Posts Tagged ‘mothering’
Born in the tropics, I never realized how crucial the sun was to my existence… Until I left them…
We’ve lived in Puerto Rico, Oklahoma, Florida, and now Germany. And we hadn’t realized we had been taking the gorgeous sunshine for granted. Even Oklahoma is blessed with sunny days practically year round. Germany, not so much. We’ve now been here an entire year and it seems the sun has been hiding at least two thirds of that time. For a creature like myself, cloudy days are for cuddling in bed, reading books, relaxing, ignoring chores, sometimes being a little gloomier and melancholy. We don’t go out on cloudy days, we hide, we hibernate, and we come back out when the sun returns. This is a serious problem when the sun goes away for several days, weeks, months at a time…
So here I am, multiple days have passed since the sun graced us with it’s full presence. And OMG I’m loosing my mind. What to do with little ones cooped up inside over rain and unpredictable weather?! We paint, we do puzzles, we play games, but most of all… we watch lots of TV (supper :/)… There’s really not a whole lot to do indoors people! (At least not that keeps a 3yo entertained for much longer than 15 minutes).
So what’s this? The sun?! After all the clouds and rain and cold (why is it 50some degrees outside already?! COME BACK SUMMER!) We decided to sneak out of the house for a quick walk while it all lasted…
Buggy here photo bombing my flower shot…
Away we go.
Oh hey look… I have another baby now… Just in case you missed that part…. LOL
Ready for exploring with her monocular (I’m not totally convinced that’s an actual word)
Mommy vision… Sometimes big sis wants to ride too…
The now 3 year old is into “silly faces”. Which I guess are better than her “smile” faces… You know the one… Crazy not sure that’s a smile, smile, eyes closed…
Which I guess are also better than baby “why you stop pushing my vibrating chair” faces… LOL
**Side note… Cel pics will always have a date stamped on them 😉 I want to remember when I took them, so I do that in the phone. Sorry if it’s distracting hehe**
For weeks I had been considering the question…
Should I post… *deep breath* …phone pics on Camera Latte?
Because here’s the truth, once you get into all the baby gear: the diapers, wipes, extra clothes… and the toddler gear: lunch box, toys, extra clothes (yes, were in that dreadful place again as Little Lue started having accidents again), jacket, and the occasional scooter. Oh and lets throw in baby wearing or a giant stroller into the mix, the last thing I want to jam into my already ginormous and oddly heavy bag is a massive DSLR.
***A little camera talk, feel free to skip lol***
Because of this dilemma, I have set my sights on a the new mirrorless cameras… Many in the photography world are sure that they are the “future” of photography. It’s hard to say wether that is true or not, but right now, for me, those thinner, lighter, and fantastic little cameras are calling my name. I will probably be jumping on the mirrorless bandwagon soon, but until then, I need to figure something out. Anyone around here shoot mirrorless? I’m thinking of going with the Fujifilm xT1 and getting her a small pancake lens (the 27mm), thoughts?
The set up looks quite lovely if you ask me 😉
Image from fujivsfuji.com
Until I figure out a more compact camera system, or the Littlest Princess and Little Lue require less stuff (never?) I probably wont be dragging around my D90 very many places, much less so the D700. And the lenses, forget it… So lately, all I’ve had in my hands for capturing our little adventures is this contraption… The Samsung Galaxy s4 Zoom
Image from gsmarena.com
And while it’s proven to be quite the conversation starter… truth is, it’s nothing more than little point and shoot attached to a cel phone. Nifty and a fun little gadget, but momma still misses her big cameras… so so very much…
So back to the original question… Should my beautiful blog, created with images lovingly taken and edited with my DSLRs and Lightroom also be a place for my every day phone pics……..
Absolutely! Why? Because it’s not the tool, it’s the vision 😉 No matter how fancy a camera I could purchase, or the lenses, or set up, or anything else. Art isn’t about the tools, it’s about the artist and their message. It’s about taking what you have in your hands and creating something that draws you in, something that tells a story, conveys feelings, and shares a message.
If I had more time, or more sleep, or an extra arm, or maybe a nanny, a cook, and a maid, I might have a tiny bit more sanity left to figure out how to drag around one of my cameras. But for now, I will longly stare at it on my desk and look back at it with despair as I gather up jackets, and blankets, and keys, and snacks, and toys. Holding tiny toddler hands and bundling up baby in some kind of carrier, wrap or sling (boy do I have to post about THAT lol), heading out of the house in my totally misfitting clothes and forgetting to tie up my unbrushed hair into a messy bun. Away we go as I try to make it out of the house alive, with some sanity, to the oasis of motherhood, playdates.
So stay tuned my friends… Camera Latte lives… New posts coming soon, straight from my cellphone LOL!!
Happy New Year!!! Wow, is it already 2014?! Craziness!
I want to start blogging on some different topics this year. So what better time to start than now? So here’s it goes. No photos, just words
To start with I want to address something that I’ve noticed to be quite trendy in the mommy blogging world that is sometimes needed… but starting to get a little old…
So yeah… am I the only one who is pretty much done with the “complaining mom bloggers” fad? Here’s my take on this.
Motherhood is hard… Super draining… Life sucking… But for even those horrid days, those days where the house is destroyed, you ate total garbage, you vegged on the TV, and couch surfed for hours because you are so flipping exhausted of the same thing day in day out, your child(rend) decided to scream for what seems like most of the day, they tick, throw, bite, you cry in a conner wondering what you are doing wrong… Even on THOSE days, no mother will say they will trade that for anything else (well… not say it and mean it! LOL).
Why? Because the love we feel for our children is so immensely powerful that it becomes the air we breathe, the light in our day, the reason to get up and keep going. Because that love alone can sustain us. Because that love alone, is simply ENOUGH to make it all worth it. Because that love, and those small moments of bliss when you look at them sleeping, or playing nicely, or doing something new for themselves, those moment when your heart could explode with pride and aw and love, make even those bad days worth it.
Now mommies, lets rally together. Find friends, find family, find support! We are all in this together trying to survive the hard days. And we are all looking for a shoulder to lean on. I suspect that our worse days are days where we feel alone in this land of toys, dirty diapers, and messy faces. But let’s try and look at those faces we love and remember WHY every day we make the choice to get up and keep going.
And let’s go ahead and try to keep the complaining in check, yeah? It’s just unflattering. I hate doing it myself, even if we do HAVE to get it out. How about we get it out between friends over a cup of coffee instead of blasting the internet with so much negative energy that gets passed around over and over and over. I promise you, talking with a couple of close friends feels a WHOLE lot better than ranting on a blog (been there done both!). Let’s spread some positive mojo on the internet! Spread the stories about the moments that keep us going, the things that make us feel good about the work we have been given.
All of you, us, moms are so incredibly strong. Whether you stay at home all day with little ones and diapers and puke, or have to wrangle up kids to daycare and school and gymnastics and then yourself to work, you are an INCREDIBLY STRONG AND WONDERFUL MOTHER. Your children LOVE YOU and think you are FLIPPIN AMAZING and you ARE. Not only that, their innocent eyes that only see who you TRULY are see the most BEAUTIFUL, GORGEOUS, MOST PERFECT FEMALE FIGURE ON THIS PLANET. They do! So not only are you the BEST mother ever, the most AMAZING human ever, you are also the most BEAUTIFUL creature they could lay their young eyes on.
So keep on trucking through, momma… You got this. You are amazing. You are working SO hard to do what you do with little thanks or appreciation (heck, sometimes it feels like all we hear is how we are doing it wrong!). But I am a fellow mom. And I KNOW how hard you are working. Hats off to you. I support you, I think you are amazing, and I give you a HUGE thank you! Thank you for doing what is best for you and your family. Thank you for raising the children that will be my daughter’s coworkers, teammates, friends, lovers, family. Thank you for doing the best you can every single day. And if you need a shoulder to lean on, I am here for you, close friend or total stranger.
Now, ladies, let’s act like moms. And not like any mom, but like super moms. Because that’s what we all are, supper moms. Don’t get me started on the mommy wars. It’s not about HOW you do it, it’s about getting it DONE. You, we, are ALL amazing and doing the best we can for the children we are raising. No divisions! Just connections, support and understanding.
So let’s do it! Let’s fill the cyber space with some positive mommy vibes. Let’s talk about the things that connect us, make us strong and give us hope. Let’s gather and celebrate our strengths and not linger on our weaknesses. Yeah? Who’s with me?
Better late than never… Yes?
A few shots from our visit with Nana and Papo mid October <3
I know I have been quite neglectful of my little blog lately, but it’s only because I’m extra tired, extra cranky, and totally freezing my buttie. Why so tired? If you haven’t heard, I’m pregnant!
Yes, those are the big news I shared with my family as they arrived for their first visit to Germany. And between pregnancy naps, senseless emotional roller coastering, trying to play catch up with the house cleaning, and chasing around a not so compliant toddler, I’ve had little time for the fun stuff… But thankfully the 2nd trimester is finally here, and I’m starting to feel a little more like myself… Sort of…
Enough chit chat… Here are a few shots from the visit!!
It was my mom’s birthday (any excuse to come visit us!) and that evening my dad had Lucy walk into the room with a cake in the wagon, it was a pretty cute idea. My mom was so surprised
So today was Little Lue’s second gymnastics class and I totally love it. I mean… she loves it? Can it be both?
It’s just so much fun to see her in a different setting, taking directions from her teacher, and having SO much fun doing it. I love the teacher Miss Kate, she makes the class super fun and appropriate for their age. I hope Little Lue gets to be in her classes a lot while we’re here! (She’s the same teacher for her dance class, yay!)
Little Lue is pretty good at following directions, but still gets a bit side tracked haha. Still, I can tell she’s totally engaged in everything that’s going on.
So this morning we tried on our new leotards! Yes, both of them… Because mommy was too excited to wait for Little Lue to go potty after she had woken up before trying the first one on, and Little Lue was too excited wearing her gymnastics clothes to remember to tell me she needed to pee.
So off with that one and on to the other!
We were so very excited to get to class… Little Lue couldn’t wait to take off all her clothes and just have her gymnastics outfit. Glad it’s pretty warm in there! (Did I mention it was in the 40’s this morning!?)
When is it our turn?!?!?! ***waiting for the door to open***
Decided to do a little stretching while we waited…
I think my favorite part about today’s class was when Little Lue used to bar to swing! She did it all by herself and loved every second of it. (So did mommy!!! You can tell by the disproportionate amount of photos LOL)
And just like that it was over… I think it’s cute that they get little stamps on their hands once they are done We always talk about showing daddy her gymnastics stamps.
So after a day of treasure hunting at the flea market, wondering around Ramstein-Meisenbach through their little shops, and spending some time on the base BX searching for tiny dance leotards, there was still no nap.
At this point I figured Little Lue would just crash at 7pm or something… So instead of trying to force on sleep at 4pm, we decided to go on a walk.
Heading out the door I decided to grab my camera and make it a little photo walk. I’m glad I did. I kind of love some of these…
And this particular photo just spoke to me so much. It’s of this really young couple… I didn’t want to disturb them when we passed them, but I had to look back and take one shot. They were very blushy as we walked by, like they were meeting in secret. One of them had come in a motor cross bike, probably from another village… It just gave me that young love rushing feeling; crazy, forbidden, new, and exciting. Any how, I love how this photo came out. I want to make more artful pieces like this in the future
Sorry… that spot is already taken 😉
Seriously though… Toddler sized drum set?! EPIC WIN!!!
Side note, I’ve been trying to find it on sale online, but no luck. I bought this drum set on the Ramstain Base at MOMS. In case anyone was wondering.
So I was minding my own business getting busy taking photos for you guys of my lovely backyard… Yes I know, I can’t stop talking about it, but that’s because #1 it really is that awesome, #2 I haven’t had one in 3 years ad I’m as excited about it as I will be about the first snow fall, #3 I really haven’t met that many people who are interested in talking about my backyard. So yeah, this is my blog right?!?! You faithful readers shall listen to my ramble! Thank YOU. LOL!!!
Ok so yeah… outside, perfect day, dogs running around like wild animals scavenging (scratch that, that’s just Luna, Bongo is sitting in the sun like a big potato), Little Lue is playing with her little slide and what not and I’m trying to be all creative with my photos. And then… It happens…
I completely forget what I’m doing because Littele Lue is being way too cute and I end up with a bunch of photos of her instead! (This actually happens quite often, can you tell?)
But this isn’t just ANY old cuteness, this is first-time-EVER-swinging-HERSELF-on-the-swing CUTENESS. Considering my daughter is only two (shameless brag) this was pretty impressive to me. I think the secret was extra low swings, which seems to be very common out here as we had seem them like that on a couple of play grounds.
This is her process. She sits her little tush on the seat *without falling or needing help* (honestly I was pretty happy with THAT accomplishment) and then she tiptoes herself as far back as she can and BOOM she lets go, feet pulled up high in front of her and she enjoys her swing all by herself! At first she started with “One, two, THREE! Weeeeee!” But somehow this morphed into “Eeeeeeeeyyyyy, Princess! Weeee!” Which sounds way funnier to be honest. LOL
So yeah, so much for photos of my swings, trees, and dogs. I have photos of Little Lue in her swing instead LOL.
And for those keeping track of me on FB, the Basil Plant LIVES!!! lol
When you’re a military wife, you sometimes get in the mentality that you will never have life-long friends. You know, the one who’s your next door neighbor for 30 years and you have coffee every Sunday morning with, and your kids are the same age and go to the same schools and your husbands are good buddies and you just hang out. And then one day you will live together in a house and be just like the Golden Girls and it will be epically awesome.
Well… you know… In my imagination, it would totally be like that.
But the reality of moving every 3 years kind of puts a kink into my friendship fantasy. And it’s a kind of a total downer when you’re the type of person that enjoys hanging out with other humans with common interests.
But for all you military wives out there, I’ve got some news for you, you really CAN have some good long time lasting friends. The magic of the internet and facebook has seriously facilitated keeping up with friends at a distance in a creepy sort of stalkerish way. But every now and then, you realize that the friend you have been so oddly attentive to you over the internet, has also been attentive to you. Why? Because, perhaps, somehow even if they are a billion miles away, they connect with you and want to actually still keep in touch, and hope you will meet again on a faithful day. They really ARE a friend. Awesome!
More good news for military wives, turns out there are only a hand full of bases for people to go to. And chances are, that faithful day really does come!
So when it came time for our big move to Germany, was delighted to know that one of the friends I had made over 4 years ago in Oklahoma was happily waiting to meet up with me again in Germany. Despite being over an hour away from where we were, Lucie made no hesitation to welcome us to Germany the first week we were there! Even took us house hunting to our now new home. Thank you, Lucie, for making this transition feeling like coming back home. At least a little!
This past weekend was her younger son’s 1st birthday! Our families have obviously changed since the last time we met. We now have a 2 year old daughter, and their own daughter is now 3, we met her as just a tiny little infant. Now she is a big sister! It’s just really neat to see how we have both grown. I loved seeing her new home and family. It all feels so new and so familiar all at once. It was also great to see our husbands meet again.
Anyhow… CASSIAN! This post was supposed to be all about you… LOL!!
Cassian is such a little man! OMG he’s so big, just like Little Lue was. Extra chunky and just a doll. He’s still not walking, but watch out, it’s coming up. He’s going to be chasing after Lexie pretty soon! I love his little foe hauk, by the way.
Of course we had lots of fun at the party. Little Lue surprised me by being a tad shy at first, but it wasn’t long before she was asking for cupcakes and trying to steal the birthday boy’s gifts.
And I think this is probably enough rambling, you’re totally ready for the photos. Right?
For more photos of Cassian’s Birthday HERE!
I kind of love this tiny play room.
It’s kind of an odd set up. This room is at the end of our hallway on the third floor. You have to walk into it to get to our bed room. And it has the only closet on that floor. So it functions as Lucy’s room, and our bedroom closet LOL! But it’s nice that it’s SO close, because one day… one far away non foreseeable day… when Lucy sleeps in her own bed and room, she will be RIGHT there. And that makes me happy. LOL The room is also down the hall form the sewing/office so it will be nice that while she sleeps I can hang out in my editing/blogging/sewing/general awesomeness room.
So anyhow, this is the room! It’s one of the few rooms that’s done being set up (only others that are mostly done are the kitchen and dinning/play room). I really wanted to get her toys out quickly so I could entertain her more so it just got done the fastest. I still need to get some little bins to put in the closet for her clothes. Hoping that we will buy some this weekend.
Everything fit like a glove here! And that giant window mixed with the room’s white walls is just so lovely. Talk about a photo studio huh?
Oh! And check out the little tea set I got her from the Polish Pottery store at the BX! It’s so adorable and she LOVES IT. She’s been doing tea parties (well, in our tea parties we drink coffee LOL) every morning and every evening. So far she’s been very gentle and I don’t think she will break it. I do have 2 spare cups and plates just in case haha. But she really does love it, she will try and sneak them to other rooms, but since they are so tiny I’d rather they only stay in this room so we don’t loose them! For some reason she’s been hiding them inside the book shelf for safekeeping. LOL
So yeah! This is it I love being in that room because it has no boxes haha. But you have to be prepared to drink a LOT of pretend coffee 😛
Oh… And there is something totally magical about seeing those Toy Story characters on the shelves… I’m not sure why, but it just feels like they are totally alive like the movie I think I might need to go shopping for a Woody. I can’t help it, I’m a Disney Kid!
So I wanted to document life in our new empty German home, but it turns out just 24 hours later we got the email that our stuff would be delivered the very next day! So I really didn’t get much of anything LOL.
But here are a few shots of what I did manage to capture…
I kind of loved having an empty house. Like I could completely start over from scratch. When you start building your home young, you don’t really go out and buy your “dream” furniture LOL. Heck, I was too young to know what my “dream” furniture would look like. Now I have a better idea 😉 And it’s nice to know that we did a huge house cleansing before leaving Key West to give ourselves some room to collect some things that were more “us”. Hello European Furniture!! 😀
So yeah, I totally enjoyed daydreaming about how I would decorate and reorganize everything here… We bought an awesome dinning set off a yard sale page that I’m completely in love with. And this funky expandable desk (also yard sale) which I’m guessing will be the perfect sewing helper for larger projects.
Cant forget the lovely flower vase we needed for our freshly picked sun flowers. Need to pick more this week as they are finally starting to wilt.
Yay for new stuff!! Now to see how it would all merge with our other stuff coming in!!
But yeah, life just felt a little simpler those first few days. No internet, no furniture, just the family poking around the house and yard.
And oh that yard… I adore it… I do… It’s simply amazing to feel like I can enjoy being outside under some gorgeous pines and get this super cozy woodsy feeling right in my back yard. LOVE!
Decided to go cherry picking. Not sure if we used the proper technique, but a daddy thought a rake would suffice LOL.
Ok… so this is what it’s all REALLY about right here…
The Sunday stroll. This is usually a day reserved for relaxation and indulging in the simple pleasures of being a family. It was nice to actually have a car this weekend and be able to get around.
We decided to try and find a bakery that was open for breakfast (not the easiest task, since almost everything is closed on Sundays here!) and we were happy to find one where the waitress wasn’t completely fluent in English. Why is this something good you ask? Well, we can’t really practice our German if everyone speaks English!!! We had fun trying to decipher the menu and ended up ordering 3 boiled eggs that came with some bread and butter.
On our way back we saw a flower picking field so decided to stop and pick a couple of sunflowers. I love sunflowers. And I love that there are flower picking fields!
Basically there’s a sigh with the prices for the type of flowers with a little can attached to it where you put in the money for the flowers you take. There’s also some little knives there for you to cut the flowers with.
Headed back to our temporary home, we decided it was imperative that we buy a flower vase for our freshly picked flowers. So we stopped at the “mall” on base hoping to find one at the polish pottery store. We did!
Back at the hotel we made sandwiches with the bread we brought at the bakery for lunch.
Yes! Finally! We are HERE!!
Hours of driving, weeks of hotel hopping, horrible junk food, packing, unpacking, packing, last minute flat rate boxes filled with our overflow of stuff, doggy paper work back and forth, driving across 6 states, 7 hours at the air port with a mountain of bags and 2 giant pet kennels, and one 7 hour flight…..
WE. FREAKING. MADE ITTTTTTTTTT!!!! All 5 of us!!!
Surprisingly Bongo took it the worse, the big baby. Wouldn’t stop crying while we all waited at the airport.
Whooooooooo… So glad it’s done with!!!
First impressions of Germany?
It’s pretty cool here during the summer, but it can also be pretty hot!
Note, I’m scared of the winter now lol.
I have to get used to calling “towns” villages, but once you visit them they really do look like villages.
They actually do serve a lot of sausage (we’ve yet to eat at a German restaurant).
The houses are all gorgeous and cool looking.
A lot more woodsy that I pictured.
I want to learn German.
Learning German seems impossible to me. Words are too long. Not enough vowels.
Still want to learn German.
SO PET FRIENDLY. People take their dogs everywhere!
Yup… I think that covers all my first impressions… Here are a few photos from our exploring yesterday
My little Princess is 2 years old!!! Wow!!!
I can’t believe we almost missed it. Somewhere mixed into all the moving stress, my beautiful little baby girl turned 2 years old.
2 has been a hard age for us. Lue wont sit still at restaurants, she knows how to ask for all the things she shouldn’t have with the cutest most irresistible voice ever, she tells daddy to “stop it” when he’s crowding her with too many kisses, and goes limp on the floor when she doesn’t quite get what she’s been asking. Mommy’s patience seems to be pushed to the limit half the time and I find myself taking deeps breaths a lot more often. But goodness it’s hard not to feel completely in love with this child. Such an amazingly perfect mixture of baby cuteness and intriguing child like behaviors. Despite the difficulties, I know I will miss this age SO MUCH.
Ahh… My little princess… I wish you would never grow up…
Just stay like this forever <3
Ok, so what started out what sounded like a totally dorky idea turned out to be so much fun!
My good friend Kelly has a lot of connections with the city’s Conch Train Tour so she suggested we go on a ride as a play date. I thought it would be a great idea since Little Lue loves rides and this train definitely looked like a ride! It just so happens that it “rides” around town hehe.
Turns out that the tour was 90 minutes long (split into a 50 minute portion and another 2 smaller portions, divided by short stops). I was a tad nervous that this would test Little Lue’s attention span, but it actually worked out great! It was 90 minutes of sitting *mostly* in the same place and just taking in the sights. And the information about the history and architecture of Key West was really cool too.
It was really nice and the girls LOVED it. Little Lue was excited all morning because I kept telling her we were going on the choo-choo and she couldn’t wait to get on the train once we got to the “station”.
Little Lue and Miss O got to check out the engine and even pulled on it’s bell! They got some cute little engineer paper hats, but the little stinkers wouldn’t keep them on.
Oh! And at the little gift shop we got a cute little train whistle. I also grabbed some popcorn to maximize toddler compliancy for the remainder of the ride.
It was great. I kept joking with Kelly that I’d pay to ride it again… me in one car with my Kindle, and the hubby and Little Lue in another… he he he