Friday, January 11, 2013

“I carry your heart with me (I carry it in my heart)I am never without it (anywhere I go you go,my dear; and whatever is done by only me is your doing,my darling) I fear no fate (for you are my fate,my sweet)I want no world (for beautiful you are my world,my true) and it's you are whatever a moon has always meant and whatever a sun will always sing is you here is the deepest secret nobody knows (here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide) and this is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart I carry your heart (I carry it in my heart)” ― E.E. Cummings


This morning I hear music. I look around tryng to figure out where it was coming from. I look over to my iphone that was plugged in charging. It was emitting music, but had not been touched. I lift it up to see Pandora pop open and a song I had never heard before. I listen for a moment, captivated. I quickly screen captured the song so I could listen to it completely later.

I've been listening all morning.

I am in awe and humbled by the song and the profound connection such a spiritual song as to life right now.

Eyes wide open Sir Lance.....

My eyes are wide open.

Enjoy Every Sandwich

My last words to you….. “Enjoy that Sandwich”

I can’t believe that when we last spoke on Monday evening that would be the last time I heard your voice or the last words I ever spoke to you.

Like all of our conversations, you greeted me with my special ‘Hello’ in that high-pitched, falsetto teenage boys voice. A voice changing tones that we laughed about so many moons ago, when you journeyed from boy to man. Your greeting was always the gateway back to our younger years, when our friendship formed. Before all the complications of life and growing up. When we were young, innocent, inquisitive and so full of passion for life. We were going to take on the world….Sir Lance.

Then life got in the way. The 80’s came and went ~ Both of our hair getting larger than life. My journey led me to New York City, and yours in a different direction.

Everything in this life’s journey happens for a reason. I am giving thanks that our paths picked up where they left off and that you became once again an important part of my daily life. I will miss you more than words can ever express.

When I’m climbing up rocks or down ravines to get that perfect photograph, I will hear your sweet laughter, as you *got* me Sir Lance. You accepted me for exactly who I am and you helped me embrace the true joy of this Life’s extraordinary journey.

My last words to you…….seem so very profound today.

Not too long ago we spoke of those exact words ‘Enjoy Every Sandwich’ as we spoke of life, love, friendship, family and loss. You told me that you were concerned that I grieved so deeply for those I have lost. We made a promise to each other after that conversation Sir Lance…….

And this morning ~ as the sun rose in brilliant tones of red and pink against a slate gray sky……I watched a small hawk fly through the valley, calling out.

I smiled.

My eyes are wide open my sweet friend……… And I will give thanks every time I see a sign from you from the great beyond.

Until we meet again my dear friend ~ I will enjoy every sandwich.

And I will keep you in my heart for a while…..a long while.

Thursday, January 03, 2013

The Examined Life and Mason Jars

The Examined Life and Mason Jars

During his trial for heresy, Socrates is quoted as saying “The unexamined life is not worth living.”

He was on trial for encouraging his students to challenge the accepted beliefs of the time and think for themselves. The sentence was death, but Socrates had the option of suggesting an alternative punishment. He could have chosen life in prison or exile, but he believed that these alternatives would rob him of the only thing that made life useful: Examining the world around him and discussing how to make the world a better place.

Luckily, we don’t have to choose between an examined life and death. Bust sadly, most people avoid leading an examined life.

So where do Mason jars come into this thought process [OK, you all know me well enough by now to know I ramble.....]

My whole life I have been in love with Mason jars. They go hand and hand with my life. My Mamie and Nana taught me how to can using Mason Jars. I have been collecting the little pieces of my life in Mason jars for as long as I can remember.    Movie, Theater and Concert tickets collected through the years. I didn’t have a piggy bank, I had a Mason jar [and still do......about 15 of them filled with change and old subway tokens] I have jars filled with buttons and marbles [see, I haven’t lost all my marbles]. I use them to hold candles and flowers and........

On Pintrest I saw an idea of taking a Mason jar and writing on little pieces of paper over the new year all the things that have happened that you are grateful for, memories, etc. and collecting them in the Mason jar and on next New Year’s Eve open up the jar and read the little notes. Blissful. I am doing it!

But it also got me thinking. Whilst I am going to do the ‘add’ to Jar ['cause I am so good at adding things to Mason Jars] I decided to use one jar as my ‘Examined Life’ and put my ‘resolutions’ in the jar now.  As they are realized I will take the note out and also add that to the ‘into’ jar, so at the end of next year I can ‘Examine my Life’ along with celebrate my life.

My Resolutions this year fall under one category. It is a DO list. A concerted effort *~* to DO. The list is long and varied. There are things that will make me think, make me act, make my life the best life possible this year and more importantly, how to make the world around me a better place.

Here is to 2013.........a Year of Doing!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

I remember you as you were in the last autumn.
You were the grey beret and the still heart.
In your eyes the flames of the twilight fought on.
And the leaves fell in the water of your soul.

Clasping my arms like a climbing plant
the leaves garnered your voice, that was slow and at peace.
Bonfire of awe in which my thirst was burning.
Sweet blue hyacinth twisted over my soul.

I feel your eyes traveling, and the autumn is far off:
Grey beret, voice of a bird, heart like a house
Towards which my deep longings migrated
And my kisses fell, happy as embers.

Sky from a ship. Field from the hills:
Your memory is made of light, of smoke, of a still pond!
Beyond your eyes, farther on, the evenings were blazing.
Dry autumn leaves revolved in your soul.

poem by Pablo Neruda

Friday, October 14, 2011

"The truth knocks on the door and you say, "Go away, I'm looking for the truth," and so it goes away. Puzzling.”  Robert M. Pirsig.

This tends to be a theme in my life.  I am wondering if I will ever become truly cognizant of living in the present and acknowledging my truths.
Truth knocks often and I tell it to go away.  I know it is there, but I am not capable of accepting it.
Puzzling for sure

Sunday, July 31, 2011


Sweet, Sweet Sixteen.

Many thoughts come to mind when I say the word Sixteen.   It brings back memories of being sweet 16 myself.....a time when life was blossoming and I was on the cusp of womanhood.   Many firsts happened my Sixteenth year....some good, some bad, but all memories and moments to learn by.

Then the years roll forward and I watch two of my own daughters turn Sweet 16.   I know that for them, it was similar years.....that cusp of leaving the realm of 'childhood' and moving into the mysterious, complicated and delightful realm of 'womanhood'. 

and then to see so many more moons and sun circle the earth that now too, they have left the 'teen' years themselves.   It makes me realize how quickly time is fleeting......this cycle of life.

But for me, this Sweet Sixteen I speak of today is one that has been a long time coming [or so it seems].  This Sweet Sixteen is a Celebration......a countdown.  I finally feel like I am on a countdown in this journey of mine to health and well being.

This morning I stepped on the scale and I am within SIXTEEN pounds to my goal.  

16......I truly never thought I'd see this day, and it has been about sixteen years since I was at this goal weight, so the sweetness of the journey is coming to the realization that my lifestyle change and embracing myself and my health is working.....slowly and steadily.  Seriously, I had my doubts that I would finally be at this point.

But it is here ~ I am here.

Let the countdown begin!!!!

Friday, July 22, 2011


Went for a motorcycle ride.

I never ride on his bike.

I was never allowed to.

Things have changed.

Went for a ride to High Bridge.  To Circa, for a beer.

I had the beer, two to be exact.  He had diet coke.

At the bar there was a newspaper of a brewer.  It caught my attention.

On the cover is an older woman in a bath tub.

Her name is Mohave Niemi, and there she was, on the cover of the newspaper, naked, in her bath, with a smirk on her face that made me realize that I so wanted to be an eccentric old lady.

I mentioned this to him and his comment was "You are already an eccentric lady"

Wow, he does know me.

I was pleasantly surprised.

The creed of Rouge Ales is this:
"The Rogue Way."
•Listen generously.

•Speak straight.

•Be there for each other.

•Honor commitments.

•Give acknowledgement/appreciation.

I am thinking that I really like riding on the back of a motorcycle.
I really like stopping at Circa [yes, my motorcycle ride is all of 7 miles] and having a hand-crafted ale.
I'm thinking that I like the fact that I am already considered eccentric.
Now to just figure out what I can tag my image as an old lady naked in a bathtub to.

a year flies by

Rick moved to New Hampshire.

He got a house-share with some amazing guys.  Perfect for him, as my sister-in-law Victoria so eloquently stated.. "He is the eternal frat boy"

Rick needs his male bonding. Always has, always will.

Life was good.

I was alone, but I  am a very strong and capable woman, I could do this on my own.

On my own, I realized my heart and soul have been lost.

I realized that I had been hiding within my own skin.

I knew that I need to break myself free.

and that is where I am now.

Getting healthy on so many levels.

I've lost 72 lbs since last February 2010.

I am running.....


I am working on organizing my life, whilst still being a hands-on, all-attentive Momma.

That takes a lot of effort and commitment. 

I am content.

I am happy.

I am where I need to be.


where I have been......where I am going.

It has been way too long since I have sat and written about life.

Life has a funny way of just continuing, even if you haven't paused to recount what has happened.

What has happened since I last wrote.

A world of things have happened.

I stopped writing on the realization that I was living a lie.

The life I was living was not what I believed it was.

I've moved past that.

Since that time, Rick was laid off.  For a year.  For a year I carried us all.

I dealt with his depression, his thoughts of failure and tried all I could to lift him up.

I went back to work for benefits.  Making less money than I was making with my home-based business. but at least I had the safety-net of benefits.

That was a good thing, as while we were under Cobra, Emma Sage got sick.   What I thought as just a rash and a virus, turned  into a nightmare, with her being admitted to Goyeb Children's Hospital and the thoughts she had Leukemia. 

Yes, that scary, big word that all parents of a child with Down syndrome fear.   Leukemia.

After a week of being on pins and needles, a bone-marrow aspiration.  A few immature blasts.  It turns out that it was a unknown virus.  We were spared this round.

But it meant that as soon as Cobra ran out,  if he was not gainfully employed with benefits, I would have to venture out of my safe-haven and get a job with benefits.

He worked contract.  He made more money contracting than he did with his permanent full-time job. 

For that I give thanks.

I went back to work for benefits.

I am still working.

Rick got a job with New Hampshire.

It meant uprooting the family.

With two in college and Otto just about to start high school......

I paused.

I reflected.

I realized that what was wrong, so terribly wrong in my relationship had not changed.

I wasn't going to move.

I kept my job with benefits and Rick moved to New Hampshire.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Whoa.....where does the time go....

Well, the Rambling Momma has been rambling, but mostly on Emma Sage's blog, because I never seem to have any extra time or energy to ramble here....the place for me to ramble.

As you know, I love photography....has been a life-long passion and one that I try to improve upon every day.

We have a family wedding on Sunday [my brother-in-law, Jim's, brother Ed] The whole family was invited and it was truly a magical day. We ate, drank, danced and celebrate the beautiful union of Ed and Svetlana.

But boy is this Momma tired, as on the 4th of July, Svetlana asked Jim [my bil] and I if we would photograph their wedding. We both said yes, and what a job it, but oh, so tiring.

Here are few of the photographs I took...I figured I'd upload them here as I get them online.

So tell me......'How do you think I did?' you think I might have a vocation for being a wedding photographer? I seriously thought that this would be a fun and rewarding weekend job.DSC04968
The Beautiful Bride
The Beautiful Bride and her dress
The ceremony [which was in an Eastern Orthodox Church] and a very moving ceremony.

and my little Miss.....

Monday, February 13, 2006

Floating wine glass 1

Floating wine glass 1
Originally uploaded by annikaleigh.
I had a very busy week and weekend, and yesterday in the snow storm I opened a bottle of Merlot and decided to photograph my wine glass throughout the day as it followed me as I puttered around the house and just relaxed.

Floating wine glass 2

Floating wine glass 2
Originally uploaded by annikaleigh.

Floating wine glass 3

Floating wine glass 3
Originally uploaded by annikaleigh.

Floating wine glass 5

Floating wine glass 5
Originally uploaded by annikaleigh.

Floating wine glass 4

Floating wine glass 4
Originally uploaded by annikaleigh.

Floating wine glass 1

Floating wine glass 1
Originally uploaded by annikaleigh.
had a very busy week and weekend, and yesterday in the snow storm I opened a bottle of Merlot and decided to photograph my wine glass throughout the day as it followed me as I puttered around the house and just relaxed.

Floating wine glass 6

Floating wine glass 6
Originally uploaded by annikaleigh.
had a very busy week and weekend, and yesterday in the snow storm I opened a bottle of Merlot and decided to photograph my wine glass throughout the day as it followed me as I puttered around the house and just relaxed.

Thursday, January 26, 2006

An Angel.....and a Very Special Gift

"An angel, robed in spotless white,
Bent down and kissed the sleeping Night.
Night woke to blush; the sprite was gone.
Men saw the blush and called it Dawn." (Paul Laurence Dunbar (1872-1906)

I have been so remiss......

This blog stands neglected.....and a response to an incredible giver has gone unspoken.

I was a very delightful and thoughtful way.

I recieved a package and with great delight, Miss Emma Sage and I opened it to see what was inside. I took pictures [but my digital battery was dead and of coarse there were no batteries to be we used a disposable 35mm....and you guessed it, it is missing in action.....but when I find it and have the pictures developed, I will share the photographs.]

My giftee gave me the gift that will be celebrated and recalled for the rest of my years, as every December, when the air is crisp and cold and the season of lights is upon us.....I will unpack my Christmas boxes and bring out one-by-one all the angels of delight.

Our box was filled with Angels......

Glass angels,,,,,,,,Silver Angels,,,,,,,,Precious Hand-Made Angels.

An Angle of White with a burgandy heart.........that looked like a glazed cookie to delicious to eat.

Angles with Bells.........

Angles that hung so beautifully on my Christmas Tree.........this year, and for all my Christmas' to come.

Miss Emma Sage was taken back by how many individually wrapped gifts there were.....and for a little girl who just loves to unwrap paper, this was truly the best part for her. She would open and then 'ooooo and Awe' and tell me 'Oh Mommy, how beautiful'.

Thank you so much my secret was truly a magical and beautiful gift.

Saturday, December 10, 2005

This is one of the pigs from my collection. Rick brings me back pigs from all over the world....this one is from Costa Rica. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Whole Momma Group Gifty thingy....

This is for my Whole Momma group, gifty-thinging.
Here is my filled in blanks!
Fill in the blanks:If I could get away with it, I'd steal __a Book Shoppe____________________, because damn it, it should be mine.I sometimes buy __Scrapbooking__________ magazine, because I lust after _great lay-out ideas______.If you came over to my house to play and broke my __Magenta____ crayon, I'd be a little bit mad at you forever.The colour __orange________ should only be used in fungal remedy packaging or if human waste were to be redesigned.The colour __Sage ___ makes my heart feel like it is full of happy kittens frolicking in a sunny, grassy meadow.___plastic_____ makes me break out in gooberous pustules (or else I just don't like it, but I'm too nice to say it.)I might get sick or die if I touch or ingest __polyester_____, or look at __main-stream parenting magazines___.___gives me the heebie jeebies and I might need to seek therapy if I even think about it further.I love the feel of ____silk______ so much I have a primitive urge to stick some down my pants.No one should have to watch me eat __Key-Lime Pie____, because really If I were eating some in private, I'd be quite a pig about it.I would rather chew tinfoil and shave my head with a cheese grater than eat _Lima Beans__.I DO/DON’T follow recipes because ___I love to bake and experiment with new recipes____.For Marla, "White Shoulders" perfume will always smell like her laid-out dead grandmother. I feel that way about __all perfumes_____.If I could, I'd perfume my own farts and those of my loved ones with the scent of ___Sandlewood_______.I have TOO MANY/TOO MUCH OF ____Things to do_____, and not enough __time in the day to do them [how do you wrap the gift of time?]_____.Gadgets are for __the junk drawer___.When people have kind, sweet and nice things about me, they're usually talking about _my children_____.I can't be upset if people dis me about __always doing to much for everyone else___, because it's true.If I could have any talent in the world, I'd choose __a beautiful voice_______ and use it to _sing love songs and lullabye's______.You are given an hour and twenty dollars to spend in one of these places, childfree. Choose one, or write your own:A Book store because I just love to read and listen to music and I could get lost in a book store for hours and hours.And here's the last chance to make sure that you're not going to get a "Jelly of the Month" club membership when you're expecting your bonus for a swimming pool:It is important to me that the items chosen for me __Makes the giver feel happy about giving it......because it is truly about the friendship and not the gift.........______.(Examples: respect my Wal-Mart boycott, are vegan, aren't made by child or sweatshop labour, can be stuffed down my pants)AndIf I could suggest that you read only one post from my archives, this would be it: _http://www.ramblingmommythoughts.blogspot.com_____AndIf I were to name the Holiday of my choice for this exchange, it would be: __Winter Solstice_____________ (Please feel free to make one up - but this is your chance to say "Um, I'm Jewish but that doesn't mean give me dreidels!" or "More Santa decorations please - I only have thirty-seven now." or "Winter and gifts yes; religious denominations, no - if only all cards could be like those politically correct corporate holiday wishes!" if you want to.)Let me say that I'm looking forward to this chance to spoil someone as I'd like to be spoiled myself. For so many years. I've put lots of thought and time into gifts for friends and family, and have enjoyed the process more than anything. Sometimes it's a bit lost on the giftee, but that doesn't daunt me. I have never ever just handed something over without having considered how an item would be received. Years and years working in retail taught me how emotionally loaded gift exchanges can be - and yet I still love the thrill of finding something that might be perfect and I often feel disappointed when I get short shrift in return. When someone really finds the right present for me, I'll inwardly sqeal with glee (and outwardly sometimes too) becasue they've shown me that they've glimpsed my soul. And it's not hard - sometimes that's as simple as a gift of a bottle of bourbon.Presents can be a great way to learn about how someone views you. I doubt anyone who reads my blog thinks I'd like a sponge painted teacup with a goose in a bonnet on it - but one of you might figure out that a 1954 copy of Life magazine with instructions on how to dance the Cha-lypso or vintage chenille Christmas ornaments would be great. Or, one of you might not know that the perfect Pocky flavour exists for you and I'm the one to find it. After reading my own answers to this questionnaire, you will know me better than most of my family members currently do.And so, you crazy participants - go out there and spoil your fellow blogger.Because even though her family and friends love her and will be thinking about her, NOBODY will be doing it in quite the same way you will, and that's thrilling. How fun - the giving will be as fun as the getting!
*********This was fun!!!
Please see my Mommy blog [] for other ideas.


Whole Momma Gifty Thingy......

My 101 things about me is a good way to get a glimpse into the Rambling Mommy......

I have more than I could ever imagine, and want for nothing [except the things that I do need would have to be fullfilled by Ty Pennington of Extreme Home little leaks in the roof, pipes that leak]

I love life and celebrate family and friends everyday.

I love to read,,,read,,,,read. I am very eclectic in my reading. Everything interests me [well almost everything, I don't get into sci-fi, very often]

I am an avid gardner and love annuals, perinnials and herbs. [That is why my youngest daughter is named Emma Sage]

I love whimsy, and things that are given to me from the heart stay with me forever....

I love pigs,,,,,,,not pink, plastic, korny pigs.....but classic, whimsical pigs. [Does this make sense? I'll post a picture to show you what I mean]

I love magic and believe in the power of prayer......that our souls are eternal and that angels are amongst us.

I have a fairy garden for the children and adore Cicely Mary Barker's Flower Fairies poems and drawings.

I love photography and art and I love to make things....I'm always making things.....crafts, pictures, baking, gardens.....I always have to be doing something.

The most important facet of my life is being a Mother......this is an area that I take great pride and joy....and cherish everything to do with Mothering.

I don't drink often, but if I did, I would have either a Margarita or a great wine.

I love music [everything but rap to tell you the truth] and movies have to be either romantic or comedic and if they are both the better. I have not even watched Titanic because I would cry too deeply and hard at the loss of life that is shown and so I just can't bring myself to watch it.

While my husband travels the world....I'm truly a home-body.

My favorite 'me' time is a hot, bubbly, relaxing bath.

and that is about all I can think of.

Peace, TM

Saturday, December 03, 2005


Originally uploaded by annikaleigh.
Portrait of my little man. I took this today when we were just sitting on the couch talking and I realized that the light from the window cast a nice contast on Otto.....

Friday, November 04, 2005

This is a painting of my father done by his good friend and amazing artist, Paul Matthews. I have loved this painting since Paul painted it because he truly captured the essense of my Dad.....if you notice there is a cigarette in his left hand and his hands are exactly in the motion of my father in conversation. I look at this painting and feel like I'm sitting with my Dad we have done so many, many times throughout my life [Dad, I miss our 2 a.m. in the morning, me coming home from a night out with friends, chats!] Posted by Picasa

Well,,,this Rambling Mommy has been running ragged just keeping up with life....and living it to its fullest and celebrating each wonderful day. This picture is of my Great-grandma and Grandpa Hagood. I took this at my parents house on Halloween and I have been thinking about the two of them I will sit down tonight and write about my memories of the times I got to spend with these two beautiful souls. My Great-grandpa was part Cherokee Indian and the two of them were born and raised in the Appalachian Mountains of Tennessee........a part of my heritage that I find fascinating. Much of my spirituality was formed by spending time gardening and visiting with Grandma and Grandpa and Uncle Paul.Posted by Picasa

Saturday, October 08, 2005

101 things about me

101 things about me….

  1. I am in my early 40s and I'm still trying to figure out how that can be...

  2. If asked, I still think I'm about 28

  3. But that is funny, because if you had asked me at 21 my age, I would have thought, about 28

  4. I am the oldest of four children

  5. My dear brother, who was 12 months younger than me, died a week after my fourth child was born ~ I'm still trying to come to terms with his death

  6. Being a Mother has to be the greatest experience and calling of my life

  7. I married my best friend and soul mate.

  8. We are a part, more than we are together, that makes our relationship good as Im a very independent person and so is he.

  9. I love pizza, I could eat pizza everyday of my life [with different toppings of coarse as to keep variety in my life]

  10. I adore seafood and could eat fresh fish and shellfish daily

  11. I love good, whole food

  12. I love to create things

  13. My favorite mediums are photography and pencil drawing

  14. Someday I hope to be able to create a work of art everyday

  15. I love to sew, but haven't in a while because my sewing machine is broken

  16. No money for a new sewing machine because I'm saving for a good digital SLR camera, I like photography more than sewing

  17. I like to knit and crochet, and pray I have many days of life when I'm older to just sit and knit and crochet and listen to music, my Nana from Sweden taught me needle work

  18. I love music,,,all kinds, don't have a favorite, but I dislike rap.

  19. My wedding song was a Reggae song by Bob Marley

  20. I used to skydive, 268 times to be exact

  21. My parachute was the colors of the rainbow

  22. I used to rock climb and rappel..........I would prefer to climb first and rappel down, but most of my climbing was the other way around

  23. I love the rain,,,,I love to watch it, hear it and I love the smell of the air when it is raining

  24. I am………

  25. The above statement refers to my spiritual beliefs…..I am, I believe that everything is possible, that all religious and spiritual beliefs are valid and to that extent, I am part of the whole.

  26. I was raised Roman Catholic, but today am a member of four local churches and visit many more..........I love to attend churches and temples and see how others worship, although I can't define myself as any one religion.

  27. My favorite place to pray and meditate is outside, in the gardens with my hands digging in the dirt, or in the early morning as the sun is beginning to dawn and the world is slowly waking up..........those are the times when I feel most connected to God.

  28. I am Irish

  29. I am Swedish

  30. I am Cherokee Indian

  31. I am human

  32. I live in the country, in a valley called 'German Valley'.......and my favorite view is looking up the valley towards 'Schooly Mountain'

  33. My home is my most comfortable place to be.........I like being home more than any place else in the world

  34. I love to garden and grow things

  35. I have over 23 verities of lavender growing and hope to continue to add to my collection

  36. I love to grow herbs and perennial plants

  37. I am not the best vegetable gardener, so mostly buy from the local farmers

  38. I make a wicked apple pie

  39. I am a good cook, and always try to improve

  40. I lived in New York City for three years and absolutely love the city

  41. I visit on occasion and it always brings back the New Yorker in me

  42. I was a stockbroker for 9 years

  43. I was a media relations specialist for 4 years

  44. I worked in a high pace, cut-throat environment

  45. I don’t want to work like that ever again

  46. Right now I am a professional Mommy [I care for two other children besides my own four]

  47. I had four distinctly different births

  48. My first was overly medicated and controlled by the doctors without any due respect towards me ~ I was treated like a piece of meat

  49. My second was absolutely perfect, beautiful and peaceful with a midwife

  50. My third was my most difficult ~ as my son was breech and they turned him, first at 37 weeks and then again at 40 weeks and induced me........he was born direct OP and a lot of work to deliver

  51. My last was my most ideal birth because she was born at home and I delivered her, but not as perfect as my second because this was not a planned homebirth and it happened so fast

  52. I have nursed for a total time of 12 years and 8 months

  53. You can just call me Bessie the cow! Lol!

  54. I love water

  55. I love taking hot, long baths with lavender in it [that is why I grow lavender]

  56. I have had some powerful experiences in my life that first appeared to me in my dreams

  57. I don't know what that means other than it can be quite freaky

  58. I could get lost in a bookstore for hours and hours looking and reading,,,,,,

  59. I love to read, when I was younger I would walk to the local library a few times a week and check out books to read and my house today is filled with books, and I collect children's books.

  60. My most favorite place to read was sitting on a rock over-looking the waterfall near our house

  61. My friends and I used to jump off of this same waterfall

  62. Today, I would have a nervous breakdown if I knew my own children would be jumping off this same waterfall ~~~funny how things change

  63. My mother is from Ireland so I am first generation American on her side

  64. My husbands father is from Germany so he is first generation American on his side

  65. My dh travels the world over, I like to stay within 10 miles of home

  66. I love to play backgammon and card games

  67. I don't drink often, but if I do, I love Margarita's or a very good red wine [my hubby brings me wine home from all over the world]

  68. I have never smoked, I hate cigarettes

  69. I married a non-smoker, who now smokes? Still trying to figure that one out

  70. I think that Amsterdam has the right idea about legalizing cannabis

  71. I love rollercoaster's, and I am glad all four of my children do too, cause we have so much fun visiting amusement parks and going on all the rollercoasters

  72. My one vice is coffee, I drink two cups a day [sometimes more]

  73. But I have to get it at the coffee shop, as I just can't make a good cup at home

  74. I think that it might be not just the coffee but the routine of going to the coffee shop that I really enjoy

  75. I can't go into a local store without having to stop and chat and say hello to everyone I know,,,,this makes for long shopping trips

  76. I hate nail polish and fake nails

  77. I rarely wear make-up

  78. My hair has always been long [past my waist] for most of my life

  79. Right now it is long and I always wear it in a bunn

  80. I'm thinking I need a change

  81. I don't dye my hair, so it has a lot of gray in it

  82. It is exciting to me to watch my children grow and learn and become their own unique selves

  83. Sometimes it is scary to watch this process, especially since Katrina and Greta are teenagers now

  84. I would love to be a grandmother and great-grandmother someday

  85. The continuum of life fascinates me

  86. I married my first true loves ~ best friend,,,,they are still best friends today

  87. I love movies that are either funny or about relationships and love

  88. I hate action movies and scary movies, can't/won't watch them

  89. I love the discovery channel and the history channel

  90. I faux finish and paint murals

  91. I love to go to the theatre and at one point in my life, I had seen every play on and off Broadway

  92. I used to eat at Windows on the World once a week

  93. I was supposed to be at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, but because of my daughter Emma Sage being born with Down syndrome I chose to leave my job that would have brought me to the WTC that fateful day

  94. I believe there is a reason for everything

  95. I have never gotten a ticket while driving [knocking on wood right now]

  96. I love animals and have 3 dogs and 3 cats and 3 goats

  97. I don't know why I have 3 goats and they are living up the road at my neighbors farm right now

  98. I hate to shop, but love to go to Home Depot and Lowes and look around

  99. I Can't figure out why my daughters love to shop so much when I despise it.

  100. I collect pigs, antique figurines and paintings

  101. I have every letter and card ever sent to me in my life in a wooden box in the basement ~~~~sometimes I bring it upstairs and read though the different facets of my life that were sent to me by family, friends and lovers ~~~ I cherish the written word and it is such a treat to reminisce over cards, letters and poems

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Militant Cult Member

I’m a militant cult member.

Yes, you heard me right.

I’m a militant cult member................sounds funny doesn't it.

Me, mild mannered, gentle soul, completely open-minded, Zen and Tao student, world religion researcher, Mothering, mother of four ~~~~ a militant cult member.

But it is true..................or it must be true because my Mothering style has been written in a book and my actions have labeled me a militant.

I'll bet you didn't even know there was such a thing. According to Peggy Robin in her book Bottlefeeding Without Guilt (now renamed When Breastfeeding is Not an Option) there is! If you're not sure about the status of your membership, consider these questions:

Do you nurse your babies past one year of age? [Yes]

Do you share your bed with your nursing baby? [Yes}

Do you believe that mothers and fathers have different roles to play in raising children? [Yes]

Do you believe that God provided women with breasts in order to feed their babies? [Yes, I believe breasts are for nursing first and foremost,,,what ever anyone else wants to with them other than that is fine by me]

Do you associate with other women who breastfeed their children or even--- gasp!---attend La Leche League meetings? [Yes, a former LLL leader here]

Do you sign your email messages with "Billy's mommy" or cutesy nicknames? [Yes,,,,usually sign it, Proud Momma to four amazing children]

This is an obvious sign that you are assuming a childlike, unquestioning, unintellectual role within the cult. [LOL!!!]

Do you follow the AAP guidelines of breastfeeding a baby exclusively for six months before introducing supplements or solids? (Presumably the AAP is part of the cult.) [Yes, and for those outside the U.S. the AAP is the American Academy of Pediatrics]

Do you believe that there are not only physical differences between men and women, but psychological and emotional differences as well? [Yes,,,and it is a delightful thing!]

Do you believe that motherhood is a noble calling and that mothers and babies belong together? Do you---gasp!---think that babies are better off if their mothers are home with them rather than pursuing careers? [Yes, I do]

Do you make your baby's food from wholesome, nourishing ingredients and avoid processed foods or additives? [Yes, I did,,,,and carry it over into their childhood/teen years]

Do you avoid pacifiers and artificial nipples? [Yes, but I have one thumb sucker]

"If you answered in the affirmative to any of these, let me warn you that Peggy Robin views these as characteristics of the militant cult lifestyle!"

Friday, September 30, 2005

Miss Rori,,,,,what a ray of sunshine you are! Posted by Picasa

Bittersweet........I just love this picture,
a beautiful and pure Mothering moment,
but the sad part of this picture is that it
was taken on the day that my sister's milk
was coming in and sadly she had no
baby in her arms to nurse. To me
this picture evokes the joy of Motherhood. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Wake me Up.........

"Wake Me Up When September Ends"

My sister has been singing this song.......after the events of the last week. I have joined in the chorus, because this September has seemed to be one that has lost all of its innocence.

Tonight I took Otto to say good-bye to his dear friends mother. Maureen Infusino passed away on Monday, September 26, 2005, leaving her husband Wayne and precious son Daniel behind.

We stood in line at the funeral home, looking at the collages of pictures of Maureens life. How sad it was, but also how know that these images of her life, were the times she cherished.....her wedding day, the picture of her fully pregnant at her baby shower, her hand cradling her full womb of her precious boy to be.....of Daniel and his Mommy dressed in a Santa's suit in his Mommy's arms infront of the Christmas, pieces of her life....captured to remember the joy,,,,to remember the precious moments of her life!

Otto was just a brave young man.....shaking Mr. Infusino's hand and telling him how sorry he was.

We then went to Daniels house and brought a big basket of muffins that Otto helped me bake all afternoon.

We talked, Otto and I........talking about the cycle of life.......that both birth and death are part of our journey,,,but what is truly important is the living inbetween.....of living your life to the fullest. Of being a friend.....Of reaching out and helping others.......Of being!

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Childhood memories

Life has been in full swing around here.

I've been thinking about my own childhood memories, recalling moments that were important to me, or defining moments in my life, because each one of my children have been experiencing those kinds of moments in their lives.

It brings a big smile to my face as they excitedly share a special moment with me......I knowing that 10, 20, 30 years down the road, these moments will come back to them from time to time and they will be their special childhood memories.

Lets see, a list of firsts:

Katrina got her first official job!!! She is working at Melicks Orchard on the weekends. On the same day that she started her first official job, she got her drivers permit and took her first driving lesson...........for three hours my daughter was behind the wheel of a car, driving through Warren, Morris and Hunterdon County [want to talk about the excited conversations she shared that evening].

Sigh,,,,,,it was so wonderful watching her tell us all about her big day.

Greta started high school!! She also made JV Field Hockey as a freshman. She is taking a very difficult coarse load and is just bubbling from the great adventure of life that she is traveling.

Otto is in Mrs. Jordan's 4th grade class and is so very happy. He attended a Boy Scout camp this summer [Camp SouthHaven] upstate New York with his cousin Harry and Uncle Jeff. What an incredible experience he had. He and Harry earned some badges and he got his 'whittling' card [a big achievement in Otto's eyes....ours too!!!]

Emma Sage is just blossoming into an amazing little girl. She is talking up a storm, is fully aware and involved with everyone and everything around her. She has modeled again for Toys R Us ~ two times in the last two weeks [this girl is making big bucks!]. I think Emma Sages favorite memory of the summer of 2005 would be her first visit to Sesame Place where she got to dance and sing with Elmo!!!

Rick is traveling lots. Leaves today for Italy and I'm busy being a Momma, man life is good!

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Oh my goodness, I can see!

I can't believe it, but I can see clearly now!

I just got contacts.......but this time the right contacts. Fifteen years ago I tried contacts, but with sensitive eyes and just not the right contacts for an astigmatism, I was turned off of contacts.

Glasses are not my thing. I have tried. They fall down and to tell you the truth, the results were not that great. [[I have since to find out that the distance between my eye and the glass lense still leaves distortion.

So right now I'm sitting here seeing things clearly for the first time,,,,and man does it feel great.

[Its weird though, I only have one contact. My right eye is 20/ all these years that poor eye was working real hard. My left eye, uncorrected is 20/400....and this evening with the contact in it was 20/ what a difference!]

I'm wondering why I took so long to take care of myself.

So here is looking at you kids! Mommy loves you all so very much [and now I can really see what you look like! lol...only kidding!]

Her First Goal.....

Well, actually, not her first goal, but her 1st offical goal in high school!

Yes, Miss Greta scored a goal [she had an assist in the last scrimmage] and last night playing at Pingry she had her First Offical High School Field Hockey Goal!

Now, this is not an amazing feat for a little speed daemon who has been playing field hockey since second grade,,,,,as she was the highest goal scorer on her middle school team, but still it marks the beginning of a new chapter in her life.

We are so proud of you Greta and we know that the goalies on oppossing teams are going to fear the thought of coming up against Voorhees High School Field Hockey team over the next four years!

Go Vikings!!!

Sunday, September 04, 2005

On being a Momma......

Being a Momma is truly an amazing experience. So much so, that many, many books, movies and songs have been created because of the experience.

For me the journey of Motherhood has been truly an amazing experience that grows and changes daily. How could my heart love more than it loved yesterday? But it does.

Through my children I have learned so many things, been exposed to so many new experiences, and it continues....what an incredible continium.

One facet that I adore is watching my children find their way in this world. Developing their own likes and dislikes.

With Katrina, the journey at this point is so refreshing for the she is exploring and developing her own sense in what kind of music she likes [thank goodness she moved passed that 6th grade, follow the leader, OH NO, its RAP music phase].

A group that Katrina turned her Momma on to is called 311.

I highly recommend their album "Don't Tread On Me"


I guess I have been not rambling too often lately. Actually I have, I just haven't had time to write them in my blog.

Hurrican Katrina has left me in a daze. I know, sounds so silly and lame, considering I'm safe and sound in my little hamlet of Califon, NJ......but still, I have been spending hours looking at photographs of the hurricane, its path, its destruction and the countless stories being sent around the world via photographs.

When I was a little girl, one of my most favorite things to do [besides reading] was looking at National Geographic because I just adore looking at of real life,,,real weather, real animals, real people, real places [as opposed to the photographs generated on Madison Avenue].

So to my delight about a year ago I found a website called, Flickr, and have been spending my precious spare time looking at the world through many photographers eyes.

Here is a picture that I found to be so powerful from the Wrath of Katrina.

It is titled: Pass Christian House Before/After

Just amazing the force of wind and rain........and how truly vulernable life and property is to these forces of nature.

Friday, July 08, 2005

A Well Behaved Dog?!?

I think as a mother the one thing that you hope for, the one thing that you work so hard in instilling in your children is manners. You know, the Miss Manners, level of manners that always made Donna Reed smile so lovingly at her children when they displayed the optimal level of etiquette.

I always get compliments on my children's behavior…..have been for years and it always makes me smile to know that other people enjoy having my children around them. My kids are always being invited out and on trips and after these outings I always get calls asking me "How do you get them to be so polite and well-behaved?"

But today I got a phone call,,,,,,,from a woman I have known for a long time, calling me to tell me how wonderful my oldest daughter was at her beach house [Katrina had been invited to the shore with a friend and her family to stay at P’s house]. What a surprise to me for P to call me and tell me that she loved having Katrina and that she was just so polite, the only child who said please, thank you, may I be excused, and the only child to come in to see her at the end of the visit and give her a hug and a big thank you for having her stay with them…….and then the analogy that almost made me choke on my diet coke [with lime] "She was like a well trained dog!"

I almost died…..but it got me thinking…..have I drilled manners into my children to the point that they are like a show dog…knowing how to behave and perform?

I have, myself used the analogy of raising children and training dogs before… saying that they need loving guidance and gentle direction in a consistent manner to develop habits that are second nature to them.

So now I am thinking……How do I get my three Jack Russell Terriers to behave as well as my kids?

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

The Rambling Mommy and her littest angel Posted by Hello

Pulling Your Hair Out....

I know where the term, 'Pulling Your Hair Out' came from. It came from a mother. It might have first be spoken, when your sweet little newborn accidently catches its precious wrinkly fingers in your long hair.....or it might have been coined when your spunky toddler purposefully pulls at your hair [even though you have it piled up on top of your head to avoid accidental pulls 'see you have learned this trick by now] while they are sitting purched on your back in a backpack while you try to get the dinner dishes done.....or it might have been first spoken when you are trying to get four kids, to four different activities, all within a 15 minute time frame from each other.

But as I think back to the origins of the term 'Pulling Your Hair Out' I realize that no matter when or where the words were first spoken, they are words that you cherish, because you know someday, someday too soon, there won't be any little fingers or too many activities to muss your hair.