Oh, Crappy Day!

That pretty much sums up my day yesterday. It started at midnight, as Tuesday was slowly creeping into Wednesday. The baby woke up crying. She felt warm, but nothing too serious. She's had a cold for a few days now and a stinky cough too. Somethingwas bothering her though and I couldn't figure out what it was. She was fidgety, restless.

My husband and I took turns holding her, comforting her, trying desperately to get her back to sleep but every time we gently lowered her back into her crib she would cry. This went on for 2 hours. Finally, he said, "I'm just going to give her a bottle." Even though she wasn't hungry, it was enough to help her fall back asleep.

The next morning, Big J had school and thankfully Little J had a doctor's appt. It was just supposed to be a check-up but I asked him to listen to her chest. The last time we were there he heard her cough and metioned RSV. I had never heard of it, but apparently it's a pretty serious virus.

Everything sounded clear, so it seems like it's just a regular cold. I just feel bad for her because it seems like she's had it all winter. He did say that she has Thrush, something else I have never heard of. On top of all that, she had to get a shot so Little Miss J was not a happy camper.

I felt like I was running around all day yesterday and I had no time to do anything I wanted to. I really should start waking up earlier, before the kids get up, and try to get some stuff done.

I'm bummed too because I didn't get a chance to participate in the Thursday Theme over at Stacey's. Maybe I'll get a chance later to post a picture.

Here's hoping today is a slow day. One of those days you stay in your pj's all day!!


What I'm Loving Now

Big J got a new board game from her Grandma and she simply loves it. It's a Disney Princess game of course. Yesterday she woke up at 7 a.m. and wanted to play. This morning it was the same story.

The problem is, I'm so not a morning person. Sometimes I wish I liked coffee so that I could be a little more awake in the morning.

I'm also loving Pampers. I've always been a Huggies girl, but I was recently converted. They fit so much better. I have a pack of Huggies that a friend gave me and since I can't refuse anything that's free, I've been using them this week. I actually miss the Pampers.

I found another blog that I'm loving too. It's called Overlooked. It's a really great idea. There are three parts to the challenge. First, you snap a picture of an everyday object like a coffee mug. Then, you write a journal entry about it; why it's important to you. The last part is to combine the two and make a scrapbook page. I'm not much of a scrapbooker, but I love the idea of taking pictures of everyday things. I chose a Dopey mug for the first challenge. I don't drink coffee or tea, but I fill it to the brim everyday. Once it's full of hot water I pop in one of my daughter's bottles to warm it up.

And last but not least, I'm loving this little creation Big J made yesterday. Isn't she sweet??


My Best Shot

Making brownies for Grandpa's birthday yesterday. Mmmmmmm! My mother always used to let us kids lick the bowl after baking something. It's one of my favorite memories growing up. I'm just passing on the tradition people. :)

For more great shots, check out Mother May I


My Little Girl is Going Big Time!

Last night my husband and I registered Big J for Kindergarten. KINDERGARTEN! I can't believe it. Where did the time go?

I liked the school, but it makes me a little nervous that she'll be taking the bus. Not because it's someone else driving her around, but because there will be other kids on the bus. Older kids. Kids who might tease her. Kids who might not let her sit down.

Oh God, I can feel the tears welling up in my eyes already. What if she feels scared or lonely? What if someone bullies her? Ugh! I'm going to be a wreck the day that I have to send my little girl, my baby, off to big kid school.

In my heart, I know she'll be fine. She makes friends easily. I just can't help imagine every worst case scenario I can think of. I suppose it's natural. If you think about it, it's the first of many times I'll have to watch her grow up from the sidelines. She doesn't need her mommy as much anymore. And even though there are times I want her to be more independent, part of me will be heartbroken when she takes those steps towards becoming her own person. I wish she could stay little forever.


My Collection

This is my collection of coffee table books. I didn't intend to start collecting them, but I just kept finding photography books that I love. Most of them are from celebrity photographers like David Lachapelle and Mario Testino. I've got about 20 or so. They inspire me.

I just starting adding to my collection too. I thought it was about time I stopped admiring everyone else's pictures and started taking some of my own. So I picked up a book called "Professional Children's Portrait Photography" by Lou Jacobs Jr. It's very cool. There are tons of tips and advice from photographers about working with children and getting into the business.

Check out all the other bookworms over at Stacy's.


The Love of My Life

She may drive me crazy and, at times, bring me to tears, but the little girl looking back at you is the greatest love of my life. We've been through so much together, learning as we go. I can't imagine any other little person changing my life as much as she has. I only hope that I am the kind of mother she needs to help her in her journey.


Good Heavens!

I was driving in the car yesterday, on my way to Target, when Big J and I got into an awkward conversation.

"Everybody has a mom, right mommy?"

"Well sweetie, unfortunately not everyone has a mommy."


"Some kids have mommies who are heaven."

"What's heaven?"

"It's a place in the clouds where your soul goes when you die."

"You're not gonna die, right mommy?"

"No sweetie."

"And daddy's not gonna die, right mommy?"


"And (Little J)'s never gonna die, right?"

"No way Jose."

"And my whole family's not gonna go to heaven, right mama?"

"No sweetie, you're stuck with us for a loooong time!"

I never know what to say when topics like this come up. How do you explain things like death and heaven and spirit and faith? Was it right to say that no not everyone has a mom. Should I have just played dumb, at least for a little while longer? She's only 4.


Blowing Bubbles: My Best Shot

I love this picture but I'm wondering if I should have left it in color. What do you think?

For more fabulous shots, head over to Tracey's place.



I was dressing Big J for school this morning and put a turtleneck on her. The first time she wore it, she thought the name was hilarious. This time she tried to remember the name.

Her: "Mommy is this my tadpole?"

Me: "No."

Her: "Oh, is it a tadpole neck?"

Me: "No sweetie, it's a turtleneck!" :)


First I was Alone. Then I was Silent. Now I can Breathe.

We finally had the conversation we should have had days ago. I hadn't planned on it. Really, I had given up. But, it was a long day yesterday and I fell apart at the end of the night. I gave both girls a bath. He helped get Big J dressed and then took the baby downstairs while I read her a story. When I got downstairs, I started folding laundry and he fed the baby. Then, he plopped her in my lap and asked if I minded if went into our office/playroom to get some stuff done. I hesitated.

I wanted to answer, "No, I don't mind." I wanted to answer that way, honestly. But, part of me wanted to say, "Yes, I mind. I'm tired. I want to relax. Why can't you put the baby to bed?" The other part of me, the part that is overflowing with mommy guilt, says, "I didn't get to put the baby to bed for two nights in a row because of work, just shut up and do it."

Long story short, I put the baby to bed. When I got downstairs, I went in to the office and asked if we could talk. As soon as I got the words out, I started crying. I'm such an idiot. I think that's part of the reason I don't want to talk all the time. I always end up crying.

I told him everything that I've been wanting to say. That I feel jealous of his role in this relationship. He leaves the house at 8 a.m. and comes home at 5:30. The kids are in bed by 7:30 no later than 8:00 p.m. When the both of us are home, most of the responsibility lies with me to clean, cook, dress, bathe, feed, and play. I tried to stay as positive as I could so he wouldn't feel like I was attacking him. He DOES do a lot to help. He's grown so much since our first child. When we had Big J the split was about 90/10. Now I would say it's about 70/30 and sometimes more when I'm working. I want him to know that I notice his effort, that I appreciate his help.

So I continued, telling him that I feel so guilty to even be having this conversation. That I should be grateful to be home with the kids. I shouldn't be complaining that playing with my children is exhausting sometimes. That I don't want to wake up sometimes because it's the same thing over and over and over again. To tell the same stories, to watch the same videos, to play the same games, to change diapers, to clean up the same mess.

All in all, it was a good conversation. He attempted to understand. He asked what he could do. The hard part is there's not much he CAN do. This is my role, for the most part. I feel like I just have to grow up and accept it. I'm a mom, for pete's sake. The baby is still so little, which makes it difficult to do a lot. I felt the same way when Big J was born. I felt like I wanted more, but it wasn't the right time. That's when I started feeling resentful. Why do I have to put my life on hold? His didn't change at all.

So that feeling is back, now that I have another baby. The difference is, this time I really have something I want. I have a reason to want to be on the computer instead of watching "The Little Mermaid." I finally have a passion, other than being a mom. Something else that defines me. Something else that makes me feel alive. If you've been reading this blog for a little while you might have noticed the change. I've been posting a lot more pictures, taking part in the Thursday Theme over at The Land of K.A. and Best Shot Monday at Tracey's blog. I've been obsessed with taking pictures and I've been so inspired by all the blogs I've found. I even contacted Maile at Relish about an OpenBook Workshop. Yesterday I got a catalog in the mail for adult classes at a local college and they are offering a Photoshop class. I am so taking it.

So, hopefully I can dig myself out of this funk I've been in for a while. I think talking to my husband helped. At least he knows where I'm coming from now. When I get frustrated I won't be so afraid to tell him why. Hopefully, he'll respond by continuing to help out.

Thanks to everyone who left a comment over the past few days. Your support means a lot. I'm so glad I've gotten back into blogging because I really feel like there's a community of women out there who just want to help each other. I love that!! Thanks again!!!


All Bundled Up: Thursday Theme

I didn't get a chance to edit this yet. I took a bunch of pictures outside yesterday in the bright sun and changed my ISO to 1600. Just playing around. I'll post more in the next few days. I got a cute pic of Big J blowing bubbles.

Check out more pictures at The Land of K.A.



Nothing was said. He got home late. I went to bed. We woke up and went on with the day like nothing had happened. And in the scheme of things, nothing really did. There was a misunderstanding. It happens all the time.

Still, I obsessed over what I was going to tell him. He needs an explanation, so he knows it's not his fault. He deserves to hear the truth. Problem is, I'm not sure what the truth is. I love him. With all my heart. I'm attracted to him, when the moment is right. Does that sound horrible? If it does, I can't help it. I can't turn my emotions on and off (although it sounds like a really nifty trick). I can't go from calling each other names to wanting to have sex. I'm not saying that's how it is, but you get the picture.

Part of me doesn't really want to know the truth. What if it is that I'm not really interested? In sex? With anyone? Could it be that my sex drive is non-existent? Is there something deeper? Am I really just tired?

I'd like to think so because then at least that means things could get better, like he said. When we've talked about this before, I've told him I'm not sure what the problem is. He doesn't buy it. He's a guy though. He needs a reason. I wish I could give him one.

What should I do? How can I make it better?



I'm sitting here thinking about what I want to tell my husband. He's not home, but he wants me to wait up so "we can talk."

Last night we had a fight. We were in bed. He wanted to have sex, but I just wanted to disappear under my comforter and drift off to sleep. I was joking around, telling him that I'm always so tired, that this is the way it's going to be while the kids are little and he said, "I could get better." At least...that's what I heard. He insists he said, "It will get better." Long story short, we did not have sex.

Here's the thing ~ the story is a long one. We've had problems on and off for a while. I'm not really sure what the deal is. I want to try and explain to him why it seems like I'm always shooting down his attempts to 'have a little fun' but I don't even know myself.

I want to tell him that I feel so bad for all the excuses I've come up with over the years. I want to tell him that I appreciate how patient he's been. I want to tell him that it's not him, at least not in the way that he thinks. I love him, but I feel so ... so ... so ... I don't know. Gosh, I can't even find the words here. There's just so much water under the bridge that even on the good days it feels like I have to try so hard to feel connected.

Sometimes I feel jealous of my husband. He's got it so easy. He gets to wake up at his leisure, (usually) take a nice, quiet shower, get dressed and walk.out.the.door. I'm left at home taking care of 2 kids and feeling guilty for wanting to be anywhere else but here. I am resentful ~ that's the word. I've talked about this many times before. I feel like my entire life was turned upside down when my daughter was born. Hubby's on the other hand was only mildly disrupted.

I could go on and on about the disparity between our everyday lives, but I'm so over it. I need to accept that things will never be equal. I will never get to sit on the couch and watch TV while Big J begs daddy to play with her. I am, after all, the mom. I'm the one they want.

Still, how can I stop looking at my husband with such envy? How can I get back to a place where we laugh and joke, where I look at him with loving eyes instead of anger? Ugh, part of me doesn't want to have this conversation. We've had so many different versions anyway. Me and my woe-is-me mommy rant. We keep coming back to the same thing. Or I keep using the same excuse. Not sure which one. What is my problem? The attraction is still there. Most of the time. And when it's not is when we're fighting, which seems like every day. I guess it's just the desire. I'll be the first to admit I'm a lazy lover. I'd rather just put on my pj's and go to bed. I feel awful saying this, but there are times all I think about is how much sleep I'm losing. I obsess about it. I count the hours I'm not getting.

I thought writing this all out would help me sort through my feelings, but I'm so confused. Really I'm just babbling. Sorry to put you through this. Ugh! He'll be home any minute. Wish me luck!

My Best Shot

I love opening the door to her room and seeing her smiling face every morning. What a way to start the day!!


What I'm Loving Now

Every night, after the girls are in bed, I do the same two things.

1. I curl up on the couch with my laptop and browse all of my favorite photography websites. Ladies like Maile at Relish, Kate at Juxtapose, Jessica from Jessica Claire Photography are all so inspiring. There are so many more blogs I have found and fallen in love with over the last few weeks, it would take me hours to link to them all. I stalk them for advice, for clues, for insight and to spark my own creativity. The only problem is that I end up spending so much time looking at other people's blogs that I don't actually get any work done. I promised myself that I would learn Photoshop and so far I haven't played with it at all.

2. Somewhere in between reading and watching television (my fave show right now is Friday Night Lights!), I get up to make one of these yummy treats.

When was the last time you had a S'More? Mmmmm! I've had one every night since Sunday. I can't stop myself!!

Have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday Theme: Contrast

I love this picture of Big J. She looks so cute in her leopard jacket. All I did for the contrast was open it in Picasa and hit the auto contrast button. I really have to learn photoshop though. It's on my list of things to do this year.

Check out all the other participants over at the


Finding the Way

More and more I've been thinking about what I want to do with my life. Little J is not so little anymore and the older she gets the more I feel like I need to start pursuing my dreams.

I've been on the fence for a while now about whether I want to continue writing. I love it, don't get me wrong, but I just haven't had a passion for it lately. My days and nights have been consumed with photography ~ stalking my favorite blogs, taking pictures of the girls, researching business opportunities, etc. I want to learn everything I can about it and I just don't feel the same way about writing right now. With that said, I also can't help my brain from coming up with ideas. Ideas for articles, blog posts, quizzes, books. I don't understand why this is happening. Things are constantly swirling around in my head, but I can't seem to push myself to pitch these ideas to a magazine or a website.

I think it's fear that keeps me from doing it. I'm stuck up in my head, dreaming about the way things could be without ever really putting myself out there to actually make them happen. I can't live like this anymore though. I don't have any direction and I hate that. The problem is I don't know where to start. A while ago I signed myself up for for a writing course. Should I cancel it? Should I give it one last shot and try to make some extra cash to pay for a new camera? Should I not think about any of this right now and focus on getting us out of debt? If that's the right answer, then what happens to my dreams? They get put on hold again. If that keeps happening, I'm afraid I'll become depressed. I'll have nothing to look forward to, nothing to strive for.

It's so hard right now with small children. I can't really do much of anything. Everything has to be done in spurts. 5 minutes - check my e-mail. 15 minutes - write a blog post. 25 minutes - fold the laundry. I can barely find time to shower in the morning. Ugh! I'm stuck! That's the only way I know how to describe my feelings right now. I wish I had a mentor or someone to tell me what to do. Exactly. In clear, easy steps. One by one. So I can check them off my list.

How did you decide to stop dreaming and actually start living? How did you know you weren't going to fail miserably and end up worse off than you were before? How did you find the time, the finances, the motivation?


This is Huge!!

Something monumental has happened in my house this morning.

I can fit into my old jeans!!!

Woo Hoo!

There still a size 10, but I'm so excited. I was wearing a 14 after Little J was born!


My Best Shot

This holidays for us were plagued with hacking coughs and yellow boogers, but it was still pretty great. I'm happy to be back in the swing of things though. Big J is back at school and that means I have at least 45 minutes in the morning all to myself. Woot! That's why I'm able to write this post actually.

Here's my Best Shot. I took this picture of Big J after her bath. She was wrapped in a blanket and her hair was wrapped in a towel. Only her cute little face was peaking out so what else to do but grab the camera!

Anyone out there care to tell my why my pictures aren't as crisp or sharp as all of you. What am I doing wrong? Is it the camera? Do I need a new lens? What's the secret? I know that's a loaded question, but I thought I'd ask.

Go check out all the other participants from Best Shot Monday and you'll see what I mean.


Trying to Find The Words

At 4 o'clock this morning, I was delirious thinking of ways to describe how loud my husband's snoring was.

Louder than a freight train.
More annoying than a jackhammer.
As obnoxious as a blow horn.
More ear piercing than a 2 year-old throwing a tantrum in the supermarket.

There's not a night that goes by that I don't get woken up by someone in this house. It's really starting to get old. Calgon take me away!!


Thursday Theme: Color Me Happy

This photo was taken on New Year's Day. Poor Little J was sick as a dog, but she still looks happy. My munchkin is always full of smiles even when she's got green gook coming out of her eyes.

For more great photos, check out The Land of K.A.


8 Things I Want in 2008

I'm not all that big on resolutions, but I really want to make some changes this year. I thought I'd put together a list so that I can check back every now and then and see how I'm doing or at least if I'm headed in the right direction.

1. I'm going to spend the next year learning anything and everything I can about photography. I'm going to practice more and take a Photoshop class. Hopefully I'll be able to gain some knowledge and confidence, enough to help me start a business. I am REALLY hoping to get some private instruction from Maile at Relish Photography. I love her style and she'll fly anywhere in the U.S. It might take me all year to save up the money to do it, but I know it'll be worth it.

2. It's gut check time - and I mean that literally! I HAVE to start exercising. Aside from chasing after my kids, I don't do any sort of physical activity. I feel so crappy all the time and I am so weak. It's really pathetic.

3. I need to start saving money. I've moaned about money problems before on this blog, but this is the year my husband and I start digging ourselves out. The house is up for sale and hopefully we'll be able to sell. I put an empty jar in the kitchen and whatever I have left over in my pockets at the end of the day goes in there.

4. I want to spend more time with my husband. Things have been so hard for so long, I think it's time we really start to build up our marriage. I'm afraid that it'll crumble under all this stress if we don't start nurturing it now.

5. I hope this year will bring me out from under the new baby funk. I had it after Big J was born. I felt so beat down from the strain of motherhood that I didn't recognize myself. I was mean and cranky all the time and I didn't enjoy doing any of the things I used to. After Little J was born, the depression came back but it wasn't as overwhelming. I feel like the fog is starting to lift.

6. I want to take a big family vacation this year. We are actually going to Disney in March, but it'll be with my husband's sister and her family. We'll be there for Little J's first birthday though so it will be really special. Anyway, I want to go somewhere just the 4 of us. Now that I'm working I feel like we are never together as a family.

7. Speaking of vacations, I'd like to have a girls only one with my sister and my mom for her birthday in August. I mentioned it to my sister and she thought it was a good idea.

8. Last, but certainly not least, I'd like to make some new friends. Even with Big J in preschool, I still feel so isolated as a mom. Case in point - I've starting *talking* to the Internet and no one's even out there listening. Maybe it's time to make some real life friends. No offense to anyone who might actually read my blabbering on a regular basis.

What would be on your list of 8 things for 2008?