Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Taking One For The Team

I generally spend Tuesdays working on ReLive things a little bit, doing laundry and checking emails here and there for Mammoth work.  I like Tuesdays.  Today, however, I have spent the day nursing my bruised body.   Drifting in and out of sleep.  Achy and rough.   I had a bit of an accident yesterday on my way out of the office and I'll spend the next couple of days paying for it.  We work out of an old house that has a narrow, wooden staircase of about 20 stairs.  As I was headed towards them and out the door for the day, I took one step and somehow slipped and spun around face first heading down all 20 of those stairs.  Laptop too.  It was the loudest commotion.  It seemed like slow motion as I even had time to realize how many stairs there were and I still had not stopped and was still proceeding to the very bottom.  Everyone ran over to me, including my husband and I was a little dazed but laughing.  Instant pain and broken jewelry thrown about.  It was pretty epic.  In a skirt, none the less!  Somehow I was able to keep that down.  I try to be a proper lady as much as I can.  :)  I started swelling up instantly, but was rushed home to ice everything down.  My mama even came up to help (she's a nurse) so I had really good care.  Thankfully, no broken bones.  I don't know how that happened.  Just bruises and a lot of them...everywhere.
I kind of want to get some rock climbing cables and strap myself in next time I venture onto these Stairs of Death.  I'm not the only one that has tripped up or down them.  I'm just the only one that has been that creative in going down them.  It's amazing what the human body can go through and keep ticking.  I feel like I've been ran over by a truck!  At least, I have some tea, a quiet house and this beautiful view to soak in right now thru the pain. Every couple of hours, something new hurts.  It's kind of ironic though.  Our business has been pretty tough this year and we've been weathering the storm and taking the hits as they come.  Something that you do when you own a small business that ebbs and flows.  My adventure down the stairs felt like a physical journey of all of that.  Glad I could take one for the team!  :)

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Searching For Light

What would you do if you absolutely hated what you do for a living?  If you despised leaving your house in the morning because what you faced sucked all the life out of your soul day after day?  I recently had dinner with someone who told me that they hated their job.  We were initially discussing it calmly. Me... offering hope and a possibly a new perspective.  A fresh breath.   Them...stopping me in mid sentence.  No, I absolutely hate it.  Said with such passion.  Such desperation.  Loss of hope and overridden by responsibility beyond what I could ever hold.   I teared up.  Right there at the best table in the restaurant.  The one that overlooks the city that unfolds beneath me.  I couldn't swallow my wine.  My throat hurt.  My heart hurt for them.  To not see the light at the end of the tunnel.   To be so beaten down by their daily life for years on end.  So, quit one would typically say.  Look for something else.  Remember life is too short to waste it being unhappy.  They were beyond that.  Lost in the shuffle of not being able to see 2 feet in front of them.  It's not that easy.  Sometimes that is so true when you are the sun to so many moons.

I hope they can find their way to this...

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Art of Alone - A Meal Out

I decided to play around with a series in this space.  Every so often, I want to adventure out and do something alone.  No kiddo, no friend, no husband to keep me company.  I spend a lot of time alone during the day since I work from home a lot.  I'm not so good at going out and about and doing what would regularly be adventures with a partner, but doing them alone so I thought this would be a great way to force myself to step outside of my comfort zone.  Alas, The Art of Alone is born.
My first adventure was to enjoy a meal at a restaurant alone.  I picked the perfect place and the perfect day a few weeks ago.  A cute, boutique style restaurant called Esquina.  I asked to sit outside.  It was a cloudy day and as my meal progressed, a storm started to form overhead.  With a glass of wine in hand, a delicious, fresh salad and a good book to peak at from time to time I watched the storm clouds start shifting overhead.  The air changed.  The conversation around me focused on the storm and I just sat.  By myself, alone and enjoying the moment.  The tastes, the smells and my surroundings.  It was one of my favorite meals!  I definitely will be doing this a little more often.  I found it comforting yet at the same time just enough out of my comfort zone to notice the things you miss when you are dining with company.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Strange Days

Well, my mourning must come to an end at some point.  It is a new season, after all.  The summer came to a sad end without moving into our house as we had planned.  The deal fell through at the end and my dreams of living in a farm house are floating out there, not sure where and when they will come to life.  I was ready to be in the remodeling mode by now, but I'm trying to look at the bright side and think that something better will come along.  Sooner than later please, universe.
I've been busy making jewelry and putting inspiration back into my other project, ReLive Organics.  I have both my Morning Sparrow jewelry and ReLive products going into 2 new retail places in town.  There's some positivity!  The timing on those worked out just right as I was seeing a lot of free time needing to be filled now that I wasn't going to be working on an old house.  Interestingly enough, my marketing job is going seasonal and starting next Monday I am will be taking a break from that.  Our company is just kind of complicated right now.  I may be able to pick up a few side projects with it until Spring, but I honestly don't really know the direction everything is going and I'm a little exhausted over thinking it.  Strange days these are.  This year is just taking turns I didn't expect however, I will just take the curveballs as they come.  Not much else I can do.  In the meantime, I'm just looking for a place for my feet to land.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Bullying Starts Young

G is at the end of his 2nd week of preschool.  Drop off and pick ups have gone smoother and I think he is really liking it.  Well, maybe "was" really liking it is more like it.  This week, I saw my first introduction of preschool bullying.  The target:  my son.  One afternoon I was picking him up and he was wound up running around playing with a ball.  He was throwing this ball all over the little indoor area where they have the kids waiting when it's pick up time.  I kept telling him to throw it softer and to wait until people were ready to catch it before throwing it to them.  You know, the usual simple rules of playing with balls that you teach preschoolers.  Well, these 2 little kids wanted that ball and they ganged up on G, ignoring the fact I was right there.  One kid went right up to him and stood shoulder to shoulder facing him and shoved him with both hands.  G fell down.  G kind of laughed thinking maybe they were playing.  That kid turned and looked at me and glared.  What?!  Excuse me?! I gave him the stink eye (I give a really good stink eye, just ask my husband) and stared him down.  Immediately after this, kid #2 goes and starts kicking him!  In the legs. In the back.  Kicking at him after he falls down.  G quickly gets up and runs after the ball.  The teacher comes over and tells this kid not to kick.   However, it was kind of passive so it didn't get the kid's attention at all.   I left that day feeling really bad for G.  Is he the "new" kid that is picked on?  Do they hate him?  Is there anything more being done to show these kids how to treat each other?
The next day, I had a talk with the teacher mentioning I saw all of this and wanted to make sure he was playing well with others.  After our conversation I felt better.  She knew it was a concern of mine and that was my point.
Well, this morning we go to walk into his class and he stops cold at the door.  Doesn't take a step in.  Instead, starts stepping backwards.  I have to coerce him inside.  I stay for a little bit so he can warm up.  We walk over to a table to sit and talk.  He's very clammed up and stressed.  That is kind of normal for drop off times so I just give him time to adjust.  A few minutes later, he goes over to where a kid (kid #3) is playing with Mr. Potato Head and tries to join in playing with that and picks up some pieces of this nearby.   Kid #3 freaks out and instantly pushes him so hard that G falls to the ground.  I say "Whoa" really loudly so the kid knows his reaction caught my attention.  I look down at G and he's sitting there on the ground wide-eyed staring up at me.  Shocked.  Bewildered.  Confusion written across his face.   The worst part?  He doesn't get up.  He just stays there, staring at me with sadness building up.  I help him up and try to roll with this the best I can.  If the roles had been reversed and G had done that with me right there, I would have firmly told him that was wrong and mean and we do not treat people this way.  But, this wasn't my kid and the teacher was with another kid at that moment.  So, I tell G to try asking if he can play with him.  At this point, G is broken.  He just looks down at his shoes.  I hate this.  I wanted to just turn around with him and leave this classroom.  I mean, this is what I see when I'm there for 5 minutes.  What else is going on over there?  Why are these kids so freakin' mean?  I know, I know...these are 2-3 years, all adjusting to a new environment.  Some haven't been in any other situations than home.  At daycare, G was the one that had a hitting problem.   It drove me crazy that he would react with hitting when he was frustrated!  Usually, it was over sharing a toy. Sharing is about the hardest concept ever for a 2/3 yr old.  However, I can guarantee you we didn't put up with it and worked really hard at correcting this behavior. He also had an amazing caretaker that worked with us on this and vice versa.  We finally conquered the hitting phase and had left that behind, however I have a feeling we may re enter this again with how he is being treated by other kids.  It just seems like these kids are pretty harsh, pretty quickly.
I can't seem to shake what I saw this morning.  How can kids this young re act this way already?  I suppose bullying starts in the home.  It starts with parents speaking up about it and teaching their kids what is wrong and what is right.  It starts with teaching kids respect.  Kids at that age have a natural reaction to get angry and frustrated quickly and do not have a lot of other ways to show that besides being physical.  I need to toughen up more and show him how to toughen up more.  Still...it's a bit much the first 2 weeks in.  It kills me to see him picked on.  I want to protect him. I want him to protect himself.  I want him to stand up for his friends.  Kindness and respect are so important to us to teach G.  I'm already looking forward to his 2nd preschool he'll attend.  It's a Montessori school and that form of education is very big on respect.  As for this situation...I'm going to focus on showing G how to react and how to treat his classmates, regardless of how he is treated.  I also found these books online that I'm buying so we can read them together.  Still, this morning...I just can't shake the look G gave me when he was pushed down.  It breaks my heart.

by Bob Somson & Maria Dismondy.  Available at Amazon

by Sandy Ragona, Amy Tranel.  Available at: Amazon

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

But, This Morning...

This summer's last leg finds me lost in myself.  Tummy issues.  Lack of staying healthy and doing anything about it.  Off centered and unfocused.  1,001 things bugging me.  I think the drought and months long heat have gotten to me and has withered me up.  With the newfound time I have on my hands I have decided to try my best to steer my ship in the right direction.  

I had a really hard time waking up today, but this morning...
I kissed my best friend farewell for 5 days and bid him safety and good luck on his journey (the journey of rock n' roll that is...we've got some big  shows happening in Omaha and Little Rock and I keep my fingers crossed they go well!)

I was in a brain fog, but this morning...
The rain greeted our world.  The windows came open.  The air conditioner was turned off.  The candles were lit.

I was dreading working out, but this morning...
I was encouraged by the rain and chose to do yoga.  Opening my heart and accepting the challenge was hard, but worth it.

I was cold from the windows open, but this morning...
I remembered this amazing sweater I picked up a few weeks ago (on a blazing hot day).  I found it digging through racks of clothes at a thrift store and instantly thought, "It's my farm sweater!"  I pictured myself wrapped in it walking about a drafty, old farmhouse (yep, still obsessing).  Chai tea in hand in the wee hours of the morning before my boys were awake and amid the heat, purchased it right then and there.  And today, today of all days, I got to wear it!  It's exactly what I needed.  The little bit of tiny goodness on a first day of redirecting.

I thought this morning was going to be just like any other, but this morning...
This morning was better.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Ticking Clock

Waiting.  We are stuck waiting.  My evasive post on Giving In or Swimming On, was a glimpse into what's been going on with our house purchase.  We're stalled.  Things were on it's way.  A hiccup here, a trip there.  I had no idea how much goes into buying a rural property, especially one that's built around the turn of the century.  Problems galore. However, we were taking the hits one at a time.  It needs this and that fixed.  It's in a flood zone.  It has some lead paint that needs to be removed.   It needs new heating for the winter unless we want to spend a fortune using the boiler.  It needs a complete cleaning and a ton of tree trimming and the list goes on and on.  We were taking the issues in stride (somewhat) until a few weeks ago when we got hit with the big problem.  No one wants to loan on this property because of the appraisal rules.  So, even though we are approved for a loan, no one is approving to loan to this property.  This beautiful, vintage farm that has SO MUCH potential.  It doesn't have anything around it that's similar to the property to compare it to in the appraisal.   I think good for it!  It's unique.  Apparently, being your own personality isn't so hot in the housing industry.  It makes banks nervous to loan on it.  So, what have we been doing about this issue?  I've been on the phone calling bank after bank asking if they will loan it to us.  Sending paperwork over and over to them so they can see the info about the house.  Getting told, "No, I'm sorry we can't help you, but good luck because the house and property is gorgeous."  I KNOW!!!  Don't tell me this anymore!  It just makes it hurt more to hear no!
A few days ago, I found a possible lead with bank #9.  So, right now we are waiting while they sift through our paperwork.  Waiting for them to determine whether they will work with us and help us move into our dream home.  The most frustrating part is that it doesn't matter how hard we had worked at having good credit...it's just about the house at this point.  We are weeks away from our closing date and I'm sure that will have to be pushed back if we do end up landing a deal.  So,  here we are.  Holding our breath.  I'm fortunate to have no urgency to get out of our current house.  Our goal is to turn this one into a rental when we get the farmhouse.  So, we need to remember to be gracious for the roof we have over our heads now.  I just felt us out on the farm.  Maybe I'm wrong.  Maybe I just wanted it so badly that I made it all up.  I have determination, but I'm also disheveled and beat down from this deal.  It's a ticking clock for us at the moment...

  This clock is from Mamaleanne, a vintage Etsy shop.  It has sold, but check out  her great vintage finds here:  Mamaleanne

Thursday, August 2, 2012


Today marks the end of an era for me and my son.  Monday he starts full time preschool.  It's early to start him, I know.  He is just so darn intelligent, curious and busy that we feel he needs so much stimulation outside of our home.  He loves to be at daycare right now 3 days a week (after he gets over the separation anxiety we still go thru each time when he's dropped off).  However, Tuesday and Thursdays are OUR days to spend together.  There's something different about hanging out smack in the middle of the work week.  Whether running errands together or having an indoor picnic, I've fallen in love with this time with him in the middle of the days.  I worry for him.  He's not so good at goodbyes and he takes awhile to warm up to new people, but the moment he is comfortable he shines.  I'm trying to remember with every door closing, one is given the opportunity to open.  This time will become mine again.  To do with it, I'm not quite sure yet. Right now, we are fortunate to not have to push me back to work full time (so thankful!), so I will be working part time still, but for the rest of my time..now I'm peeking into a key hole and wondering what could possibly be on the other side.

Image from Pinterest:  http://pinterest.com/pin/29906784995000912/

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Giving In or Swimming On?

Where do you draw the line of fighting for something you really believe in and the idea if it's not meant to be, it's just not meant to be?  That it is too much work to keep forcing it.    On one hand, things wouldn't always happen if we didn't go after them.  It wouldn't be worth it if it was easy.  On the other hand, sometimes you just can't force things.  Finding that balance between is hard.  How long do you keep not excepting no as an answer or ignoring the 20 other things you are altering to make this one big thing happen?  When do you decide that swimming upstream against the current is a bit too exhausting right now?  Do you stay determined and not get pushed down by the obstacles or do you give in and sink?

Friday, July 27, 2012

Hot Springs

I have taken a little girls trip to Hot Springs, Arkansas this weekend. I've never been and have always wanted to check it out. So far, it's not what I was expecting. It seems a little run down and you can see at one time that the buildings and old, boutique hotels were hoppin', they just haven't had a lot of love put into them since then. The people are sweet as can be and that definitely makes a place enjoyable. We haven't hit the bathhouses yet, but I'm looking forward to that experience as that's a big part of what Hot Springs is all about. The apartment we are renting is really cute with huge ceilings and Shabby Chic decor. Definitely my taste! A little French/European touch with vintage furnishings. I love it! Here are a few photos thus far...Happy Weekend to you!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Farm Chic

Summer is moving fast.  Our life is full of appointments, but all for good reason.  We are 6 weeks away from closing on a new house.  Remember that little sneak peak I gave a post or two ago?  I'm hesitant to post anymore photos until I am standing inside, key in hand.  I just want this to finalize and I'm careful to not jinx anything.  I'm sure it will work out, but just careful.  I have been waiting for this house, this land for years.  Right outside town.  Quiet, peaceful, open space.  A little farm with a creaky, old house.  Walls with 112 years of stories.  I.Simply.Can't.Wait.   I anticipate the newness of living.  Of how your daily routine changes when you move into a new place.  Of what life will be like in the country.  Of watching my little one romp around on our land.   Until it is truly ours, here are some photos from my Pinterest board Farm Chic that are inspiring me for farm living.

Original source:  http://witanddelight.tumblr.com/post/18189847278

Original source:  http://gardens-in-the-sun.tumblr.com/post/8499982883

Original source:  http://toocutethings.blogspot.com

Sunday, June 24, 2012

The Flaming Lips - SOLD OUT!

My weekend started early on Thursday and a weekend it was!  We (Mammoth) produced  2 nights (SOLD OUT!) of The Flaming Lips.  It was in conjunction with the 100th Anniversary of Liberty Hall, a historic venue that is an independent film theater full time and an event hall on the side.  We had our wedding reception here and it's such a unique piece of this town.  My company had been trying to book 2 nights with this band for years and it timed perfectly with this celebration.  I was also happy to be involved with the block party that happened outside of the venue on Friday and we even streamed that performance live outside on a big screen for block party patrons to get a piece of the action as well.  We weren't sure how well it would do, but the block was packed and it was such a great time!  I saw so many familiar faces that make Lawrence, KS what it is.  Everyone was there!
One of the best parts of this concert was that it was G's first!  The hubby and I were waiting for just the right one to take him to and a Flaming Lips show is one big party of music and love.  He was a little overwhelmed at first, but  he really liked it.  I mean, what 2 year old doesn't like jumbo balloons and confetti flying everywhere.   We just wanted him to get a glimpse of the whole scene since he's such a music lover.  We didn't stay long the night we took him, but I have a feeling he's going to be a concert lover.
There are times when working in the music industry brings on a big case of burn out because I've been doing it for so long and it's a high maintenance industry.   Then, there are times when I go to a show like this and  and the crowd's reaction gives me goosebumps.  Makes me remember being that girl shoved up against a barricade in the front row, all sweaty and loving every bit of it. Shows like this make me remember why I do what I do and why I sometimes find it very hard to do anything different.  This show was legendary.  For our company and for our town.  It was the perfect way to kick off the summer!

Beautifully painted on the ceiling of the venue.

Catching confetti.


Block Party right outside celebrating the 100th Anniversary of Liberty Hall!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Fingers Crossed

It needs A LOT of work, but my fingers are crossed that it's the one.  I can feel us here.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Happy 2nd Gotcha Day!

2 years ago today we walked into an orphanage and met our son.  We walked out never to be the same...

Happy Gotcha Day, Oliver Gadisa Lyric!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Under The Cherry Tree

I've been really agitated lately. Trying hard to not let the annoyances hang on me. I have been greeting my days this week slowly & quietly to start fresh each day. This spot sits in my backyard. It used to just be an unvisited corner next to a cherry tree. Now, it's my morning bliss.

Because a tree should always have something beautiful hanging from it.

The scent of honeysuckle reminds me of a long time ago.

This spot is my new favorite place to just sit and slowly wake up...meet me under the cherry tree.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Family Night Out

We enjoyed a family date night out last Friday and went to a KC Royal's Game.   It was G's first sports outing.  I was surprised that he was more interested in the peanuts and popcorn than the game considering he is such a big sports fan.  I think he was a little over stimulated, but he had a great time taking in all the new experiences.  I must say, I love taking my little family out and about together, making our own first memories.  He even got on the Jumbotron and got a big "ahhhh..." out of the crowd.  It was so cute!
We left during the 7th inning because this little guy of mine can not sit still to save his life, but we had so much fun regardless.

He thinks the Iphone self photo shot option is hilarious.  I'm pretty sure this family photo will be dear to my heart for a long time.  I love it!

They were giving away these big, floppy sun hats.  Count me in!  I will never pass up one of these!

He got a chance to play around the kid's batting area.

Just being at the ballpark makes it feel like summer has begun!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

The Wisdom of a Fortune Cookie

I've come to the conclusion that I am a big heap of indecisive, fast paced, creative mess of a gal.  There is so much I want to do right now that it's impossible to fit it all into my life at this moment.  I want to be able to slow down and appreciate each  moment, which is a Buddhist daily goal I try hard to grasp.
I always hated the question of "What do you want to be when you grow up?"    Well, I want to be a million things.  Why do I have to choose one?  And, in the moments of today I am more than one.  I am more than two.  I am more than three.  My curiosity and interests get the best of me and as much as I try to sit peacefully for a moment, my mind races full speed ahead of ideas and what ifs.  Nag, nag, nag.  A piece of writing that is cramped in my head that I must get out to give space to something else to develop.  The 15 things that are wrong with the current event I'm promoting and what I need to do to fix them.  Ideas of new activities I can do with my son.  People I need to sit down and have a drink with (and I have been making that happen, which I love!).  The yoga mat I ran to a month or so ago has gotten dusty in the corner and I'm kicking myself for that.  I did feel so much more centered during those weeks of commitment.  
Breathe.  Chill out.  Not all of it may ever get done, or develop into something great.  
I want to welcome hot, slow summer days that await ahead.  I guess for myself that is going to be a challenge to get to, but definitely worth trying.

I need to follow the advice of the ol' Fortune Cookie wisdom that I recently received...

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


Today's early morning hours have me finishing up a few work things, cramming a few more things into my suitcase and shortly, turning on my out of office for my work email.  We are headed to Coachella!
We sat out last year since we weren't ready to leave the wee one just yet.  I've lost count of how many Coachella's we've been too...almost all of them at this point.  It's become kind of a springtime tradition for us and a lot of the bands playing we get a chance to book in the Midwest so it's nice to see everyone's reactions to them at a big festival like this.
We both could use this quick vacation to soak up some sun, some music and most of all to just enjoy getting out of town for a little bit.  I will miss my munchkin dearly, but he will have a vacation of his own with his cousins.  Have a great rest of the week and weekend!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Unanswered Questions

I've been thinking about adoption a lot lately.  Our story, his story...how I want to do so much more to help the orphan situation worldwide and raise awareness.  When I find moments to slow my day down and think, I always come back to this topic.  It pulls me.  It breaks me, but it inspires me to do something.
I have to admit, I have gotten caught up in life and haven't pursued my interest and connection to adoption like I wanted.    Like I thought I strongly would.  I'm disappointed in myself.  Sure, we talk to G about his story all the time, but as he is becoming more aware of his surroundings I want to really focus on it.   22 months ago, we got home and hit the ground running.  Life became more about trying to be a good mother to a child in general that I didn't spend as much time as I should concerned about the fact he is adopted. That the fact is adopted from a country all the way around the world.   That is changing now.  He is becoming more independent.  As I watch him and his curiosity develop, I'm brought back to who does he look like?  What will he think of all of this?  How badly I want to take him back there and let him see.  See it all.  The streets, the pastures, the people, the smells.   How I want to have conversations that he understands so I can ask him if I'm doing this right.
And, then there is her...I have dreams of her.  A lot of them right now.  Little, tiny her.  The other night I was doing her hair.  Little curls, twisting and conditioning them with love.  Oh, how I love to do his hair so this is where that dream came from.   I know we are not ready, but sometimes I don't want that to matter.   It's starting to tug on me.  Just like it did for him.  I had a sense of urgency with him.   Something was wrong in my heart and I rushed to get through the paperwork.  I had no idea why I was in such a big rush (as I knew this was not something that could be rushed) until I saw him and knew why I was here.  To mother him.  For now, she might just appear in my dreams.  He did.

Here we are in Addis Ababa in our hotel room.  The first time I played music for Gadisa.  Bob Marley.  I don't know if it was the Iphone or the music itself that he was intrigued by.  He is a fan of both now!  

I made this bracelet for him months before we even met him.  It sat waiting on my dresser for his little arm.  I wore a matching Ethiopia necklace the whole time we waited for him...and I still wear it sometimes.
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