Saturday, October 22, 2011


I just noticed that I am writing my 400th post as we speak.  Whoa.  That's a lot of writing.  That's an average of about one post every three days.  One post for every three days of the last three years of my life.  One post for every three days of the ordinary and extraordinary, the simple and complicated, and neat and messy pieces of this life.  Next Thursday is the National Day of Writing.  Twitter challenged people to tweet their response to the prompt: Why I Write.  

Why do I write?
I write to remember.  To live life twice and reflect on the simple and complex, the ordinary and extraordinary treasures of this life through a new lens.  I write to document this life of ours, to carve into stone the moments I hope to never forget.  And I write for the challenge of attempting to put into words the indescribable feelings that go along with parenthood.

Something tells me this is more than 140 characters...

This past weekend was just the type of weekend worth writing about.  It was an adventure, indeed, as Beau took advantage of a well-deserved 'guys weekend' at his friend, Andy's cabin up North, and gave me the opportunity to practice my Superwoman powers, juggling a job and a conference in Des Moines with a busy busy baby.  And since we know true Superheroes always have an ally, I relied on my mom and grandma to help while I traveled to Des Moines at 6 AM to present my first ever SOLO breakout presentation.  Beau took off Thursday night, Cruz had a sleepover with Grandma, and I woke up at the crack of dawn and watched the sun rise from my rear view mirror.

My presentation was one of the best professional experiences I've had to date.  I had a chance to reconnect with some old colleagues, form some wonderful new connections, and see the true power in dissemination.  It will be exciting to see where some of this goes, and I've already felt challenged and grown more as a high school teacher.  

Mom and Dad delivered my baby boy, along with a Dominoes pizza Friday night.  We ate pizza, slept in on Saturday morning (Cruz slept 'til 7:30), and spent a good part of the morning organizing Cruz's closet and packing away lots and lots of adorable summer clothes.  

Oh, and I forgot about our quick trip to Hy-Vee in our pajamas at 8:30 in the morning.  See, while Cruz was eating breakfast, I had the wild hair idea to try and see just how many 'projects' I could start while keeping my sanity with a one-year-old tearing into our child-proof-LESS house.  I just so happened to have everything needed for pumpkin bread, and thought the sound of a pumpkin-scented house sounded just about right.  That is, until I realized that while I did have all the ingredients, I never really bothered to check how much of each ingredient was needed.  

So, Cruz and I bundled up and took a trip to Hy-Vee for a cup of sugar.  We returned with a cup of sugar, ingredients to make butternut squash soup, and three pumpkins to add to our collection.  And so, with one cup of sugar, a little help from my The Band Perry Pandora playlist, and a lot of 'help' from Cruz, I managed to make four perfect loaves of soft and spongy pumpkin goodness.  

Saturday afternoon, I packed up Cruz and headed for a day at Mom and Dad's.  Being just a half hour away, you'd think we had days like this all the time, yet you'd be surprised.  An entire day with no purpose other than to play.  We went for walks up and down the same dead-end street I biked up and down as a child, visited a neighbor's pumpkin patch that included a pumpkin straight out of Cinderella, and spent some time with Great Grandma Henrichs at the nursing home.  And once again, we ate---THE WORLDS BEST BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP (recipe soon) and a slow-cooked pork loin.  Cruz and I had lots of fun, and I think Mom and Dad were grateful for the company, too.  

And Sunday, I did it on my own.  Made Cruz his oatmeal and built the 'Leaning Tower of Tobbles.'  Mixed a batch of chocolate chip cookies and let Cruz experiment with licking the beater.  Got a few groceries from Hy-Vee for the third time in two days, and prepared a welcome home dinner for Beau.  Chilled a bottle of spiced apple wine, set the table, and munched on 'candied' root veggies from The Pioneer Woman.  I even checked the TV Guide to make sure the Bears played at night.  And most of all, I played and snuggled, relaxed and refocused on the best thing about weekends.  Not the opportunity to get as much accomplished as possible, but the opportunity to slow down, let go, and just be a mama.  I did it, this weekend, 

and loved every minute of it.   

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