In Others' WordsIn Others' Words

Friday, April 20, 2007

Things To Say

My son Josh is gettng married in 13 days--and I keep thinking of a few things I want to say to him.
It's not like our communication will end once he's married. I know that. But, I keep wondering if I've prepared him for this next big step in his life. Did I teach him everything he needs to know so that he can do this?

So what do I want to say to my son?

1. Carry Jenelle over the threshold.
It's ridiculous--obscene--what you're going to pay for rent in NYC. But, it's your first home together. Make it special. When you get back from your honeymoon, don't worry about unloading the U-Haul. Celebrate your life together--and take Jen in your arms and carry her into your apartment and savor the moment.

2. Be willing to say "I'm sorry" first.
You're an interesting blend of your Dad and me. You have your Dad's photographic memory and my quirky sense of humor. His math brains and my love of writing. I hope, like your Dad, you are willing to be the first one to say, "I'm sorry." Early on in our marriage I shut down and held on to my position like a bulldog with a bone. All I did was prolong the anger. I didn't necessarily win. Here's a little something I've learned: Thinking "I'm right" is wrong.

3. Pick your underwear up off the floor--and your toenail clippings out of the sink
You've been living on your own for a few years. And before that, you lived in an apartment with a bunch of guys who didn't care what was laying around. Well, now you're married. It's no longer all about you. And it never was--you just got away with things. Marriage is about two becoming one, but there are still two people living in that NYC apartment, so be considerate.

4. Tell Jen you love her.
Say "I love you" a lot. And then say it some more. Say it with flowers. Say it with notes and say it with hugs and kisses and walks through those city parks that you and Jen like.

You and Jen--this is your once in a lifetime. Make it the best you can. I know you're ready for this next big step in your life.

Making Time

I kept thinking I don't have time today to do my "grateful" blog.
What a lousy attitude.

Yes, life's busy.
My son's wedding is 16 days away. Even though I minimized the To Do list, there is still lots to do.

I received the back cover copy for BABY CHANGES EVERYTHING yesterday--one more step towards the August 1st publication date. And, I also got a request to put together a workshop to be considered for a women's conference.

And, healthwise, I am still running about 50 percent. I'm functioning, but I'm not multitasking. My energy runs out about midday and I find myself looking for the nearest horizontal surface so I can lay down and take nap.

But, busy or not, I am going to anchor today in gratefulness.

I am grateful for:

the unbridled enthusiasm of dozens of kindergarteners and first-graders performing a spring musical. I smiled nonstop for 40 minutes.

the splash of yellow daffodils and red tulips in my front yard, which were planted two years ago by Christa and her Dad

the relief of finding my dress for the wedding--and that all my daughters and my mother-in-law have their dresses too!

the reality that each day I am privileged to love my family and my friends--and that I should never, never take them for granted. Today is the 8th anniversary of the Columbine tragedy and we are only a few days past the Virginia Tech massacre. May we hold those families close in our prayers.

And may your day be anchored in gratefulness.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Late-in-Life Motherhood In the News

On April 13, 2007, a 36 year old woman gave birth to the first baby conceived in the United States from a frozen sperm and a frozen egg.

Other news of note:
Moms-to-be, make sure you eat apples!
A recent study reports that women who eat apples during their pregnancy may protect their babies from developing asthma.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Filling the Tank

I know my recent illness took a major toll on me.
And I am realizing more and more that it took a major toll on my six-year-old too.

A mere two days into my illness--when I swore my body was imploding--Christa colored a card for me. She drew a beautiful multicolored heart on the front--all purples and pinks and reds, with a smiley face in the center. Inside, she wrote: I miss our time together.

At that point, I'd only been missing in action for 36 hours. We had no idea that it would be weeks and weeks before I'd be a functioning mommy again.

About three weeks later, I was able to stagger downstairs and lay on the couch during the day. At least then I could be near Christa in the afternoon and evening when she was home from school. Every night, Christa and I would go to bed at the same time--8:00 PM. Rob would tuck us in bed together. It was another way that she could feel close to me. Usually I fell asleep before she did.

Now it's all about hugs. Christa will come up to me many, many, many times a day and say, "I need a hug."
My reply? "Anytime."

Christa wants a hug? That's what I'm here for--to hug her. To reassure her. To let her know I missed all our times together too.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Growing Up

There's been a long-standing Daddy-Christa tradition in our house. It started when Christa was a newborn and Rob was a commuter-Daddy, working in Wyoming and traveling back and forth between there and our home in Colorado. Every night he was home--which was about three nights a week--he put Christa to bed. And each of those nights, he held her and rocked her until she was sound, sound asleep.
"She's going to get used to this, you know," I warned.
"I know," he said, looking down at her snuggled in his arms. "But this is our special time."
As Christa grew, she outgrew his arms and her crib. So, Rob adapted the tradition. At bedtime, he'd read to her and sing to her--and then he'd snuggle beside her in bed until she fell asleep. Usually he fell asleep too. With his busy schedule he needed those extra minutes of sleep.
Two nights ago, Rob settled in beside Christa. She tossed and turned. Tossed and turned some more.
"You know, Daddy, I can't go to sleep until you leave," she said.
So Rob gave her a hug and a kiss and came on downstairs.
And when he told me about it--he looked a little bit sad.

Too often I wonder what's taking my child so long to grow up.
And then when she does, I wonder how it happened so fast.

Monday, April 09, 2007

What's the Latest with the Book?

Last week I finished reading/correcting the final proof--a.k.a. the "design proof" of BABY CHANGES EVERYTHING. The pages were laid out just like they will look when the book is published--with sidebars and a bit of artwork too.

Two members of my writing group, Inkspired, also proofed it and the publisher had two more proofreaders go through it. The editor at MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers International) also read through the book one more time. I also double-checked the medical information with my medical consultant for the book.

My hope and prayer is for the book to be clean, clean, clean. No typos. The book now goes to print, with an August 1st release date. This has been a long, long process--almost two years.

Another fun note: Linda, one of my writing comrades, googled the title of my book and found it is available for pre-order on and

Just another step in the publishing process!

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

What's A Mom Worth?

Every mom is a working mom.

So, what's the monetary value of being a mom?

About $135,000, according to that's $5,000 more than last year!

Similac, makers of baby formula, is holding a Mom's $135K PAYDAY Contest.
All you need to do is upload a photo of your favorite "mom job." Then write a photo caption in 50 words or fewer. You also have the chance to win a week's salary of $3,000. All moms who enter the contest can download free "Chief Mom Officer" business cards--why not?--and coupons for Similac.

While you're at the site, check out
That's where you can figure out your own mom salary--and even print yourself off a paycheck.

Gotta' love it.

Monday, April 02, 2007

Getting Back to Normal

It's long past time I dusted off this blog.
My life took an unexpected turn about six weeks ago--and I'm just now feeling halfway back to normal.
Suffice to say, I got wretchedly sick. Life as I knew it stopped. No writing. No blogging. No mothering. Nothing--except being sick.
But I am getting better slowly.
I'd like to get right back up to my regular multitasking speed, but it ain't gonna happen. I call myself a "One A Day Woman" right now. My body thinks sitting and walking are extreme sports.
So be it.
Today Christa and I ran errands together. Believe it or not, a trip to Wal-Mart was a real treat. We held hands and walked the aisles together and had fun picking out her favorite yogurts and a new coloring book. Then we made a quick stop at the bookstore and bought a book about Easter, which I am thankful I won't miss.
As we walked through the parking lot, I asked Christa if she was thankful for anything.
"I am glad we are spending the day together."
Me too.

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