that I might miss something as simple as my laundry room (I think this might now be the most suburban thing I’ve ever said).

1. My Pediatrician

I’ll be honest; I didn’t realize how awesome Dr. Santana was until I started seeing our new pediatrician in Walnut Creek. At every visit Dr. Santana was encouraging, sensitive, and provided me with her opinion, plus followed up with written research to any questions I had – vaccines, bilingual education, solid foods, and this disgusting eye goop, eh problem, Daisy had when she was a few weeks old (well, she didn’t provide me with any recent studies on that, but she reassured me when I was in hysterics because I was CERTAIN she was going blind.) She never made me feel rushed or stupid, and always made me feel comfortable. She, as well as all of Kaiser Sunset and its affiliated medical offices are extremely baby friendly, which basically meant that they went above and beyond to ensure that I succeeded in nursing Daisy for as long as we both wished. This is not to say that I do not like the girls’ new pediatrician, I’m, let’s just say, not over the moon about her. But, I’m hoping she grows on me.

2. My Laundry Room

I always hated our laundry room. It was tiny, awkwardly positioned and dimly lit. However, what I didn’t realize was how extremely loud and inconvenient it would be to NOT have a laundry room. Currently, our laundry facilities are in our main hallway, i.e. right in the middle of the house. Gone are the days of starting a load of laundry at night or hiding the dirty linens behind the pocket door. And now, let’s just say I lust after luxurious laundry rooms – a sink, shelves, a door oh my!!

3. My Farmer’s Market

I know, I know; I now live in the land of u-pick orchards and farmer’s market galore. However, I loved, loved everything about our little market. The time, Tuesdays from 3 – 7pm perfectly coincided with Daisy’s afternoon nap and my work schedule. It was small enough that I could let Daisy run loose, but big enough that I would be able to get my eggs, chicken, and beef not to mention any fruits and vegetables we needed for the week. I knew the farmers and the vendors, and they were always happy to give samples to a little pint-sized eater. Plus, my friend Ari had the most amazing, melt-in-your mouth sundried tomatoes and sheep’s cheese that added the perfect zip to my morning scrambled eggs. And as a little bonus, my friends and our gaggle of kids would meet at the market together. We’d swap recipes while the toddlers would burn off excess energy sampling juicy, organic, local fruits and veggies. These days, I’m still learning to love our local market – it’s Saturday mornings, which has made it more of a family affair with a trip to a nearby park. It’s much bigger which means there is a healthy supply of delicious dried fruit, the best carrots I’ve ever tasted, and my new friend Denise who makes the softest cinnamon chip cookies ever.

Friday, March 23, 2012

A photo essay: This week

We’ve had a busy week – a week with plenty of sunshine, which means we spent a good portion of each day outdoors. And so, in lieu of a written post, I present to you an essay of our week with iPhone photos.







Unfortunately, I have very few pictures of Lily these days. It seems she’s either: a) sleeping b) eating (and I’m far too prudish to post (let alone take! eek!) pictures of me nursing) or c) being carried in the Moby so, unfortunately, this is the only photo I have of her. I believe this is what they call the “classic second kid syndrome.” I must remedy this somehow so that when she’s sixteen she can’t tell me I didn’t love her because I only have one picture of her, which unfortunately is the back of her head.


Wednesday, March 14, 2012

The best kind of job

These days my life is charmingly low-key. I know that I have a toddler and a newborn, so technically life shouldn’t be so low-key. My days revolve around nap schedules and scheduling park play dates, a far cry from my fall schedule with papers to grade and essays to edit and weekend marathon training. I know that I am insanely lucky to be blessed with not one, but two amazingly calm and peaceful baby girls. Perhaps this is my reward for making it through nine grueling months of all-day nausea and endless nights of insomnia or maybe my payback will come when the girls rebel at sixteen, dying their hair purple and slamming their bedroom doors. But, this new momma of two is somehow clocking in 6 hours of consistent nightly sleep before the first feeding (and then another three or four hours…please don’t hate me.)

On Saturday, the weather was cool and overcast and with the threat of rain for the upcoming week, we decided to make it an outdoor kind of day with a trip to the farmer’s market and to the park. (It pains me a bit to admit that I feel that I have arrived at middle-aged suburbia where we watched a mid-morning little league game of COMPLETE STRANGERS. Eh, it’s baseball; we had fun nonetheless.) Daisy circled the park on her new trike, Casey chased squirrels and Lily napped against my chest in a makeshift sling. It was then, watching my loves, that I realized with startling clarity just how much I love motherhood.


Later that afternoon Daisy and I went outside to plant a few herbs in the garden. After losing interest in planting the mint, she begged me to blow bubbles. At first, I feigned interest wanting to finish before it got too late, but after watching her face light up with each bubble she “caught” my heart skipped a beat. I sat down, and for thirty minutes I blew bubble after bubble watching her squeal with delight, running to catch the bubbles and watching them with the upmost fascination. A few minutes later, she reached over for an unprompted hug, kiss and a “thank-you momma” making my heart melt before shouting “more bubbles momma, MORE BUBBLES!”

And I thought back to all that time I’d spent as a teenager, wondering what career I wanted to have come sharply into focus: the kind of job where I spent my afternoons naming zoo animals in French, nursing babies, and blowing bubbles. You don’t know it then, of course, or at least you aren’t really able to explain it. But, it’s the perfect job for me, I’m telling you.