Wednesday, July 31, 2013



yes, i am so relieved.

yes, i feel like i can breathe again. amazing how after scans -- when good news comes -- i realize that i have really been holding my breath for the last couple of weeks. deep breaths feel so good to take again.

yes, i am exhausted. sleep has not been my friend lately as you can imagine, so i am looking forward to getting some peaceful sleep again.

yes, i am building the list of what i will do in the next three months.

yes, i will share it here soon.

yes, i am still a little in shock that we got good news. not that i didn't believe, not that i didn't have hope, not that i didn't want it more than anything. but, when those words finally come, it takes a little bit of time to feel safe that those words won't get taken away from you. that someone won't realize it was a mistake, and you got the wrong results. the good news was meant for someone else, not for you.

yes, i am thankful for all of the love we have received as moved through this week. it is amazing and overwhelming in the best possible way.

yes, three more months.

yes, it feels like i got a lifetime back. my lifetime back.

yes, it gives me continued hope that i can and i will beat this.

yes, i will.

yes, i can.


Tuesday, July 30, 2013

the results are in...

and they are clear!!!! thank you everyone so much for the prayers, good mojo, and vibes. they worked;) more soon - just taking it in and catching my breath with my family.

anywhere i go, you go - and you were definitely with me today. xoxo

Monday, July 29, 2013

oh contrast, i hate you (and i really mean it)


feeling like hell.

long day.

check-in.paperwork.iv in arm. bloodwork. saline. two bottles of contrast to drink in an hour. scans "breathe in, hold your breath, breathe out." contrast injected into my iv. feeling the warmth move all throughout my body. those damn ceiling tiles. you know the drill.

ellie and barrett were good great support. we chatted it up during the hour that i had to drink the contrast.

after scans when i could eat, ellie had an awesome buffet of macaroons, granola, blueberries, kale chips, and swedish fish. yum.

as usual, felt really sick way before we got home. crashed on couch. woke up for a bit to see and play with malena before she went to bed. rough bedtime with her for a couple of different reasons.

lots of tears tonight.

going to head to bed now and try to get some sleep, although i think the chances of that are slim. but will give it a try.

thanks for all of the good vibes, mojo, and prayers today. i could feel them and carried them with me into the scans. i know that they will be coming with me tomorrow as well when we walk into that room at 4:30 to get the results. hope. hope. hope. good news. good news. good news.

anywhere i go, you go. xo

Sunday, July 28, 2013

the speaking

"and the speaking will get easier and easier. and you will find you have fallen in love with your own vision, which you may never have realized you had. and you will lose some friends and lovers, and realize you don't miss them. and new ones will find you and cherish you...and at last you'll know with surpassing certainty that only one thing is more frightening that speaking your truth. and that is not speaking."
(audre lorde)
and so here we are again.
scan day.
the day i dread second to results day.
you all know the drill, you know how i feel about tomorrow (or today if you are reading this on monday).
so not much to say that you don't already know.
i hate it.
i don't want to do it.
i know i am going to feel like hell tomorrow night.
i am scared shitless for tuesday.
i feel like i could cry through the next two days and never be without tears.
i am so angry and bitter that i have to do this.
i want this to all go away.
i wonder how my three months off went so quickly. oh, now i remember, i filled every second of the them with living my life (smart planning on my part;)). take that melanoma.
so not much to say that you don't already know.
i am surrounded by love.
i have awesome friends and family.
i have a ton of people pulling for me.
i can feel all of the good vibes, mojo, and prayers coming my way.
so not much to say that you don't already know.
anywhere i go, you go.
i wish more than anything that we weren't going where we have to go the next two days.
but i appreciate you coming along for the ride regardless.
here we go. again. dammit. xoxo


Thursday, July 25, 2013

for jennifer

today my friend jennifer goes in for her next round of appointments at seattle cancer care alliance. like we have done many times before, let's send our mojo, prayers, and good thoughts to her and mike today. i am pretty sure that with all of our good energy coming her way, cancer won't even try to the enter the same building she is in.

thanks everyone, i will keep you posted. i know jenn and mike really appreciate your good thoughts too.

anywhere jennifer goes, we go. xoxo

Tuesday, July 23, 2013


this post has been brewing for a long time, but i haven't felt up to writing it. i am not sure that i feel like it tonight either, but honestly, i think that getting it out will make me feel lighter. feeling lighter is a good thing this week. right? right. ok, here we go.

when barrett and i bought our house, we didn't realize that it fell just within the wrong side of a district boundary. we didn't realize that when we had a kid and they were ready to start elementary school, they would have to be on a bus for about two hours a day. two hours on a bus instead of a less than one mile drive to the elementary school that is right by our house. those imaginary lines can have huge implications.

so, as malena has grown, we have gone back and forth. do we move? do we buy a property within the district? do we go for a boundary exemption? how do we remedy this problem that we wish that we never would have got ourselves (unintentionally) into.

it has been nagging at me for the last couple of years, and i wanted a clear plan to be in place when she started school. specifically, i wanted that plan to include her going to school within the district that we wanted - but i wasn't sure which option we would/could choose to make that happen.

after i was originally diagnosed, it nagged at me even more.

since february, it has been like a gong booming loudly in my head on a near constant rotation.

here is why.

if the cards don't play in our favor and a day comes they are on their own without me, there are some important things i would want.

i would want them to be settled.

i would want them to be where can stay and continue to grow.

most importantly, i would want them to be where they have memories with me. the thought of them ever someplace where i have not been with them is heartbreaking (like i think i can literally hear my heart cracking when i think about it) for me. so the thought of moving has weighed heavily on me because i feel like we should do that now if we are going to pick that option (which is obviously complicated and overwhelming).

barrett and i have talked about it. you can put that conversation in the "tough" category. one of those conversations you should be thankful you never have to have if you are lucky enough to be healthy. we finally took the step (after a few deep breaths) to meet with our mortgage guru to talk about options. i am still a little bit in shock that i was not a complete puddle of tears in her office. not one kleenex used. pretty amazing if i do say so myself - and of course i do;)

so no decision has been made. yet. but soon we will decide how we want to go forward. what our plan is going to be.

i try hard to not think about all of this too often. but i do spend time thinking about it. that is just part of my reality. i don't know how any mom wouldn't if she was in my same shoes. you want everyone to be taken care of. always. regardless of the circumstances. this circumstance just happens to be the worst one to have to consider.

so the thoughts come, i give them their time.

then i quietly send them on their way.

send them on to their own home for awhile.

so that they get the hell out of mine.

Monday, July 22, 2013


it is interesting even for me to follow the patterns i have subconciously created around scan time.

the week before i am anxious, cry at the drop of a hat, have extremely low patience (aka get irritated very, very easily), scattered, tired exhausted,  etc.

i also have this overwhelming feeling like i need to get a million things done but i don't have the energy to do them. i can't sit still, but i don't know what to do next.

whew, the weeks leading into scans are rough and tough.

i make mental lists of all of the things that i want to do if my scans come back clean. what i want to put on my three month list until the next scans come around. i don't share the list, i don't talk about the list - similar to celebrating good news, i feel like sharing the list of things i will do will cause the cancer fates to punish me. so, i quietly build the list, and hope against hope, it gets to come true.

i ask, over and over again, for the scans to come back clean. i make deals with the fates. i beg for more time.

i carve out as much time with barrett and malena as possible. i focus on fun time.

tonight is a good example.

dinner at chicken robin.

frozen yogurt for barrett and malena.

watching malena play in the fountains.

rolling up my work pants and joining her. saying yes to the moment and playing and laughing and splashing. watching other parents look at me like "what is that woman doing in the fountain?" smiling to myself that i know a little secret they apparently do not. getting up and in the water with your kid is a thousand times more fun than sitting on the bench watching them play without you.

getting home and eating some leftover birthday cake. yum.

this time next week i will be feeling like total shit from the contrast i have to drink. i will have been on the couch for a couple of hours feeling like hell. i dread that feeling.

in some ways i just want it to be over with, i want to know. in other ways, i want this week to last forever because i don't want to know if it isn't good news.

wanting time to either move faster or slower depending on the moment.

but monday at 3pm will come regardless. i will have a needle in my arm. i will get an iv put in. i will have my blood drawn. will taste saline. i will drink the contrast. i will get sick to my stomach. i will lay on the ct table and listen to the machine tell me "breathe in, hold your breath, breathe out". i hate that electronic voice. i will see the irritating ceiling tiles that i wish i was tall enough to rip out myself. you know i would if i could and it wouldn't get me kicked out so i couldn't see my doc anymore;) i will feel my body warm all over when they shoot the contrast straight into my iv for the final part of the scan. i will wait the 30 minutes afterwards to ensure that i don't have a reaction. i will do it all as i have so many times before.

i will wait for 4:30 on tuesday to come when the doc tells us the results. i will hope with everything that i have that when he opens that door and looks at us that it is good news.

i will hope. i will hope. i will hope.

i will do all of these things. i simply have no choice. it is all part of the fight.

i hate this fight. more than you could ever imagine. i am sick and tired of fighting. i am pissed off that i have to fight.

but the hate just fuels the fire for the fight.

so i will carry on, and i will fight. even through the tough weeks like this one. i will keep going and keep breathing.

i refuse to do anything else.

f*&# cancer.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

the whole fam-damily

this weekend our entire family was together. love that.

on the drive over, the view was amazing.

looking forward.

looking back.

licking the beaters with the red velvet frosting that my mom makes me for my birthday cake. every single year. the same cake since i was a little kid. my favorite. once a year, i can pretty much eat an entire cake by myself and be pretty damn happy about it.

cold gluten free hard cider. yes please.

sister reflections in a downtown coffee shop window.

qt with our youngest family member.

laughter. lots and lots of laughter. laughing so hard there were tears. the best kind of laughing.

celebrating my 38th, my nephew's 23rd, my sis-in-law's 51st. a july birthday celebration.

the one part of our weekend that i wish would not be real was the sad news that came with a phone call saturday morning that our family friend shelly unexpectedly and tragically lost her 19 year old son. we send her endless amounts of love. please send good vibes, prayers, mojo to shelly and her family as the move through this unimaginable time. thank you.

another week begins. this is scan countdown week. it is going to be a long, emotional, anxious filled week. here we go peeps. deep sigh.

good thoughts. good thoughts. good thoughts.

speaking of good thoughts, here is the latest good news on chase:

"I had the alarm set for 7am just incase- but there was no need for that. The butterflies in my gut had me up and atem just past the 6 O clock hour. Lisa had all of our gear packed the night before-Chasers meds, formula, change of clothes, diapers, soft wipes ect.. It seemed really odd to be ordered to bring all of this with us to back to Gillette's for surgery- the same hospital that used to supply us with everything from meds, beds, and everything inbetween, all the way down to the fancy socks with traction on the bottom of them. The hospital that we spent most of our last 90 days roaming the halls, and making friends with all of the busy bodies in here, was now treating us a visitor- a normal out patient.
We arrived a couple minutes late, but with plenty of time to check in and meet the surgical team. We got the lowdown on the procedure and possible complications. After wiping Chaser down with the steril pads, I put on the disposible surgical outfit and headed in with the team to be by Chaser as they put him under. They put the gas mask on him, and in very short time he was fast asleep. I came back to the waiting room, where Lisa and I were greeted by the Hospital Dietician to discuss Chasers formula and weight. He has actually gained a pound in the last week despite all of his throwing up! We agreed to keep him on the formula he is on, and try keep notes to try and figure out when and why he is throwing up so often. A couple of minutes later we headed up to the 4th floor the say hi to our friends up there. As we exited the elevator, the pager went off. It had only been about 15 mins, this couldn't be good.... I called the number on the pager and they said the Dr. was done, and everything went great! We went back down to meet with the dr. She explained everything went very smooth. The scope inside his stomach revealed the ulcer is gone, but he does have an inflamed esophagus. This might explain why he is throwing up all the time- he has already been on a med for this, but we have switched to a pill form, in hopes it will be more effective. The botox and fenel shots when great as well. Chase is now wide awake, mellow, and is recovering like a champ! We just finished the Mik-ey demo -we can take that off our bucket list :) We are packing up and getting ready to head home. Hopefully Chasers good spirit stays with him the rest of the day and through the night. Lisa and I are planing on heading down to Lake front to relive our hair band days- and watch Bret Michaels reveil whats under that pretty bandana of his during the concert! Thank you all for your thoughts and prayers- Heres to more of them answered! God is Good!"

monday. make it a good one (or as good as it can be considering it is a monday;)). xo

Thursday, July 18, 2013

and so it begins

day one. year 38.

it was a good day.

scratch that, it was a great day.

quiet morning at home.

favorite coffee shop. green tea. playing.

lunch at a favorite restaurant.

some shopping at a favorite craft store.

notice a trend? lots of favorites;)

red velvet gluten free cupcake. yum.

watching my daughter take pictures in downtown seattle. "wait mom, i need to take some pictures of that building." so i waited. i watched. i soaked it in.

a birthday nap.

a pottery vase painted by my daughter. i heart her handmade gifts.

great dinner.

seeing the new disney movie "turbo" with our besties.

lots of good wishes and love.

solid rest.

couldn't ask for a better start to 38. loved every second of it (minus the two hours i was working).

have a great weekend peeps. enjoy it. soak it in. say your thanks. share your love. xo

Tuesday, July 16, 2013


dear 38,

it is good to see you today, i wasn't sure that you would show up. but, i am so very glad that you did.

i hope that in this coming year, you bring me good scan results and that the word "treatment" isn't one that becomes part of my reality. if we can accomplish this, you might just be in the running for the title of my favorite year yet. i have had a lot of good years, so the competition is fierce (not a threat, but just so that you get your game on). but i think you have a pretty good shot, so put your best effort forward.

i look forward to you bringing me a million more memories with my family and friends. i want another year to watch malena grow. i would love for you to include more trips, more firsts, more everything and more anything. just more. yes, just more. please. please. please.

i think that i feel differently about you than other people might. i often hear people say how much they dread getting older as they come up on another birthday. between you and me, i can barely stand it when i hear words like that and it takes everything i have to keep my mouth shut. but i do keep my mouth shut, because everyone has different perspectives, and rightly so. but if i were to open my lips, they would tell the person that they should feel so lucky to have a birthday, even more so if they have been blessed to have a year of good health. yes, a birthday signifies getting a year older - but that is the whole point, life granted you an entire additional year. you got 365 days. you got to live. you should celebrate that. you are lucky. you should embrace it and say your thanks, you got more time, the best possible gift. you didn't even have to spend one moment of the previous year thinking about whether or not you would live long enough to see that next birthday. it was just a given for you. more time was just a given. you should thank your lucky stars once every single day. maybe twice. ok, maybe three times just to be sure the fates hear you.

i will celebrate you quietly this year as i have in the past three years. i know that you know this by now. but i still don't celebrate too loudly around birthdays or good scan results. i feel like too much celebration can cause the cancer fates to feel that i don't still take them seriously. i know that i should celebrate loudly, but i can't shake the feeling that i will be punished if i do. so i will go with my gut, there is comfort in that for me. i will embrace the day doing things that make me happy, and with all of my heart, i will thank you for giving me this day. a new start on a new year. i will make it worth it. i promise.

as a heads-up, if i live to see my 40th birthday (and to clarify, i totally plan on it), i might celebrate a little bit louder on that day. just between you and me, i would feel like celebrating that birthday might be a little bit of a f*&# you to the cancer fates, and one that i think that they would agree i deserved. but that doesn't mean i love you any less 38, i will invite you to that party, you will have helped me get there after all.

more time.

that is really the only present that i want. i want as much time as i can possibly get. i promise you that i will make the most of everyday and will make you proud by living a good life and giving out a lot of love.

i look forward to seeing how you and i move forward my friend.

thanks again for showing up, i am so grateful to have you here with me.

you and me. we can do this. we just have to stick together through the good and the bad. hopefully way more of the former than the later.

anywhere i go 38, you go.

with much love,


Monday, July 15, 2013

the day is here again

well, july 16th is here.

one of the hardest days of my year, three years running.

i looked back tonight on my two posts about july 16th that i wrote in 2011  and in 2012.

hands-down, this is the toughest anniversary yet. the stage iv diagnosis being the clear reason why. i feel emotional. anxious. nervous. i started tearing up about 15 times on and off today for no real reason. no real reason other than (the very real reason of) the proximity to tomorrow and knowing i need to take a deep breath and make it through.

coming into the 16th feels like hitting a little bit of a rough patch. but it will be just a patch and then i will move off of it. i always do.

july 16th. february 20th. 

on this july 16th, i will focus on the fact that it is a day that also brings good things. it is the day that my friend mari was born and this year she celebrates a happy and healthy 38th birthday. i am thankful for all of the good things that she has brought to my life, and the countless laughs that we have shared through the years.

i am also thankful that chase is home, here is the update on our little warrior:

"This morning we had a family meeting -Tank, Ava, Chase, Lisa and I. We decided we needed to get out and do something as a family today. After discussing several options, we narrowed it down to two: Go to the zoo, or go to Three Rivers Park in Bloomington and go on a nature walk. We picked the right one! We loaded up Chasers Stroller, meds, water, misting fan to keep Chase cool, the kids roller blades and off we went. Chase handled the 25 minute car ride great. He seems to actually enjoy riding in the new car seat we bought him. This one is much better that first one we purchased, that actually put a couple sores on his back- which explains why he cried the entire time on the first few day passes back when he resided at Gilletts. We took turns pushing Chase in the stroller, while Tank and Ava roller bladed ahead, making sure to stop and pick one of every wild flower they could find. Chase seemed to really enjoy the walk. Im sure the fresh breeze and all of the sounds of nature did him alot of good! We took the path up to a large public park that was full of life. People Barbecuing, family picnics, kids running, and laughing everywhere. Tanner and Ava wanted join in the fun on the huge jungle gym with the rest of the kids, so Lisa and I sat on the sidelines and watched them be kids. As I sat next to Chase, wiping the spit bubbles from his lips, and spraying him every so often to keep him cool- I couldn't help but to look around in envy. I watched as children the same age as Chase ran by, there eyes full of excitement, their little bodies moving effortlessly towards the huge metal and rope fortress. Not a worry on their mind, except maybe which one to attack first. For a breif moment, I felt as though I was looking through a window and I was locked inside. I realize that life is much different now than it was in the past, and I know that I have the tools to deal with it, as does Lisa. These moments of weakness, definately motivate me to do everything I can to help Chase move forward in this journey! The kids seem to be handling Chases condition much better as well. They were talking to him and interacting with him all day long as if nothing had changed. It was a great day of bonding and experiencing taking Chase out into what he used to know and love.

The last two days have educational for Lisa and I. We are getting the Meds and formula thing down. Yesterday, Chase had a pretty ruff day. It seemed everytime we got settled, he would throw up on his clean clothes, and we have to change him again. We are not sure what is causing this, as are the doctors- hopefully when he has his scope on Friday, the look into his tummy will reveil something. What ever was bothing him yesterday, did not seem to affect him today. He did not throw up once! Gramma and Grampa Lykken have made a pit stop here today. They are going to hang out and help out with the kids for a few days until till Gramma Judy returns. Tomorrow we are planning on visiting some friends on Prior to hang out for a couple hours, and then Tank and I am going to pick up a fish tank I purchased for Chasers room. I am sure he would be as excited as I am if he knew! I figure if we don't have time to go out and catch them, atleast we can watch them swim around in his room. I hope you all have a gr8 weekend. God is Good!"

i hope that you all have a great july 16th, do something great on this day.

let's make the good outweigh the bad.

are you in? i know you are, and that is why i love you. xo

Sunday, July 14, 2013

new threads

"the way it is"
there's a thread you follow. it goes among things that change. but it doesn't change.
people wonder about what you are pursuing.
you have to explain about the thread.
but it is hard for others to see.
while you hold it you can't get lost.
tragedies happen; people get hurt or die;
and you suffer and get old.
nothing you can do can stop time's unfolding.
you don't ever let go of the thread.
(william stafford)
i first heard this poem when liz lamoreux read it at the your story retreat i went to in june. the poem really resonated with me. so many threads. so many connections. family (both immediate and extended). friends (both new and old). strangers who have never met me yet have been kind enough to send me happy mail to lift my spirits. coworkers. the list goes on and on.
i have been thinking about that poem a lot since i first heard those words. i am beyond lucky to have so many threads connected to so many amazing people.
one of the new friends that i gained at the retreat is kelly barton. i wish that you could all meet her. she is the type of person that you meet and immediately know that your life just got better. she is a new thread and one you can tell you are going to want to hold on tight to. kelly taught watercolor painting at the retreat, and it was her inspiration that has led to many recent watercolor sessions with malena. malena and i have had such a great time painting together, and i thank kelly for the inspiration to pick up our brushes and paint our little hearts out.
during one of our recent paint sessions, we both made some happy mail to send to kelly.  
kelly wrote a gorgeous post - including some awesome pictures of what was in her package - about how she felt when she received the package, and you can read her words here.
she also makes ah-maz-ing art and jewelry, you should check out her etsy shop and her society 6 shop. but you should also read her blog and follow her through facebook and instagram. you will want the magic she puts out into the world to be a part of your world. trust me (we have already established multiple times that you can, and this time is no different;)).
new threads. you never know when they are going to come along. and then they do. and then you wonder what took so long for them to show up. and then you decide that they came just when they were supposed to. and then you thank your lucky stars that their thread finally connected to yours.
kelly's light shines out from indiana ("the middle" as she calls it), and i am pretty sure that as the sun sets, you can see that light all the way out here on the west coast.
yes, it is just that bright.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

dustin + chase

when i was on vacation, a saw a link to a video that i think that everyone should watch.

take three minutes and eleven seconds of your day. it is well, well worth it.

trust me. i have never steered you wrong before, right? right.

you will be the better for it. i know that i was.

ok, now click on this link and be moved by his honesty:

i also wanted to share some amazing news - chase got to come home from the hospital for good yesterday. awesome, awesome news.

here is the latest post:

"Welcome Home Chaser!
Written 12 minutes ago
We pulled into the neighborhood as a visitor for the last time yesterday about 6 o'clock. As we passed all of the Captian Chase signs, it felt better than it ever had before. Tanner and Casey met us at the neighborhood entrance (they had been waiting an hour), and Tanner cruised on the sidewalk with his little battery powered Motorcycle, and Casey on his bike yelling "Welcome home Chase!". As we rounded the final turn, our neighbors/friends, sitting in their lawn chairs, clapped and waived. We pulled up to the driveway to balloons and signs - Chase loves balloons!. It was definitely an awesome feeling! Chris and I we grinning from ear to ear! Its sooo good to have Chaser home!

Wow, what a last couple of days these have been. A whirl wind of emotions. We have gone from, extremely excited we are bringing our boy home to overwhelmed to scared to excited again, just a number of mixed feelings. I am sitting in Chase's room watching him sleep in his new hospital bed. Trying to make the once was a office, a warm and comfortable environment for my sweet boy to sleep in. Of course we are repeating the Captain Chase theme and it is coming together slowly but surely. Chase's night last night was his first official night here at the house and we couldn't have asked for a better one. He slept so peacefully and didn't wake up once. Today was his first day at therapy in Burnsville. Got up extra early so we were prepared to leave and get there on time. I am not used to packing a extra bag full of meds,
diapers, extra outfits and towels for throwing up. It is a good thing I did because I needed it all. I was solo today for the first time. It was my responsibility to get Chase to and from for his therapy. It was a bit of a challenge but both Chase and I survived. Of course Chase decides to throw up while I was driving but I remained calm just pulled over and began to clean him up. Thought that was out of his system because it was a good one but no, two more times during therapy. Not a good first impression Chase. Ha! The afternoon was spent with Tanner pulling out all the toys that Chase used to play with and some of the new ones we have bought to spark that little brain of his. Tanner and Grandma took turns playing and cuddling with him today, while I tried to organize the house. I am trying to make some kind of rhyme and reason out of this whole incident. It is like having a newborn all over again.
Although the last 30hrs have been overwhelming, I would trade them for nothing. My little boy is home, with my other precious two children, and we are once again a family! Welcome home Chaser! God is Good!"
have a great weekend peeps, enjoy all of the moments. xo

Friday, July 5, 2013

good start to july

july, you are off to a good start my friend.

pony rides.

 selfies on train rides.

watercolors on the patio at night.


clear scans for my melapeep mary -- wooohoooo!!!!!!!!!! (so, so happy for you mary)

i am going to be quiet for a couple of days on the blog, back sometime later next week. i am going to be enjoying time with the sheehan crew for the next couple of days.

hope your july is off to a great start too. xo

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

be your own beloved

my dear friend em posted a link today that i was intrigued by when i saw a short excerpt from it. the words that introduced the link said the following: "the older we get, the more loved ones we lose to accidents and illness. their passing is always tragic and far too soon. i sometimes think about what these friends—and the people who love them—wouldn’t give for more time in a body that was healthy. a body that would allow them to live just a little longer. the size of that body’s thighs or the lines on its face wouldn’t matter. it would be alive and therefore it would be perfect."

the words "wouldn't give for more time in a body that was healthy" sucked me right in. obviously, i can relate.

i think that anyone who has the ability to affect how girls think of themselves should read the article which is called when your mother says she's fat. it is an awesome piece.

when i was on the retreat in oregon, i was talking to vivienne mcmaster about her upcoming web class that is starting. vivienne rocks by the way, and if you aren't reading her blog, liking her on facebook, or following her on instagram like yours truly, you should be. trust me. your life will be better for having her insight in it. the words "be your own beloved" are the words you see at the top of her website. enough said.

she is the reason that i have started to take more self-portraits, including this one that i shared from the retreat.

her upcoming class that is kicking off is called "be your own beloved" and you can read more about it here.  i decided at the retreat that i was going to sign up and was going to do the daily prompts with malena. she seriously loves to take pictures, and there is no better focus for her to have than her own image.

bring on the selfies, i can already tell you that every single one is going to show a gorgeous girl - the ones that are of me and the ones that are of her.

i think that one of the best gifts i could ever give malena is for her to know that she should always be her own beloved. so glad that vivienne will be teaching us both this lesson.

can't wait for class to start.

ps) tnx em for sharing - xoxo

Monday, July 1, 2013

where i stand

had a great photo prompt today from my class about documenting where i stand.

i took this shot today of where i stand when malena and i leave her gymnastics class. every week we walk in this parking lot. her class is one of my favorite parts of our weekly routine. i love that i now have a shot of our feet planted on this piece of pavement that brings me so much joy every week.
tonight was a girls night and so i let malena pick what she wanted to do for dinner. she chose "chicken robin" - are any of us surprised? nope, i don't think that we are. we had a great time eating, talking, and playing tic-tac-toe. she even got to sit in a seat all by herself since we were in a two top table, she was so excited. why she is holding up the sugar holder is a mystery to me, but it made me laugh so we went with it.
we spent 1.5 hours tonight on our patio doing watercolors. it was awesome. so much fun spending time with her painting and talking about our days, and her giving me tips on what colors i should be using. love that she has so much painting advice that she is inspired to share with me, makes my heart happy that she is so invested in how our paintings turn out.
from where i stand, this was a great monday. pretty amazing thing to say considering it was my first day back at work after vacation. not surprising that gymnastics, a fun dinner, and time outside painting can make all of the crappy parts of the day disappear. when you focus on where your feet are planted everything else seems so much less important.

hope your monday was as good as mine. may the places where you stand bring you joy. xo