oh hi kid, i didn't see you there

A few days before Alice was born, I took Clark to the mall to do that thing that pregnant moms do where they try to walk the baby out. I also wanted to buy something new, anything new, that wasn't "maternity".

I got a blue shirt. I remember trying it on, amazed at the way it fit me just right. I felt much prettier and snappier inside of it and less like a worn-out baby shell.  I loved it so much that I wore it right out of the mall that day, like a little girl in party shoes.  I loved it so much that I wore it all day the next day and fell asleep watching the Olympics in it that night.  Early the next morning, I woke up in labor in it.  I wore it to the hospital. They tried to give me a gown, but I told them no. I was comfortable in my blue shirt. I wanted to wear my blue shirt. I was wearing my blue shirt when Alice was born.

This pregnancy? Blue Shirt does not cover my stomach. I weigh a good 5-10 pounds less than I did at this stage with Alice, yet Blue Shirt is a no-go. The belly? It is big.



you capture: play

Play is my favorite.   We do it up right.


This is the part where I would normally make a bunch of lame excuses for not blogging or twittering or being social in any way (unless you count acting crazy and buying birth supplies and cleaning my house and falling asleep early every night social?) all week, but instead I am going to post a (holycowemphasisoncow) 37 week belly picture later that will explain it all. Check back for the goods.

And as always you can see more You Capture photos over at the lovely lady Beth's place, I Should Be Folding Laundry.

Love to you all!


you capture: black and white

I'm posting this really late, I know.  But I don't care.  I'm posting it anyway.

Two of my favorite girls.


My grandma and my baby.

My grandma's name is Sue and I love her to pieces.

If this new baby boy had been a baby girl, we would have named her Susannah. 

Visit I Should Be Folding Laundry for more black-and-white shots.

Xs and Os to you all.


baby in the corner

Gosh are you guys wonderful or what?

I put off talking about our plans for a homebirth for 35 weeks to avoid negativity, and look what I could have been soaking up!  Thank you all very very very much.  Very much much much.

And your name suggestions were spot-on.  In fact I think someone suggested the name we are probably going to use, and you also suggested most of the other names on our list.   I feel loved and known.  Isn't that a good feeling?

It's kind of funny, preparing for the third baby.  The third baby in three and a half years.  Funny and crazy.  It is flying by.
Physically, I feel full-term 40 weeks pregnant right now.
Mentally?  I am stuck somewhere around 28 weeks.
In reality?  I am 36 weeks.

I usually put a lot of energy into making the nursery, and it mentally prepares me for the inevitability that another person will be living in our house.  I am not saying that the nursery is as important as the Pottern Barn Kids catalog makes it look.  It really really is not important and is totally just a psychological thing.  Both of our kids have ended up sleeping in our bed for a long time and their rooms just got dusty for awhile and I could have worked on them later, but I preferred to get all insane and bossy and fixated because it just plain felt good.  MAKING the room is therapeutic for a pregnant woman, you know?  It is therapeutic for this pregnant woman.

This was Clark's nursery:

We moved out of that house when Clark was six months old and he never ever used the room.

This was Alice's nursery:




This is still Alice's room, though it has evolved as she has gotten older:


Our sweet new baby?  Our precious third child, second son, probable final addition to our family?

He gets this:


Older brother and straw hat included. 
We have a three bedroom house
This crib is in the corner of our bedroom.


As certain as I am that he will never ever know or care that he did not have a nursery (100% certain) it is messing with my head that I can't pour my energy into making a room for him.

I want to destroy and create something.  I want to decorate.  I want to collect more weird kid stuff from the thrift store and project a personality onto the tiny human I am growing and do not yet know.

At some point this baby will move in with Clark and I can go wild rearranging and painting and decorating and all of that stuff I cannot do right now.  I am tucking that future experience into my back pocket and pretending that Clark does not have extremely strong opinions about everything and will want to be at the very least involved in the project, if not spearheading it. 

For now I have to pretend.
I am too crazy to let this one get away.
One day, I am gonna make that Shared Boy Room and I am gonna make it up right.
Just not today.

(Sidenote:  That mobile was mine when I was a baby.  My mom just happened to find the pieces when I was over there hanging out one day.  It made us both really excited and happy that this little boy gets something special that has not had its specialness all used up on the other kids.  This one is just for me and you New Little Baby Boy.)


whispering about shouting

As I waited for Clark (who did not yet have a name) I found myself struggling to prepare for such a wild unknown thing. I knew that no matter how tight my eyes were closed that I couldn't possibly imagine how it would feel to labor, give birth, or hold my own baby.  I supposed that it would be like getting drunk or entering zero gravity or something physiologically magical like that.  I supposed correctly.  Magical.

As I waited for Alice (who had had the name Alice since before she was conceived) I challenged and prepared myself to do what I had not done during my first birth -- labor without drugs of any kind.  I had had loads of Pitocin with Clark and also an epidural which caused low blood pressure and I couldn't stand up or feel my legs for two days and at one point Clark's heartrate was crashing from all the drugs, and the physical experience left me feeling like a trainwreck.  A happy trainwreck, but a trainwreck nonetheless.  I knew I didn't want to do the trainwreck part again.  I supposed that natural childbirth was going to feel like jumping from an airplane or running a marathon or something magical like that.  I supposed correctly.  Magical again.

I have spent the last 35 weeks waiting to meet this new baby (who only maybe has a name but we aren't entirely sure -- do you have any good boy name suggestions?) and I am preparing, again, to do something I've never done before.  I am preparing to have my baby at home.  I have researched and read, I've listened to my head and listened to my heart and compared the costs and factored in the distance to the hospital and hired a certified nurse midwife with thousands of births under her belt and rented a tub and made a space in my bedroom where we will be setting it up.  We are doing this thing.  I suppose it's going to be like a peaceful earthquake or a lucid dream or the best Thanksgiving dinner.  We'll see.  In five weeks, we will see.


I've been hesitating to share about my birth plans here, and I'm not totally sure why, but I know that at least part of it is that I do not want negative comments.  So pretty please, keep it positive.  At least to my face.  And if you are an experienced homebirth mom, I would love any advice or tips you have!



silent songs

I rock Alice to sleep every night.

After she falls asleep I stay where I am, holding her, still rocking away, and my brain works very well. The paths in my mind -- from one life event to another mirrored one, from confusion to solution, from worry to peace -- are torched up with light bulbs and fireworks.  The big and little things in life click together. It all very fleetingly makes sense.

While half of my brain is busy with the fireworks and the lightbulbs, the other half sings.
My fingers impulsively tap along and after a little while I find my hands playing whatever song I am humming on an imaginary piano.  I would be really good at playing the piano if I knew how to play the piano.
I would like to buy a piano.


you capture: america




The scene from two (yes, two) fourth of July parades we attended, above. 
Little Miss America's reaction to her daddy's backyard fireworks, below.


As always, please do visit I Should Be Folding Laundry to check out the rest of the shots or to play along!

PS.  I promise I am coming out of my cave and will be posting more this week.  Real posts.  With words.  XOXO


hold still

I have to be clear:  last week's photo was taken after I did my hair and makeup.

I did my hair and makeup because, while innocently perusing a pregnancy book, I came across a section that recommended that you use a tape measure to take weekly measurements of your upper thighs as to ensure you aren't gaining weight not associated with the baby BLAH BLAH BLAH.  Of course I responded to this suggestion like any reasonable third-trimester lady would -- by measuring the size of my thighs not with a tape measure but rather with my eye balls and then crying for awhile.

And then doing my hair.

And makeup.

And taking a cheery photo.

Your comments made me feel like Miss America.  I always wanted to be Miss America.  Love to YOU ALL.


My kids haven't been sleeping, like, at all, the last few weeks.  Daylight Savings and my three-year-old's general hatred for resting have been conspiring against us.  This last week was the worst with Clark finallyfinallyfinally drifting off around midnight each night.  I haven't been doing things like holding still or pausing to think or opening my laptop. The first day of Summer -- the longest day of the year -- felt very much like the longest day of the year.  But the days are getting shorter again and this season will be over in a few blinks and we'll be somewhere entirely different.  For now, I'm doing this hurried stuff and typing these little posts that don't make much sense.  They will someday be a marker in time for me to look back and see where I was.  I was here.  I am here.  I'm just a little scattered.

from clark's camera

photo by Clark, taken with his blue rubbery "Kid-Tough" camera