Category Archives: birthdays

october 20: the lost year edition

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It’s my birthday. 37. Kinda weird to type that. I took the day off of work today and went to the gym with my trainer, Kristi, and my friend, Tori. Kristi always does a theme workout based on the birthday girl’s age and she asked me when I came in, “27???”. I thought she was joking, but she wasn’t. So, I guess that’s nice! I’m finally at an age where I don’t mind getting carded. <P.S. Someone really needs to show me how to pose next to someone who is half my body weight…>

Anyway, it’s been a LONG time since I’ve blogged. And even then, I wasn’t blogging as regularly as I’d like and when I look back, I realize that this whole last year has been sort of a blur. Here’s a recap that is mostly personal and doesn’t encompass a lot of what’s gone on around me:

  • October – Went back to work last October 8th in a new-ish job in the advertising business group with a new manager named Diego. Briar was almost 5 months old at that point. They had transferred me from one group to another while I was on maternity leave. (This is important later in my story below…)
  • November – hosted Thanksgiving for the Crawfords, Briar started crawling, got her 1st two teeth
  • December – hosted a huge summit for work that completely stressed me out
  • January – had a nervous breakdown with the stress of work, pumping and lack of sleep. Started seeing a shrink and got on some meds to try to help me out.
  • February- Briar started refusing to nurse, so I stopped pumping at work and we put her on formula in the daytime (mommy guilt increases!), we find out Hutch is not doing well at Megumi so frantically scramble to try to get him into a new school for Pre-K
  • March – honestly don’t remember much…we got into Hutch’s new school (Cedar Crest Academy)…yay! Oh, and we went to see the cherry blossoms.
  • April – Tulips, finished breastfeeding for good and I left the family for 5 days to take a work trip to New York. No one died.
  • May – Briar turned 1 and started walking a week after her birthday.
  • June – Hutch turned 4
  • July – Hutch started his new school on July 1st. On July 17th, I got laid off for the 2nd time in 2 years. (Literally two years and six days apart.) There are a lot of things involved with why but mostly it was because the group they had transferred me into while on maternity leave had to cut 40% of its people, so I was one of the lucky ones. Ha.
  • August – I got rehired into a different group (Bing Advertising) and started three weeks after I got laid off. Amy and her kids came for a three week visit.
  • September – Hutch started Pre-K after 2 fun months doing summer camp. Amy went back to Japan. I left the family for a 4 day trip to Tampa, Fl for work. No one died.
  • October – here we are again… Pumpkin patches, pumpkin spice lattes, oh, and Briar has 8 teeth coming in at one time.

So, in looking back over this year, I feel like it’s probably been the hardest one for me in the course of my life. I hope that I’m able to say that later in life, too, because things really aren’t so bad, but I just feel so drained. Two very spirited kids (because Briar is NOT the easygoing baby that everyone promised me I’d have after Hutch), hormonal crap, two very stressful jobs, and one layoff have taken their toll on my mental health. My whole goal of working towards “Balance”, which was the word I picked for my year this year, seems almost laughable at this point.

I know that things are going to start swinging up as Briar gets easier and I get more accustomed to my new job in Bing, so I am taking this first day of my 38th year to spend time by myself and write down a few things that I’d like to accomplish/experience over the next 12 months:

  • More date nights with Buck. He’s such an amazing partner/husband/father/friend and I want to have more time with him removed from the craziness of our crazy children
  • More exercise. I started exercising with Tori at Fly Fitness when Hutch was 18 months old and it really changed my mindset. So, right now I’m doing one day a week (Fridays at lunch…when meetings don’t get in the way), but I’m going to start trying to go in the evenings once or twice a week. It’s VERY difficult for either one of us to be at home alone at bedtime and put Briar down with Hutch around because he doesn’t like to sit alone in the living room while we put her down. But, there’s a class that Kristi teaches at 5:45 that’ll get me home in time to do bedtime, so I’m going to start forcing myself to go….regardless of my exhaustion. Because I always feel better after a hard workout. Especially with Kristi.
  • More cooking. I am finishing a six-week program called Onvo this week. It has changed the way I look at food and hunger and I want to keep expanding on this work that I’m doing. In a nutshell, it’s about eating ONLY whole foods, cutting out processed stuff like white sugars/flours and recognizing hunger so that you only eat when you need to. I’m not perfect at this, but I’ve been a lot better with the exception of alcohol, which is something I still need to work on. But, it’s rekindled my love for cooking and I want to figure out how to prioritize this so that I can put some healthy meals in the fridge for weeknight dinners.
  • More creativity. This one is going to be hard for me to figure out how to add in, but I really want to do more reading, blogging, mindfulness projects like One Little Word or the Brene Brown project. I just feel like I have so little time to myself that I’m not sure how to make this happen, but I am going to try to take more personal days from work (like today) and fill up my tank so that I can feel like I’ve MADE something. I’ll start posting more from my phone so that I can capture and document our lives, which will free me from the sadness I feel about not writing down memories, like how I’ve just missed documenting most of Briar’s 1st year and a half.

Anyway, that’s what’s going on in my head on my 37th birthday. I’m off to a spa in a little while to get waxed and mani/pedi’d . Then, hopefully out for a fun dinner with the kids and a nice night with my sweet, who spends all of HIS free time trying to make everyone else in our house happy. I’m a lucky girl and I want to focus on that in this next year!

feb 15: the 9-month edition

These pictures were actually taken on Feb 16th, but I’m putting them on her 9 month birthday for the sake of tradition. And also because the only picture I took on Saturday was of the yogurt store (see at the very bottom). It was a long day.

Anyway, back to our little lady who’s TWO THIRDS OF THE WAY THROUGH HER FIRST YEAR!!! AGGHHGHGGHGHHG. Going so fast. Here are the things that she’s up to these days:

  • Pulling herself up on EVERYTHING
  • Trying to kill herself at every possible moment
  • Sticking EVERYTHING in her mouth
  • Not sleeping more than 2-3 hours at a time still
  • SMILING ALL THE TIME (!)
  • Saying “da da da”, “ma ma ma”, “neh neh neh”
  • Waving (!) …this started about three weeks ago, I think
  • Crying whenever Mama puts her down or walks out of the room
  • Trying to follow Hutch EVERYWHERE! She loves her brother!
  • Eating everything and anything. They said at school that they’ve never seen a baby her age eat that much before.

Her height and weight are still a lot more petite than I was expecting for a baby of mine. She’s 15lbs 15oz, which puts her in the 10-25% and she’s 27.5” tall, which puts her in the 25-50% percentile. All of this is according to the doc. I am often asked if she’s small for her age, but I truly think it’s more because she has no hair, not because she’s that little.

Anyway, when she’s not sick, she is an absolute sweet doll that lights up a room with her smile. She’s clearly determined and feisty and her spirit is showing more and more each day. We can’t wait to keep watching her over the next few months of incredible change as she shows us even more of her personality.

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jan 27

Being a Monday, I got to the end of the day and hadn’t taken a single pic. So, here’s what I have for you. Hutch on the couch watching a show before bed.
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And, since it’s my dad’s 80th birthday today, here is the requisite “Happy Birthday” song.

Love you, Grandy!!

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birthday fun (?)

It’s my birthday time, so since we couldn’t really do a date night (due to the 5 month old and the 3 year old), we did the same “date day” that we did last year. It was hard to leave Briar in daycare, but I recognized that it was probably going to be one of the few times that Buck and I could spend an extended day alone for awhile, so we did it.

We started by taking the kids to school and then I pumped in the car on the way into Seattle (so, om not quite as “free” S I was last year). We then tried to have breakfast at Lola, but the wait was too long. So, we headed to Le Pichet, which is at the top of a lot of “Best Breakfast in Seattle” lists. It was a lot of bread. But, tasty bread.
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From there, we headed to the market, bought some local, organic creams, and then continued our eating tour of Seattle. We headed to a coffee shop and then grabbed a “Matsuri Dog” at a street cart called “Japon Dog”.
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We kept walking (to burn off all this eating!) and then hit up the market again to go to Steelhead Diner for lunch, just like we did last year. This is where we first discovered poutine. Our lives have never been the same. They make it with Beecher’s cheese curds and it’s unbelievable.
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After that, we made one more stop on the way back to the car to get some s’mores popcorn at a fancy Japanese gourmet popcorn shop. Then we headed back to Bellevue (while I pumped yet again) and went to see “Gravity” (a new Sandra Bullock /George Clooney movie) at the 3D IMAX at Lincoln Square. It was literally breathtaking and made us both feel a bit sick after 90 minutes. But, it’s amazing. And will likely win a lot of Oscars.
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Today, on my actual birthday, the kids decided to gift me with no sleep. Briar woke up every single hour (not exaggerating) from 10:30 until 6am and Hutch woke up at 6ish (about an hour earlier than usual) so Mama was pretty much a basketcase all day.

My mom came over in the morning to make a birthday cake with Hutch. They made gingerbread with lemon curd frosting. And, just to make it even more “personal” for me, they put a Lightning McQueen candle on it. :)

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We tried to do SOMETHING fun, but that was basically just gong to the mall, where I got some nail polish (my new obsession) at Sephora. And then we headed to Red Robin (one of the 3 or so restaurants where we can find something Hutch will eat). Hey, at least I got a nice tall beer. And they sang for us and gave us a sundae, which was one for Hutch.
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And then this happened. While I was pumping that night, I somehow let my foot fall asleep and when in stood up, I landed on it wrong and ended up fracturing my 5th metatarsal. Super painful and was the icing to a pretty hard day. :(
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Well, hopefully this doesn’t mean this year will suck. And I can hopefully save up the fun that I was hoping to have and make my 37th birthday next year a really fun day. At least I have an amazing husband and two precious kids to celebrate life with EVERY DAY and that makes up for one random crappy birthday.

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