Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Some brains just work that way...

I am taking today off.

In my place I give you this:

This makes an excellent lullaby, btws.


Monday, October 29, 2012


Here is the thing: baby girl hoodies are awful. Mostly, sometimes they are ok, but mostly blech. I wanted a cool shirt or sweatshirt for Beans first Halloween. I saw some skeleton hoodies at Target, but the girl ones were pink and sparkly, it was weird. So I grabbed the boys version (black with white bones, doy!) and brought it home! I was fairly excited for my little punk rock baby. Her dad had other plans though. He really likes a little pink on his baby girl and thought this was too, too, boyish. So I came up with a solution, I had seen versions of this sweatshirt with a little heart on the chest, and I thought a little pink heart would make it just enough girly for her dad. I took some scrap pink fabric we had laying around and hand stitched a little heart on the chest. Now she is the perfect combination, a little bit of pink for her dad and a little bit of punk rock for her mom.

...and a little bit of kiwi lover.

...and a little bit of ghost too!
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Sunday, October 28, 2012

Curioser and Curioser

Lyla Jane is turning into a kitten.

A curious, curious, kitten. A kitten that wants to pull and tug and open and touch and throw and poke at everything.

Or maybe she is just turning into a...toddler.

Either way, she needs some new stimulus. Some new adventures.

Now, we pull out pots and pans, we play with paint, we play with water, and we do what we can to nurture her curiosity with what we have in the house. But at some point you hit a road block and a little inspiration is really helpful. A girl can only sit in front of a cabinet and open and close it for so long, you know what I mean? Unless you are on some sort of drugs. And then you could probably do that forever. But I'm not sure she's into that sort of thing...also babies shouldn't do drugs, doy.

Thank goodness for this website, Hands on, as we Grow.

Ton's of activities and projects for all ages. I just focused on the multisensory ones right now because they seemed like they'd be able to keep a kitten pretty entertained. Since that is what we are dealing with here...

So last night I sat and cut some fabric scraps into ribbon. I stuffed them into two of her old bottles she doesn't use anymore and I let her go to town. At first she just played with the bottles, banging, rolling, chewing. And then she discovered the fabric, and sat and pulled out each piece one at a time. It was pretty awesome to watch.

We also filled some small bottles with food coloring, water, and some soap! She loves to shake the crap out of them, she loves to crinkle the bottle. Later she might enjoy watching the bubbles settle. For now she just likes the funny sounds and colors.

 While going through my fabric scraps to make ribbons I found this set of sample fabrics I had ordered when we were thinking of getting window treatments made. This fabric is cool because it was already cut into little squares and it's all different textures. Bean is asleep right now, but when she wakes up I'll see what she thinks of these. I am imagining some throwing and a lot of chewing. But I think it's good for her to play with the different textures.
We are just going to spend our Sunday overdosing on multisensory activities. If next time we see you we pet you and hug you, it's not the ecstasy. It's just our curiosity.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Our little big girl.

My little big girl turned 11 months old last week. Which means in less than a month we will have a one year old running (RUNNING) around the house. So here is the deal. I wrote the following list for our bean in honor of her hitting the eleven month point. All of these things are but a mere fraction of what we love about our little girl. I mean, they tell you that you don't know love until you have a child of your own (which here is the thing, you know love it's just like a whole different love, not that people who don't have kids don't know love, that is just dumb. That being said, we didn't know this kind of love, this kind of love is a whole different ball game). Our love for this person, our Lyla, only gets stronger every day. And like, the pride you feel for the things she does, that is an amazing feeling. The pride. We just die everytime she learns something new, or figures something out on her own. To get to watch her, to be a part of her growing up, we just feel so lucky.

Ah, but with all this growing, all this pride also come a whole new bag of emotions. This little girl started walking fairly early (all us Flores kids do I guess). The pride we felt was astonishing, a little misplaced, as every kid is different, this isn't really something to, like, boast over. But we were proud none the less. And now, you guys, she is trying to run. And she is running away from us. And with this new power has come the power of want. And want is pretty powerful, especially when she can't have. Oh yes. Whining. Tantrums. They are just mild at this point, but you can hear it, you can see it churning behind her eyes. She wants, she can't have, and this really annoys her. Right now this is relegated to us taking away the dangerous things, or moving her to change a diaper or put on clothes. Little things, we'll get a whine or a few tears. With some distraction she is over it. But it is also happening when she wants so badly to be able to do something by herself that she hasn't figured out how to do yet. Like climbing up on the couch, into the tub, reaching something on a counter. She gets frustrated, with herself, and this is new. And this will be interesting. We are watching this person emerge from her baby cocoon. And she is figuring it out. And we are figuring it out. And it is pretty cool to see her personality become so much stronger. We are a little scared, not gonna lie, about how to nurture this. How to discipline this. It's a lot man. So truthfully, eleven months is both spectacular and terrifying. Do I have to even say that it's all worth it? I mean, duh, have you seen her smile? Erases a million tantrums, in a second. Which, come to think of it, could be a very dangerous tool should she learn how to use it....

For our Lyla Jane, eleven months old, here are eleven things that we adore about you:

1. Your laugh. You will laugh freely and often. You laugh at things that are funny. You laugh because other people are laughing, which when the grown ups are laughing at a very grown up thing and you chime in, great comedic timing baby girl. You laugh at mommy and daddy. You laugh at strangers. You wake up laughing some days. This kills us.
2.Your shyness. Baby girl, you aren't really shy. You can be kind of a ham actually. But, when you meet new people, or are in a new situation you slow down. You get quiet, you look for me or daddy just to make sure. It takes but 10 minutes before you are comfortable, but for those ten minutes your quietness, your caution, are amazing to watch. It's like we can see what you are thinking. It is a very thoughtful moment to catch you in and we love it.
3.Your appetite. You would eat and eat and eat all day long if you could. For such a little babe you sure can scarf down. It may be genetic, but it's probably just because you are growing like a maniac! Yesterday you had two dinners, one with daddy and one when we went out. You ate mashed potatoes, ham, and spinach with daddy. And at the restaurant you ate a corn tortilla, beans, rice, and chicken. And not just a little bit, like, a lot. I also nursed you in between. Which means you had three meals within two hours. And you were very happy about this. So far you love all food. I hear this may change when you start practicing your ability to make choices, but for now you will eat anything. Although you have your favorites, one of which is the all powerful banana. Which btws, you ask for by name, "uhnana", we also adore this.

4. Animal sounds. This just destroys us, you have us in giggling fits when we ask you what a horse says, "naynaynaynay..." you say always as you run away. But the real killer is your squirrel sound, you make this clicking noise with your tongue and your teeth when asked what a squirrel says. We die. Every. Single. Time.
5. Your face.
6. Your baby bum.
7. Bathtime. You love the water. Sometimes you will go into the bathroom and just look longingly into the bathtub. You like to put your toys in first as it's filling up with water. And then you lift your leg like you are just going to hoist yourself into the magical bath. You aren't quite there yet. whew. You also like to drink the water, you like to stick your face under water, and go 'swimming'. We call it swimming, you lie on your belly and move around the whole tub. Just recently you discovered the drain too! We keep you in the tub as the water drains and you frantically try to 'save' your toys from going down the drain, until you realize they aren't going anywhere and then you just wave bye bye to the water.
8. Playing chase. You trying to run is like, the cutest thing to us. Arms hanging by your side, hands flipped backwards slightly behind your back, waddle, waddle, waddle as fast as you can away from us. We adore this now. Pretty soon this is going to exhaust us.
9. Your love of books. Granted, half the time you love them just for chewing. But the other half of the time, the times when you go get a book all by yourself and bring it to us and then try to sit on/in our laps and are quiet and still from start to finish. This is what we adore. You are a mover. You are a physical little girl. And these moments, that you choose to sit with us perfectly still. These are some of my favorite times.
10. Hugging Panda. You HUG PANDA. Do I need to say more? ADORABLE.
11. Hugs and kisses. Your idea of a hug is resting your head on us and smiling. It's a very specific smile, only used when hugging. I mean. Holy heart melt. And your big fat open mouth tongue out kissing! Swoon! Although, hopefully these will be reserved just for us until your 30. Ahem.

This list, and this probably could go without saying, could be a million things long and it still wouldn't be long enough to fill with all the things we adore about you. Thank you bean, for letting us be your parents, we love you immeasurably.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Kept her in a pumpkin shell.

Finally a little Halloween spirit here at CasaIrlanda.

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Thursday, October 25, 2012

Big, Heavy.

My dear friend Claire's son, Mr. Beckett, or Beauregard as I like to call him, saw a walrus when he was just around one year old. He came home from this life changing visit and felt it his mission in life to 'warn' everyone he saw about this walrus. As soon as he saw you he would look up at you, shyly and yet confident in his message, and say "BIG. HEAVY. WALRUS." He said it in this funny breathy voice, he meant business. And we were warned. Big. Heavy. Walrus. 

This story comes to mind because all around me things are happening that should come with the same warning, "Big. Heavy." These big and heavy moments have been happening one after another for a little over a year, and they are happening mostly to everyone around us. Our big and heavy was our little girl joining us last November, and she was just that, big AND heavy at 10 1/2 lbs and 22 inches long. And heavy as in our lives were never the same...and big in that our hearts had no idea what love was before that day. And let me tell you, we knew how to love, just not this big.

That was our big and heavy, and it was a huge moment. It's been a huge year because of our bean. But, it's our friends and family that have been having the biggest and heaviest moments, the kind that should've come with a warning. And this is a strange feeling. To have it going on around us and not to us. While we have been blissfully enjoying getting pregnant, having a baby, making a home, a lot of people close to us have had major life changing events occur. And it's like, we have been floating along on this first year parents cloud, and have been shoulders to cry on, hands to pat backs, fingers to send uplifting emails, and ears to listen...but we have been just outside, because none of it was happening to us directly, and we were just in la la land. It hit me just recently how big and heavy this last year has been because of two instances in this last week. One being my new coworkers boyfriend is having emergency surgery to remove a mass from his brain. It's just so scary. And a friend of ours had to check in to the hospital because she has been very sick for awhile and nobody knew how to fix her, and she just needed more help. She has a one year old son, and for the most part has been having a similar year to us, except this heavy illness lurking around every corner. Weighing down the daily things. I don't know how to process how hard this would be, how hard this is for her and her family. It's all too big.

And then I thought about it. I looked back over the last year. And I had to sit down, I had to take a deep breath. A close friend lost his mother to cancer, my parents sold their home of 30 years, my sister in law lost both her grandmothers within months of each other. My best friend had a cancer scare. My brother got married. My cousin is going to prison. There were so many babies. So many weddings. People had a whole lot of life happening this year. A big and heavy year for everyone. Not to mention it's an election year, and for many people our basic human rights are on the line. It is all so heavy.

So how do we deal? Like, how do we process all this stuff and laugh and love and giggle? How do we keep things light? Because it seems to me that everyone in my life is doing just that. They are amazing examples of strength and courage. It does take courage to start a family, to say I do. And more importantly it takes strength to lose the most important thing to you and to be able to still make your friends laugh, and to laugh yourself. Is it strange to clump the sad with the happy? The babies with the death? The marriages with separation? Maybe. I think that death and life are equally heavy, one you come out the other end with a heart so full it hurts, and the other can leave a hole so big it hurts. But either way it requires strength and adjustment and the time to figure out how to move forward. With life there is more laughter, and with death more tears. And love is much lighter than hate. But all of these things that have made up the last year, they all are apart of growing, and growing up. We know this, because television and novels teaches us this, when you grow up parents die, and there are weddings, and there are babies, and sickness, and there is sadness and happiness. But you just never think that it will all happen in a short year. That all of the things, all of them, will happen to the people around you all at once. That is big. Heavy.

*there is an unpublished, unfinished, post about my baby girl turning 11 months old floating around. I am hoping to post it before she turns one.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

This is important.

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Monday, October 22, 2012


Sunday is a day of rest and football so excuse my absence yesterday. Today I will post twice. The second post will be about my darling baby kangaroo turning 11 months old. The first, this one, will be about my grandmother.

Today would have been my grandma's 90th birthday. She passed away too young, but that happens to the good ones huh? I can't imagine what her statuesque frame would look like at 90, would she be frail? Would she have gotten more snarky? Or less? Would her and my mom still tap dance in the kitchen? Would she be in a retirement home? Or still sitting at the end of her dining room table smoking her cigarettes? Would she still put cherries on her ham at the holidays? Would my grandfather have fought a little longer just to be with her? Would we still all get together for holidays at her place? Would less time fall between seeing my cousins? Would we be best friends like my mom says we would?

That is the thing I wonder about most. My mom is always telling me how much we would've liked each other, I was twelve when she passed away, and I loved her to bits. But, according to my mom, she would've loved the adult me and me her. Kindred spirits. Which is interesting really, because my mom is adopted, so genetically we have nothing in common. And yet, from the time I can remember I felt so attached to her as a spirit. And after she passed away I felt an even stronger connection. She visits often in dreams, always a visit too, it is always that she has died and has come to just hang out for a bit. So yeah. I guess I just miss her. I miss the relationship we could have had. I don't feel sentimental towards her missing my graduation, or wedding, or even the birth of my child. I am sure my mom misses her more for those things than I do. I selfishly miss her, I miss her all for myself. I miss the friendship we would have had.

Ok, but honestly, it would have been pretty cool for her to meet baby girl. Though, she wouldn't have been too stoked on her big blue eyes. Apparently, my grandmother had a thing for brown eyed girls...

A haiku for my grandmother

I remember things
Like the sound of your laughter
And your bright red coat.

Sorry mom, if I made you cry again. I promise to be funnier next post. Maybe. I'm not sure when things got so heavy over here at Casairlanda. :)

Saturday, October 20, 2012

By any other name.

The name Lyla means "divine play".

The name Amelia means "Industrious"

The name Jesse means "Wealthy". I would say so...

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Friday, October 19, 2012

Oh Hai...ku

My mom started writing this year. She found herself with some free time and remembered how much she used to enjoy writing. She writes for herself, she writes for her online writing teacher, and she writes for me. Which is my favorite. She recently sent me a poem, an early birthday poem. It made me cry. I would say that is a sign of a very good writer. I appreciate that she is doing something for herself, I appreciate that she is working at her art. I appreciate the kind of role model that makes her for bean. It is good to have people in your life doing creative things, it's inspiring.

My mom's latest writing adventure has her writing Haiku's. She didn't realize I was such a lover of the medium. And true to form, I like to write a wee haiku once in awhile not fully understanding the history or the technical side of them, and my mother! She went head first into learning every thing there is to learn about the art. The history, the different styles, the technical side, the art side...all of the sides. And just as I promised myself I would blog daily she has promised herself to haiku daily. She even started a blog as a place to "jot her thoughts" in Haiku form.

My grandpa used to comment to me "Are you your mother's daughter or what?" it was usually in response to me acting silly, or singing, or dancing. My dad will comment to my mom, "You and your daughter are so much alike" usually when she is being stubborn or a total nut. But for all that we are alike, for the silliness that is genetic, there are pretty distinct differences too. And when we wobble down our own paths and end up in the same place, say at Haiku's, even then we go about them in such different ways. There is no one else in my life that I share this relationship with. Where as I go about writing in a lackadaisical fashion, she has discipline. Where I dabble and hop and skip, she learns and engulfs herself. I've learned a lot from her because of that. I've learned a lot from her period.

A haiku for my mom.

My name in cursive 
On my moms old baseball mitt
Her fault, she taught me


Thursday, October 18, 2012

A daily dab will do ya.

Oh hello.

It's been awhile huh?

I come here, often actually, and I think...you should blog. You should write something. I also think, You should read more. You should paint more. You should cook more. And then I think, should should be a bad word. Removed from our vocabulary completely. It's a heavy word, it's implications are bigger than it seems, and it doesn't actually exist. A therapist I once had, her last name is Joy, I chose her because of that. I figured if we were in a movie that would be a really great sign, or at least a great character. I loved her, she was hands down the most effective therapist I had ever seen. Actually, now that I think about it maybe I should give her a call. It's always good to talk to someone. ANYWAYS. One of the things she told me that has stayed with me was "There is no future and there is no past, these things do not exist at this moment, the only thing that is real is what is happening right now." Duh, right? This is not to say that reminiscing, or learning from history is out the window. Or that planning for your future is pointless. But to WORRY about these things, to worry you said or did something wrong yesterday does nothing but take away from today. And to STRESS about what MIGHT happen tomorrow is even worse. She told me this in response to the anxiety I would feel, there was literally nothing I could do to change what had already happened, and no way I could actually know what was going to happen tomorrow...so, just let it go. Exhale.

SHOULD. Should have, should do. This word. This word just so fully IS just all about tomorrow and all about yesterday. "You know what you SHOULD do?" "You should've done this" "I should do....I should be..." No. I shouldn't do or be anything, I shouldn't have done anything differently. I COULD have. And maybe I will. But, not should. There is too much pressure with that word. It implies such negativity. So I banished it from my vocabulary. Especially now with a little girl that is going to grow up asking me all sorts of questions and maybe look to me for advice. There are so many 'coulds' in her life, she could be an astronaut, a ballerina, shy, loud...she could be so many things. She could be whatever she wants, whatever she sets her mind to. But I will try my hardest to not put any shoulds on that list. This is a grand idea I know, and in theory it's lovely, but I know that the reality is Should is part of our vocabulary and there are times when it will be necessary. You really shouldn't smoke tons of weed in junior high. I mean, let's be realistic here. But, let me also try to be optimistic and live in the present as much as I can. Let me relish in my shouldless world.

When I was just a little girl I asked my mother,
"What will I be? Will I be pretty, will I be rich?" 
Here's what she said to me
"Que Sera, Sera  
Whatever will be, will be  
The future's not ours to see  
Que Sera, Sera  

What will be, will be"
When I was young, 
I fell in love I asked my sweetheart, 
"What lies ahead? Will we have rainbows, day after day?" 
 Here's what my sweetheart said
"Que Sera, Sera  
Whatever will be, will be 
The future's not ours, to see  
Que Sera, Sera What will be, will be"
Now I have children of my own  
They ask their mother, "What will I be Will I be handsome, will I be rich?" 
I tell them tenderly
"Que Sera, Sera Whatever will be, will be  
The future's not ours, to see  
Que Sera, Sera What will be, will be"

So, after all that. I really just came here to say that I am going to try and blog every day. Every. Single. Day. I am a mom, and I have one hell of a babe. I am enjoying this crazy little life I have with my husband, in our home, with our family. We are cooking and doing one tiny house repair at a time. We are trying to balance love and baby, life and work, and well there is actually a lot I'd like to put in writing. It will be very helpful to put into words my life, so as to really appreciate it daily. We also have a pretty huge adventure we are about to embark on, an adventure that will provide much to write about......soon, I hope. :)

So that is all.

Take me back oh world of blog.