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Top 10: Things to do at 5:30 am

5 Feb

Anyone ever notice I’m a list-maker? There are a lot of reasons I love lists, which I plan on sharing with you soon. But today, because I’m turning over a new leaf, I’ll share with you this: the first installment in my new and recurring “Top 10 Lists”.

Are you shocked by the title of this post? I am too. And so is my husband. And yes, that number refers to the time I set my alarm for this morning. Yes, it was on purpose. Yes, it was dark. And yes, I was productive or something in that quiet, coffee-filled hour before the kiddos woke up. Is productive a relative term? You decide, in today’s installment of:

Top 10 things to do at 5:30 am.

1) Clank around the french press/coffee mugs/refrigerator, wake up the dog, and then blindly ignore his pleas to be let outside. Your excuse will later be that it was dark and you didn’t see him there, but as you’re cleaning pee stains off of the chic and over-rated “unfinished” wood floor, some part of you will be making a mental note to be a better pet parent tomorrow.

2) Clank around the laptop/desk drawers/pencil holder, wake up the 4 year old, and then pretend like you don’t know he’s peeing all over the toilet seat in your bathroom. Also pretend like you don’t know he probably did it because he thinks it will be funny for you to sit in it later. Continue reading

Sneak peek Sunday

15 Apr

Set scene: Sunday night, me propped up on comfy pillows in bed – my favorite office – pecking away at a work related e-mail while hubby folds clothes. Then, suddenly and without warning, I find myself aaaaa-lone, abandoned in favor of the big TV in the living room. So, with my husband watching a man flick and me needing human contact, I reach out to you, great void (can’t help the You’ve Got Mail reference…) in the hope of procrastinating work just a few hours longer. Which reminds me of this, a great line that I found on Pinterest recently that basically describes my life:

I love this maybe because the one thing I love more than my work is to procrastinate by doing other work! Confusing? See, I’ve got KidsArt, which is my official ‘work’, and when I’m bored of that I can paint or sculpt or write, all of which can also be categorized as ‘work’ – painting and sculpting falling into the paying kind of ‘work’ and writing falling into the keeps me from going crazy kind of ‘work’.

Until – here comes the sneak peek! – I came up with the most perfect super-exciting-but-why-do-I-always-create-more-work-for-myself idea ever. Welcome into the world, KidsArtKorner.com, the blog dedicated to all things art. I am officially launching the site tomorrow, but YOU, dear reader – if you check your e-mail on Sunday nights – are in the know a good 12 hours ahead of schedule. If you find any horrific spelling mistakes or unprofessional slips of tongue please let me know. It’s characteristic of this here site, but *hopefully* not so for the other. Read it over, let me know what you think, and please oh please offer suggestions if you have them. I do hope you like it, and if so then go ahead and subscribe – I promise to make it worth your while 🙂

To wrap it up, what I think this really means is that now I have TWO wonderful ways to avoid the things I’d rather not do. Brilliant, if I do say so myself!

Questions from a no-name blogger

30 Mar

So lately I’ve been getting a lot of heat from y’all about monetizing this here blog. At first I said no, then I thought about it, and now my head kinda hurts. Here are my questions, and until I get some answers I’m on blog-research strike.

1) Do my family and friends *really* count as subscribers? They’ll love anything I write or I’d disown them. I can’t see how that’s fair.

2) Is there such thing as a list blogger, and can I become one? If so, how many numbers are necessary to form a proper list? I’m thinking 4 to be safe (2 being merely a couple and 3 being only a few), but I’m open for discussion.

3) I like to interact with *real* people. Is that a problem?

4) Is blogging while driving safe practice? One more ticket and I lose my license.

5) I can only write when a child is home sick from school or I’m procrastinating the type of work that pays or keeps me married. Again, is that a problem?

6) Is cussing OK? This is not a poll, and if you don’t like it you can kiss my ass. This is called creative license. It’s just sometimes I wonder…

7) I like to check e-mail. And that tab is right next to WordPress on my toolbar. This is distracting. And also not a question.

8) I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again – I don’t know how to type. And yes, I was an English major. It’s not only embarrassing, it’s also time consuming.

9) What if I run out of ideas? Will people keep reading if all I have left are pictures of what I ate for breakfast?

And with that, I’m out of ideas. Hit me back with answers, or any questions that I may have forgotten. Just nothing absolute or stressful, please. I’ve got those bases covered all on my lonesome over here. Cheers!

She emerges!

27 Mar

I’m back, and whether or not you’re wondering it’s time to learn where the heck I’ve been, and what I plan to do about it. To get through it faster I’m going for list form. There is no reason or logic here. Get used to it, I plan on utilizing more of these tactics from now on.

1) Yes, my last post was January 1st – almost 3 full months ago. In these last 3 months I’ve been busy opening a second business. It’s a ceramics studio and totally kicks ass. I’m exhausted and exhilarated all in the same breath. Check me out on Facebook or visit my KidsArt website to see the proof.

2) I am only writing now because one of my sons is home sick for the 2nd day, and I’m tired of cleaning the house and procrastinating about all the *other* undone schtick around here. This is more fun than being a maid.

3) Other not completely productive things I have done today include avoiding the dishes and laundry room, drinking extravagant amounts of tea, eating snack, researching my next tattoo, birthday shopping, window shopping, scanning but not returning emails, eating snack, reading Coastal Living, browsing Pinterest, and thinking about painting. I also boiled water for my son’s tortellini. File that one under productive.

4) Now for some solutions. To keep from falling into another 3 month lapse I am vowing to learn to type (the proper way), and to not care so much about grammatical errors (a near impossibility for the English major in me, but I’m giving it a shot). I’m enacting a “one proofread per post” policy. Or maybe I’ll just tear right through one of these days WITHOUT a proofread, huh?! Whatcha’ think about that? Okay, no. I’m already sweating. Quick, must proofread to abate fluttering heartbeat.

5) There is one more thing I wasn’t going to say and now I am. On March 5th my dear father in law passed away, and through the incredible outpouring of friendship we’ve made it through so far. We miss him, and this is hard, but we’re getting back to it. Thank-you for all of the flowers, the house smells great and I’m smiling over them every day.

A quick recap. You’ve learned that aside from being busy I also made it through college as an English major without learning to type, I have an irrational fear of the “send” button (think about it, you probably do too), and my husband does the dishes. And the laundry. Happy I got that all off my chest.

Signing off, Boom shakalaka boom boom, people. Talk soon.

Best sick day ever

15 Apr

Let me preface this by saying that contrary to the tenor of lines one and two, this story turns out to be much more uplifting, and dare I say inspiring, than one might think. So read on, friend. You’ll see what I mean.

Big brother is sick again. Which means that mommy, too, is housebound. Today was day three, and I’d had about enough of my laptop screen, lovely as it is, so I decided for the sake of our communal sanity to venture out. I chose Veteran’s Park by the Redondo Pier since on Thursdays the Farmer’s Market comes to town (hubby and I watched Food Inc. last night and have a healthy fire under our butts. Hooray for kale!).

The medicated kiddo and I arrived at the park precisely at 9 am, fed the meter, and began our 2.2 mile stroller walk to the Hermosa Beach pier. We chatted along the way, stopped at the local Sea Lab to check out some sharks, dipped our bare feet in the sand, fed peanuts to some dirty pigeons, then turned around and played Eye Spy the whole way back.

Bliss, I tell you, absolute bliss. Okay, in truth it was probably more like bliss spiked with shards of guilt for the work I had left lying on my bed at home. Or more accurately moments of bliss, dominated mostly by the type of all encompassing guilt usually reserved for convicts and Catholics. Because who, I asked myself repeatedly, WHO besides me has the pleasure or right to set aside the ‘ol J-O-B in favor of a sunny stroll on a Thursday? When did it become fair for me to spend an entire three hour morning flouncing down the strand in a tank top and sunglasses while everyone else sits benched behind their desks? Why am I suddenly allowing myself this privilege that, until now, was reserved for weekends or vacation?

The answer to all of these questions is simply because. Because I said so (first and last time I’ll ever say that). Because I need it. Because I love my boys. Because I know they’re growing up so quickly and I refuse to miss it. Because the sun and the beach and the breeze are so glorious. Because I want so very badly to be present and enjoy the tiny in between moments where we really spend most of our lives.

Oh, and it also helped that on the walk back to the park I ran into a sweet former client of mine joyfully riding her beach cruiser through the marina with a pack of fellow mamas on the loose. They were headed to lunch, she explained, because summer is near so they’re packing in as much solo fun as they can before the kids get out of school. I love this mom, and the permission that she gave me today to enjoy – my – life. Today. Because that’s all any of us really has.

When little dude, the stroller, and I wheeled our way back into the parking lot, it was with sweaty pits, sunburned shoulders, three bags of farm fresh produce, and happy happy hearts. We dropped our treasures in the trunk, grabbed the picnic bag, and sat on the grass. Then played on the structure. And hugged a lot.

I drove home feeling a whole lot less guilty about this midweek rendezvous with my son than I had just three hours before. And tonight as I comb through the day’s memories I’m making a promise to wake up each morning with the same free spirit that I’ll be going to sleep with tonight. Call me a gypsy. I think I was one in a past life. Call me a flower child. My parents were. Call me mama. That one’s my favorite. I hope my kiddos remember me as all three.