Wednesday, July 8

Fun in the Sun

Last night met up with new friend Sarah Kobunski who is an amazing photographer. (Check her out, She wanted to some practice shots of the girls in their tutus, in the sunset. Because I love practicing, and learning, and taking pictures, I jumped on the bandwagon and brought my camera along so I could practice as well. I haven't worked much with shooting in the sunsetting or directly into the sunlight so it was definitly a lesson learned. The girls had fun dancing in the sun, and Sarah and I had a good time trying to get a good shot. Here are a couple of my favorites.

Sunday, June 21


94 is a big number, especially when is the number of years you've been living. My grandma, my dad's mom, turned 94 this past year. She helped raised me when I was young and that makes me so proud. She is such an amazing woman who has led an amazing life. She has seen a lot in her life and her stories are so great to hear. I love looking through her old pictures and learning about life when she first got married. She and my grandpa went on their honeymoon to upstate NY and for the whole trip, there and back, they spent a total of $11 on gas. Can you imagine? She still has her first electric bill. She is just awesome, that's the bottom line.

Thursday, June 4

Bad habits continued...yes, I have more than five.

6. COLD EARS! Anyone who knows me knows that this has gone from bad habit to addiction and obsession. I don't know what it is about the feel of cold ears on my fingertips, but I absolutely love it. And it drives people nuts! Except for Justin, he really enjoys it. Oh, and the worst part is that Ava does it now too. She has been known to latch her itty bitty fingers around some cold ears. THAT'S MY GIRL!

7. Letting my gas tank go too far past the E before filling up. This is really irritating, I know. But sometimes I just forget. And my car doesn't hava dingy thing to remind me. It just expects me to remember to look at the dash and see how full it is, kind of like forgetting to check speed you're driving. IT'S TOO MUCH WORK, CAR! You'd think that with all these new technological cars they would have some that scream this shit out at you.

8. Thinking in blog mode or facebook status. I don't even update my facebook status for crying out loud! But, for some reason my head is always saying "Brittni is fidgeting, Brittni is brushing her teeth, Brittni is really annoyed at people who change their facebook status every 3 minutes!!" I seriosuly need to do something about this.

9. Making lists and then more lists and then before you know it I'm making lists to make lists. This might not actually be a bad habit if I followed the job list on said list. But I usually just write it down, on numerous different paper pads with numerous different pens, to etch it into my memory so that when I can get to the grocery store, I forget. I am SO productive! I spend half my day making lists, and the other half forgetting them. Strive to be like me people.

10. Cussing. You know this is bad when your two year old has already said "Uck." And that is not to be confused with the word trhat also means ew. But what am I supposed to say when I step in a puddle of my mud on my way to work in my dress shoes? Oh snapdragons? It just doesn't suit me. But I really should cut back, at least in front of lovemuffin.

Tuesday, June 2

My little girl.

I adore the person that Ava has grown to be and see the changes in her daily. She is so vibrant, fiesty, and full of personality and energy. But i gotta say, I really miss this, too

Monday, June 1

When life flashes before your eyes.

The events of this weekend are still etched in my mind. I keep questioning myself...What could I or should I have done differently? Why didn't I do something sooner? Could I have prevented this? Everytime Ava does something that is in disobedience of me or just really bratty, I go back to the moment I thought I lost her and the moment that is still giving me nightmares.

We were at the Columbus Zoo when it happened, when Ava had a seizure. Those words still make me shake and my eyes water.

She had been fine all week, no signs of sickness anywhere. And she had been on amoxicillan for a week for bronchitis. So when Saturday morning came we decided we would go to the zoo since our plans had changed the week before. I should have known when Ava showed no excitement over the rhinos or the baby elephant, Beco, that she was sick. She started to feel a little warm but nothing out of the ordinary. When we go to the manatees she felt much warmer and seemed so miserable. I am still kicking myself for not bringing Motrin with us. What an IDIOT!

I went into the gift shop at the manatee cove and asked for children's Tylenol. She called all of the gift shops at the zoo but nobody had any. We set out for the first aid tent, Justin carrying Ava and me pushing the stroller. We hadn't gotten far when Justin called out to me...Ava was shaking and her eyes were rolling back in her head. An image I can't get out of my head.

I grabbed her convulsing body from him and shouted her name hoping that I could get her to come back to me. Since that wasn't working I started calling out to people around me begging, pleading for help. I was hysterical. It felt like I stood there for five minutes before anyone would help me. Most of the next few moments are a blur to me because I thought I was losing her. I read horror stories all the time and that's all I could think of. I remember a couple people thinking she was choking but I knew she wasn't, she hadn't eaten anything. A lady came over to help and said that Ava was having a seizure and needed to be on side. I sat there on my knees in that tunnel at the zoo begging her to stay with me, begging God not to take her, to keep her safe, and bring her back to me. I am so grateful for that woman that sat there rubbing Ava's head talking to me, telling me to talk to Ava and that she was going to be okay.

The medics arrived, and even though it feels like I sat there for a decade, they responded very quickly. The man held her tightly and jumped on the back of that golf cart and gave her oxygen. Justin and I followed the golf cart to a building hidden away and by the time we got there we could already hear the sirens. Apparently one of the bystanders had called 9-1-1. Ava and I got in the ambulance and a man gave Justin directions to Nationwide Children's Hospital. I was worried about Justin driving there because I knew he was worried about Ava and he doesn't know his way around Columbus very well. I was worried about Ava lying there unconscious with monitors hooked up to her.

The medics in the ambulance were so nice and made me feel a lot better about the situation. They assured me that Ava was okay and all of her vitals were good, other than the obvious fever. Everyone responded so quickly and I am very thankful for the kind people that helped us that scary day.

Ava suffered from a febrile seizure which is very common in children between the ages of 6 months and 5 years. Unfortunately she is at a higher risk of having another one because of having one already. The seizure lasted about a minute and was caused by the quick rise in her temperature. Often these type of seizures can be caused by a high fever but for Ava, going from normal to 101.7 in a short amount of time is what did it for her. All of the doctors tell me that even though this is very scary for the parents to witness, it is not harmful to the child.

At the hospital Ava was checked for strep which was negative and also given a catheter to check for a uti, which was also negative. They gave her Motrin and chalked it up to just being a virus and sent us on our way. She slept the who way home and once at home was acting like herself again. She was funny and playful and seemed back to normal. Her fever started spiking again and went up to 104. I was losing my mind with fear that she was going to have another seizure. I was doing everything I knew to get her fever to come down. I alternated between giving her Tylenol and Motrin for a day and a half. I sat in the cold watered bath tub sponging her overheated body. It seemed like a never-ending fight.

I was able to get Ava into her pediatrician today to find out what the cause of her temperature is. It turns out that she has herpangina. It sounds a lot more disgusting than it actually is. It is mouth blisters. They looked in her throat Saturday at the hospital but she must not have had any blisters yet. Her mouth was pretty full of them today and it is obvious. She lets out a wail anytime she tries to eat or drink. Unfortunately it is a virus that has to run it's course which means that Ava will have to suffer until the blisters go away. My poor girl is miserable and I feel awful for her. But I am so so so very thankful that it is just a virus and nothing serious. She will get better, and God willing she won't have any more seizures. I will be tracking her temperatures like a hawk until we are out of the woods..which isn't until she is 5.

Hug your little ones a bit tighter from now on, because you just never know.

Friday, May 29

Bad Habits

We all have bad habits and we usually don't break them because they become a part of who we are. Here are some of mine.

1. Chewing on the plastic things that attach tags to your clothes. I love them for some reason. Justin does too. We always make sure to share and if not, then we have been known to fight like 3 year olds. Yes, we are mature adults.

2. Shaking. I am always moving. People think I am very impatient or anxious but my legs or arms are usually moving in some form. I just cannot help it.

3. Cracking my knuckles. It feels so goood.

4. Leaving doors open. Justin thinks I grew up in a barn because I am fine with leaving the front door/back door open. I don't consider all the bugs flying in. I also leave the refridgerator door open while I poor my glass of tea. Drives him NUTSO!

5. Indecision. This is a major problem. It is more like a disease rather than a bad habit. For the life of me I cannot make a decision easily. I usually know what I don't want but I rarely know what I do want. I like when people make descisions for me. But don't you dare make the wrong run because I will tell you straight up.

I've decided to do this five at a time. So these are the first five. When I feel like running on myself some more I'll shoot for five more. Until then...what are some of your bad habits?

Thursday, May 28

Memorial Day Weekend

Here in Ohio, Memorial Day weekend means that pools are open! I haven't been to the pool in years because I don't want anyone to see me in a suit. Yes, I am that pathetic. So every year I pray and hope that I will know someone with a pool. My parents have talked about getting one for years but have never committed.

Well this year all my dreams come true...not really but it sure is nice. Justin's dad built a new house and with it they built a pool. It is beautiful and relaxing and I looooove it. I don't feel any more comfortable in my swim suit, but at least I don't have to worry about a ton of people seeing me, and that is, afterall, all that matters.

Oh, and Ava loves the pool too. We
are looking into private swim lessons. She is a fish...sort of.

Sunday, May 17

A blooming weekend

This weekend was wonderfully spent with my family. It was so great to get outside and feel the sun on our faces. Ava had the greatest time playing outside in the dirt and water. I know that I will have my hands full all summer long because getting her indoors is a job that requires a cocktail at the end of it. It is painful and tiring and usually makes me want to scream but I don't because to add to her screaming would make everything worse. But I still look forward to every hot summer day that we will spend outdoors playing and seeking adventure.
The weekend started out with a graduation ceremony. Graduation season brings up many emotions for me. I'll be honest, I get a little angry because it seems that there are always so many places to go and it is difficult to find the time to get everywhere. We are always rushing. But I love the way graduation season reminds me of my own, and more importantly, where I was and who I was when I was graduating. It was five years ago and the journey that I've had since then is crazy, ridiculous, and very special. This years grad season got started in the right direction however. Nicolas, my five year old nephew, graduated from preschool. Little kids graduating is one of the cutest things ever. See for yourself....

Pretty stinkin cute right? He is really one of the most photogenic kids I've ever known. He loves to have his picture taken, and he is always smiling just as pretty as he is here in this picture. His two brothers are the same way. They are all adorable and the camera knows it. I'll share more of them later because they are too cute not to show you.

So Nicolas blooming from a preschool little kid to a kindergarten big kid was the first blooming action of the weekend. Saturday Justin and I started gardening. We are doing a regular flower garden around the house and hopefully in the next couple of weekends we will get our vegeatble garden started. Neither of us have ever gardening. I love flowers and all, but as for getting out there and building and planted a garden...I was a virgin. But not anymore. A garden virgin I am not. In fact, I might go as far and say I am a garden whore considering thats all I did ALL weekend. I am very impressed and proud with what we got accomplished. I've never considered myself good with a shovel but that picture to the right shows along the side of the house where I tilled up the yard with just a shovel, my foot, and these hands. Impressive right? I know Juston was impressed because he told me that he didn't know I could work like that. Well I showed him! But I started thinking that maybe I shouldn't have because npw he is going to try to put me to work more often. Shit. I should have thought about that sooner. After tilling, it started to rain so we went to Lowe's to pick out some flowers. I can pick out flowers that I like and want easily, but I don't know much about what to put where or what kind of sunlight each flower needs. So I just got what I liked, planted them where I thought they looked good, and filled in with mulch. I may not be Martha Stewart but I'd say we did pretty good for being virgins going into this. I am happy with what we got done in a mere two days. We make a pretty good team...most of the time. And my favorite part of the garden is my calla lily plant. Being my favorite flower it was a must for my garde. I got a yellow planted one a couple of weeks ago to keep planted in this awesome pot I found at TJ Maxx, but I wanted to have one in the ground too. It is beautiful and I could kiss it every day. And I might.

Thursday, May 7

I Dream of Etsy

My latest addiction and obsession is with etsy. I am head over heels in love, can't get enough of, and utterly infatuated with the endless possibilities that exist on etsy. I have always had a passion for things that are handmade. A lot of times I'll attempt it and if that doesn't work then buying it works too. In the fall I look forward to bazaars so that I can buy handmade christmas decorations and knitted dish cloths. The beauty and work that goes into making all of these one of a kind pieces pulls at my heart a little bit. It makes me happy that there are so many people out there being creative and sharing that with others. I do consider myself a creative person, but etsy PUTS ME TO SHAME. Seriously.

At first I didn't realize all of the possibilities over at etsy, but once I opened pandora's box all the money fell out of my wallet. Jewelry, bags, clothing, templates for this and that, everything cute baby, and did I mention the jewelry? My shopping cart keeps growing and growing and I'm not real sure what to do about it. I could quit, but then I would be sad since all I dream about all day is shopping etsy. The better idea is to get my creative juices boiling and open my own etsy shop so that I can take that money and spend it on my favorite etsy items.

They go vintage too. Cait, I can totally see you there. I have already picked out a few pieces for you. See what etsy does to me? It just makes me all mushy and gushy and want to spend money on EVERYONE, not just me! It is a beautiful world, really.

Go check it out, you won't regret it.

Thursday, April 30

Sleep story

Over at one of my new favorite blogs, girlsgonechild dot net, Rebecca posted a sotry about co-sleeping with her adorable daughter. It brought back so many cherished memories of those kind of nights and mornings with Ava. She asked for the readers' sleep story to be entered into a giveaway. Not that I need the bouncer that she is giving away, but I love contests and I love my sleep story so I posted and I thought I would share with you what I wrote.

My sleep story is more of a no-sleep story.

Ava has been sleeping with me since the night she was born. She is now 2.

When her father left us in the hospital the day after she born the only thing that kept me going was Ava. I never wanted to let her go because she was literally my life. The nurses all yelled at me for letting her sleep in my arms. For some reason it was against hospital policy for babies and mothers to sleep together. WTF? I didn’t listen, she slept with me ever night for the week we were there.

Then when we got home I couldn’t even think of not being close to her. It made nursing much easier and we both slept better cuddled up with each other. Sleeping completely alone at that point would have broken me. Her room was so far away, and what if I didn’t hear her? That was not a chance I was going to take.

I started dating Justin when Ava was 3 months old. We didn’t start having over-nighters for the first couple of months but when we were ready for that I really wanted to have the privacy that we needed to take our relationship to the next level…plainly said we really wanted to jump in the sac. So I started training Ava…but somehow she always knows. The minute I walk past my bedroom door towards her she awakes. What? I thought you were sound asleep but you were secretly counting the number of steps I took so you would know which room we were entering? Kids are too damn smart for their parents’ own good, even at that age. But somehow I managed to get her into her own bed for a couple of hours each night, just long enough for me and Justin to spend some time together…alone. But Ava always wound up right smack dab in the middle of us. Neither of us seemed to care though. I loved sharing a bed with the two loves of my life, and Justin was totally embracing being a family.

Ava did sleep in her own bed for a little while after her 1st birthday. It took a lot of work but we got her there. Now she is back in bed with me and I am lacking in the sleep department more than ever. Cuddling doesn’t happen anymore. Ava loves to sleep with my pillow, loves to sleep on my side of the bed, doesn’t want to be touched or bothered, and rolls around like crazy. It isn’t anything for me to get kicked in the face (several times) in the night because she is tossing and turning, I still love feeling close to her but I’m not partial to black eyes. So we’re back at square one and trying to find a way to get her back into her own bed,…for good this time.

By the way…your post is beautiful and captures so well the exact way I felt when Ava was sleeping with me at that age. Waking up to that sweet smell and baby kisses is one of the best feelings ever. Thank you for taking me back to that place.

Anyone wanna share their story? In the mean time how about this adorable sleep picture?

Tuesday, April 28

It's true what they say

Practice really does make perfect.

Okay, well not really perfect. At least not for me. I've been working on a camera strap slipcover. The first one I mad was too small, the second too big, and the third too small. I put a new stitch in the one that's too big to make it fit but wanted to try again to satisfy myself. I don't like failing at crafty things.

So I made a fourth one tonight, and it only tookm about fifteen minutes so I guess I'm learning. And it turned out and I am so excited. I will be making lots more in all sorts of different patterns.
Next project....adding on a lens pocket and a memory card pocket.

The littlest mommy

When I was young I loved playing “house.” It’s so funny the way kids play things acting like they are adults. It happens so often and in so many different manners. I played with barbies, baby dolls, and little people. All of them had little families and every day lives that as a child I thought were typical of grown ups. While riding bicycles we would have different parts of town that we would drive to and from. McDonalds, the school, the pool…and every once in awhile we’d even get pulled over by the police. The more I think back on it, and they are actually very vivid memories, the more I realize that all of the things I played were based on an adult life that I was aware of. I don’t remember what age I started playing these games but my memories go as far back as I can remember.

Ava just turned two and is already playing these games. A few days ago the babysitter told me about the kids playing. Her 3 year old daughter and a little boy around the same age were pretending to be Ava’s mommy and daddy. They took her to McDonald’s and got her French fries and nuggets. Ava played right along. At home she plays with her baby dolls and stuffed animals. Yesterday she was rocking her stuffed Ming Ming patting her on the back and saying “shhh.” Then she laid one of her babies in the bed and got the bottle and said “here baby, gulky.” It is the sweetest and cutest thing ever.

She is only two, yet she understands some of the basic aspects of life. Babies have mommies and daddies, like to be rocked to sleep, and love their gulky. She pushes around her stroller with purse in hand, sunglasses covering her eyes, shouting “bye mommy” and it melts my heart. I wish I could hold onto these days forever.

Who else has little ones pretending to be grown ups?

Thursday, April 23

a trio

I have a ton of really great friends that I rely on for support, laughter, fun times, adventures, and great conversation. I really don’t know where I would be without my friends. I know a lot of people say that and that their friends are the best around, but I truly feel like that. They have picked me up when I’ve fallen, laughed at my bad jokes, fallen in love with my daughter, and been my family when I felt like I had no where else to turn. To say I love them is an understatement.

One of my nearest and dearest friends lives in California. She has been on and off living there for about 3 years and finally settled in permanently sometime last year. Before that she spent mostly summers there and there wasn’t any way I could visit. She comes home but it is becoming less and less often as the time passes. Life without her is very strange. I miss being able to pick her up and drive around til the wee hours of the morning. The 3some that she and I and another dear friend makeup are missing its artsy fartsy, weird food-eating hippie, and I say that in the greatest ways.

So what are we going to do about it?

FLY TO SAN FRANCISCO!!! That’s right! Me and my girl are going to fly cross county with my 2 year old to see our other girl. The excitement that I have is indescribable. All I can think about is our tearful reunion, because it always is, trolley cars, bays, sidewalks full of strangers that I want to know, Victorian houses, claw foot tubs, and gab sessions with my two besties. It’s going to be an amazing vacation and I am just counting down the days and trying to raise the numbers in my bank account.

When we finally get to San Fran and see the other third of our trio it will have been 8 months since I last saw her pretty face, in person. That is INSANE! Honestly, having to go that long without seeing one of your best friends is heartbreaking.

But I won’t dwell on that.

I need some help though. Ava has never flown. I am desperate for tips and advice for flying with a 2 year old. What are the essentials and the best recommended products to have on board with me?

Wednesday, April 22

My daughter's obsession

Ava is mildly obsessed with milk. Okay so that should really say, Ava is wildly obsessed with milk. Her entire life revolves around it. And you know how kids have their own way of saying things? Well Ava’s word for milk is “gulk.” I have no idea where she came up with this but every other word is gulk or gulky. I’ve tried teaching her to say it the correct way by putting emphasis on the m because she can say any other word that starts with m. It goes something like this,

Me: Ava say mmmmmmmmmiilk
Ava: gggguuuuuuuuuuuulk

It’s so adorable and I really love how she says it in her little two year old voice. But Justin is convinced that if we don’t start teaching her to say it the correct way then she’ll go to kindergarten asking for her gulky. I’m not convinced however.

Since she is obsessed though, gulky is always on her mind and she is always asking for it. Even if she doesn’t want it for drinking, she has a need for it to be in her hand. “Where my gulk?” she says…..ALL. THE. TIME.

I’d love to hear some stories of something your kiddo says wrong in such an endearing way that you don’t really mind. Come on, I need a good laugh today.

Sunday, April 19

A day at the park.

Yesterday I had the pleasure of taking pictures for a beautiful and inspiring little family. It was a great day for pictures, warm and sunny. I haven't had much practice working with families and kids outside of my own so I am so appreciate to have had the opportunity to work with this family. Aren't they so adorable?

Amanda and Denny are the wonderful parents to these two little cuties. Zach has a great imagination and tons of energy like the typical 2 1/2 year old. If he hadn't saved me from the dinosaurs I'm not sure where I'd be today ;) And Bri is such a little fighter and her story and achievements are very inspiring. A blessed family indeed.

Amanda recently started up a business making tutus for little girls...or big girls. They are so adorable and even better, they're affordable. Check out her site for more information on tutus and bows.

And check out this pic of their little angel, Bri. I just adore it.
Hope everyone's weekend was as enjoyable as mine. Back to the work week...and from the sounds of it, icky weather. Let's all hope that the warm sunny weather is back agin for the weekend.

Thursday, April 16

A whole new World...the next chapter

That song from Aladdin resonates through my mind when I think of a whole new world. But the new world I’m talking about was anything but a sappy love-song from a Disney movie.


Simply stated but a complete understatement.

Part Deux.
After finding out I was indeed pregnant I wanted to let sperm donor know. That wasn’t going to be so easy though considering he had my means of communication and transportation. For some reason I thought that if I told him immediately then he would leave the party and the life he was living and come straight to me ready to change his life for me and this little person growing inside of me. I can’t remember why now, but MJ and I went to wal-mart and I used a pay phone to call sperm donor. In true sperm donor fashion he was a complete ass and didn’t even believe me. I went back to MJ’s with her and slumbered into a deep hole on her couch until the wee hours of the night when sperm donor came rolling in drunk as a skunk.

I rarely regret anything in my life because I see all mistakes as an opportunity to learn and mature from. However, this is not the case in the decision I made to stay with sperm donor. I really thought that I could change him and that we could live a happy life. Who wouldn’t want to change their life around for their own child? There are so many pieces of me that wish I would have walked away right then and there. Before he had the opportunity to bring me down or walk away from us. I didn’t walk away though. Instead I tried to hide everything that he was and what he was doing from everyone who loved me and all those who had already done so much for me. And I have to live with that.

Bars and Hospitals.
Sperm donor showed no improvement in the early days of my pregnancy. I was searching for him in random bars across town and fearing for my life and the life that was growing inside of me while he was out spending money I had earned.

I was extremely sick for most of my pregnancy. Morning sickness turned into all-day and night sickness and lasted most of my pregnancy. I was hospitalized around my fourth month for a kidney infection and while I was lying in a hospital bed he was gambling and drinking. I had no idea how bad things were.

The Sober Month.
We moved into a bigger apartment in a better part of town and for awhile sperm donor was actually sober. At least I believed he was. It only lasted a few weeks though. And in those few weeks I really thought that something had changed in him. That maybe he realized how precious the life growing inside of me was and that he needed to change his life for her and really for himself. For three weeks he was the sober person that I had been looking for, for months. I was able to convince all of my friends that he was doing better, attending NA meetings, and was on the road to recovery. We had a nice Christmas and were able to afford getting gifts for each other and for our families.

It didn’t last at all.

We were scheduled to make a visit to his family over New Year’s. The night before we left he went out and didn’t come home. We still managed to make the trip to Philly but I was angry the entire time. I wanted to tell his family so badly but I didn’t want to ruin the trip.

When we came home he kept getting worse. I was hospitalized again and this time I needed surgery. After my surgery he was gone again. I can only imagine the things he was doing. My family was starting to notice that I was always depressed and that I was making excuses for his whereabouts or why we didn’t have any money. He had gotten laid off from work and our only income was unemployment and some money I was making from babysitting occasionally. His mom sent us money so that we could pay our rent and have a little bit to live off of until he found a job. He went to the post office to pick the certified check for $1000 that she had sent.

I didn’t see or hear from him for a week…

Wednesday, April 15

Flat on my face.

Sometimes things happen in life that make you fall flat on your face. That happened to me today. I felt like I was on top of the world because things have been so well lately. But I guess a good high can never last too long anyways and you just gotta find something to get you back on top again.

I interviewed for a full time position at work and found out today that they chose someone else. I feel like such a dumbass; embarressed and ashamed. After being with the agency for more than a year I'm not good enough yet to be hired as a full-time employee? What a kick in the ass. I'm sure that whoever they hired is a great candidate for the job but I love my job. I'm dedicated to the agency and have worked my ass off so hard for this past year just waiting for this opportunity and then it comes and goes just like that. I'm so sad and pissed off.

So now I'm stuck trying to find something else that is going to make me feel good again. I fell off the weight loss horse that I've been riding so I'm determined to get back on it and lose weight in time for my weigh in on Monday. I'm also starting school in two weeks which is exciting and scary as hell all at the same time. I'm ready though. This is the challege I need right now and I'm finally at a place in my life where I feel good about school.

Other things to keep me busy: I'm going to attempt to make a camera strap slipcover for myself. I haven't sewn in years but I am determined to do this and make a beautiful strap. I have the walk for MS on Saturday, and even though I'm like $100 away from my goal...yeah.

So I'm going to sulk the rest of the day and evening but tomorrow I'm going to wake up with a smile on my face and remind myself of all the wonderful things in my life that I have to be grateful for...but as for now, back to bitterness and maybe a margarita :)

Monday, April 13

Pink Eggs & Ham

Ava’s third Easter has come and gone faster than I ever could have imagined. I look back at her first Easter and see how far we’ve come and am amazed and feel so blessed. Her first Easter was spent in the hospital; she was healthy but mommy wasn’t. I tried so hard to be out of there so that we could be home for Easter but it just didn’t happen. Instead we enjoyed most of the day together cuddling and nursing building that special mother daughter relationship.

This year she probably could have cared less if I was there to witness her running around with all her cousins in search of eggs. She is so independent and lively. I sit and watch her and just try to absorb it all in. Those moments are so easily forgotten which is why I snapped a couple hundred pictures. Like this one. And then I see the special moments that she has with my man and my heart melts like a chocolate bunny in August. I am so grateful to have been able to spend the day with our families and my perfect little family. It makes all those days that seem so-so worth it. Like we are saving all those perfect moments for one special day in which they just start exploding. A domino effect of perfectness.

Hope you all had a wonderful Easter spent with family and embracing all of life’s greatest gifts.

Thursday, April 9

What brought me here.

Lately I’ve gotten into reading other people’s blogs, mostly single moms and even a single dad. I’ve found their stories relatable in some ways, inspiring in others, and feel some sort of connection to them being a single mother also – this is assuming that being a single mother means unwed because that is the only way in which I could possibly be considered single.

I am in a relationship with a man that I love incredibly. There are times when I don’t have all the burdens that 100% single moms have because I have my man, and he adores my baby girl. He is willing to watch her so I can go to aerobics or to dinner with my friends. He enjoys giving her baths, reading books, and tickling her until she goes into a completely infectious laughter. I am blessed to have found such a wonderful man to love me and my daughter. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t endure other aspects of being a single mom. Late nights with a fussy girl who can only be soothed by her mama, her blanket, and milk…in that order, embarrassing shopping trips with an out of control two year old, and drama from the sperm donor.

I’m more than happy now and although some don’t see our story as a fairytale I still do because in the end I found my prince – but before I found him, my life was anything but a fairytale. I was lost, lonely, insecure, and abandoned. Two years after my daughter’s birth and three since this whole charade started, I’m ready to tell my story. Some know it but others may be shocked, but what’s a good story without a little shock factor?

I was almost 20 when I met sperm donor, three months later I was pregnant. I had no idea what I was getting myself into with this guy. I am so ashamed to say that I bought into what he was selling me. We went out a couple of times to parties and I saw that he was into drugs. I never thought it was a problem. I needed all of my fingers and toes to count how many people I knew that had used or were using some form of recreational drugs. I really didn’t think it was as big of a deal as it was. Pretty soon he was stealing my car and money, disappearing and leaving me deserted, and accusing me of cheating and ruining his life. If the unexpected miracle of life hadn’t of happened that would have been the end of me and sperm donor. I would not have had a reason to stay, but it did, and I thank God every day for the miracle he blessed me with.

Achy boobs and beer.
The first week in August I went to Myrtle Beach with my friends. Little did I know it was sort of my last hooh-rah. Before the trip I had dreamed two separate times that I was pregnant but I really didn’t think too much more about it. I was so relieved to be on the trip, especially since sperm donor had taken all of the money I saved up, but I was worried the whole time about what he was doing back home with my car and phone. During my week at the beach I noticed some things were different about me. I lacked energy and took advantage of lying out in the pool or on the beach. I wasn’t hungry during the day, instead food made me feel nauseous, but by night time I was famished. A couple of times I tried to drink beer or mixed drinks but it also made me sick. Then I had yet another dream. I think I knew that I was preggo, but wasn’t ready to admit it.

The test.
The night I got home from the beach I was expecting sperm donor to be waiting for me at his apartment. Instead he was missing with my cell phone and my car. I was stranded because I’d sent my friends home in a desperate attempt to keep this all a secret from them. I was so embarrassed with what this had all come to. After walking to a nearby gas station, in a not so great part of town, I was able to reach another friend, MJ, to come and pick me up. She was 8 months preggo at the time and was a dear, dear friend of mine and I had relied on her so much already. In times like these you really find out who your friends are.

So anyways, I was really down due to the fact that my boyfriend was a drug addict and verbally abusive. I brought a bag of beer with me, yes a bag – I’m classy, to drown my sorrows into and share with her boyfriend since they were doing so much for me. I started drinking a beer, got about a ¼ of it down and then threw up. This was a sure sign that something was not right; I could always “handle” my beer, especially the first one. I looked up at MJ my arms still hanging over the toilet and said, “I think I’m pregnant.” Those words were so deafening and the last I thought to be coming out of my mouth. She scurried around the house looking for a pregnancy test she knew she had, and then I peed on it.