blogtography 2014 edition

What a year, really! Ups and downs, ins and outs, milestones, laughter, tears, fears, celebrations, goodbyes and lots and lots of pictures to remember the memories made along the way. Here are fourteen because it was 2014.

car rides, spicy food and serious conversations

stopping the motion

homework help

promping v. 2014

because everyone was personally victimized by Regina George

I’m with you kid, let’s go

searching the crowd

for the daddy I love

all we really need to know we learned at dance competitions

inclusion, exclusion, privacy, the 1st day of school, and, sigh, picking the battles

life as the plumber’s wife

are you that blogger?

photo dump: walkabout edition

Santa nails it

Just fourteen moments of 2014 captured and blogged. Let’s not even begin to discuss how hard it was for me to choose.

And one more…

Early Sunday morning Buster said goodbye crossing over the Rainbow Bridge peacefully in his sleep. He was a good dog, a very good dog even if he was notoriously camera shy literally walking away almost every time I came around with my camera.. For 12 years he was a big brother to Daniel teasing and playing with Daniel in the way that only brothers do. He was a loyal companion to Bill. A playmate for Zoë. A fierce protector for us all guarding against every UPS or Fed Ex delivery truck and short bus that stopped at The Big Top. Buster’s passing indeed cast a pall over our family circus. He is missed and will be missed always and forever.

Okay, wipe your tears. Go hug your fur babies, your babies, family, friends and lovers. Happy New Year to us all! May 2015 be filled with happiness, kindness, love and much more laughter than tears.

 

 

 

the most drama of the season

Zelda is willing to wear this humiliation that is her jingle bells collar because of the laser pointer and greeens and catnip that were also in her Christmas stocking.

Until she became tired and annoyed with it and tried to rub it off.

And that, boys and girls, was literally the most holiday drama/trauma that happened during The Big Top Christmas 2014.

I’ll take it!

I wish that I had taken more pictures. I should have. I didn’t. I might have to turn in my mamarazzi card for that big holiday fail. I could say that I was just too busy taking in the sights and sounds around me. That’s partly the truth…mostly…when I wasn’t trying to stay awake after working all night that is exactly what I was doing.

But I did manage to capture this little bit of wonderful.

Finally, the boy has some of Ellen’s underwear!

Santa nails it

Yes, it’s true that my nearly thirteen year old son believes still. It’s a fact that everyone, LOVES because…isn’t that the sweetest thing? Of course everyone hasn’t seen his letter and wish list to Santa.

Y’all are lucky!

Just focus on the sweetness of his innocent belief in Christmas magic. I’ll stress about that wish list…of which I had to tell him to STOP adding to. So to distract him, we visit the Big Guy in Red at Dell Osso Farms. Pro tip: this is THE BEST Santa in the Central Valley…no bells and whistles and spaceships and light sabers, no massive line with an endless wait time. Of course, today is Christmas Eve so it is too late for you all this year. But next year…

This guy, he’s the real deal with the twinkling eyes and the merry, rosy cheeks. He’s very photogenic too. He LOVES to talk to the kids and he has the time too because there isn’t the massively long lines with endless wait times. After Daniel carefully explained everything on his wish list, including where to buy and retail price, Santa made that observation that Daniel’s wish list is a very impressive wish list.

Indeed.

Do you like surprises, Daniel?

Sometimes.

Well, Daniel, I think that I want to surprise you this year. I am certain that you will love it come Christmas morning.

And with that, Daniel smiled his biggest, happiest brace-faced smile and warmly hugged his jolly friend in red.

That will do Santa.

That will do.

I won’t grow up…

There has to be a reason, in spite of my dotage, my knees that loudly crunch as I run up and down the stairs of The Big Top, the lines on my face and the gray that Hollie so artfully covers for me, why I seem to know the music and lyrics of practically every popular (and not so mainstream) artists these days. I could say that it is because I LOVE music, almost all music. It’s true. But, truth be told I blame the kids.

I do.

These dang kids!

Then again, I wouldn’t trade the chance to go to the Triple Ho Show with this girl.

Or stand for a few hours in the rain at the back stage door with the hopes of catching a glimpse of someone.

Or someone’s dog, out for a quick walk and pee, accompanied by a member of someone’s entourage.

Cute dog though.

Okay, truth be told, I didn’t get the standing in the rain backstage fan-girl/fan-boy experience but she invited me and introduced me to her friends and fan-girl/fan-boy community.

Then there were moments like this.

And the music.

Charli XCX

Um, me. Tweeting #TripleHoShow.. During the show. Quite a few of my tweets and pictures ended up on the big screen for everyone in the SAP Center to see.

Jessie J

Nick Jonas

Pete Wentz

Demi Lovato

And the latest and greatest, exciting “new” boy band, 5 Seconds of Summer…5SOS to the fans. Except they aren’t necessarily the wholesome, boy band some might think they are. I imagined some parents attending the show with their young 5SOS fans realized that for the first time last night.

Parents, listen to the lyrics…check them out on social media…just saying.

Me, I like the boys from Down Under. I hear their music here under The Big Top a lot. They remind me of a young Green Day band off their ADHD meds. I’m kind of partial to their Mrs. All-American but I also love their covers of the Romantics’ What I Like About You and Green Day’s American Idiot.

Honestly, I can’t imagine a better way to spend a rainy day and evening in December with one of my kids.

Priceless!

photo dump: the thankful edition

It’s Thanksgiving Day so I’m going to give thanks, as one should on Thanksgiving Day…and every other day.

For Thing 1 and Thing 2, generously provided by my employer and a co-worker who has no use for the 12 pound turkey they handed him as we left work early in the morning last week. Yes, I named them, as I do every year. Deal with it! Meanwhile, Thing 1 and Thing 2 are currently soaking in an icy cold, brine-y bath waiting to be properly roasted.

For bringing sexy back in the way that only Personal Protective Equipment can. This look is hot. No. It really is hot.

The perfect pick-me-up after running 4 miles before you work your 4th 12 hour night shift in a week. Hurray for Snickers and for running and for a busy, busy full NICU which means work!

For kick-ass looking compression socks to wear after running a few miles before working hard on your feet for 12 hours all night long. Oh, and, give thanks for the break relief RN who makes the moment where you get to put your feet up for 20 minutes.

Be thankful for the 2 hour nap you had after working all night before you take the time to drive your favorite Princess 125 miles in the rain and wind and fog across a couple bridges during drive time Bay Area traffic so that she can attend two hours of Princess training.

It’s totally worth it when she sends you this picture of her being fitted for the wig of her favorite princess, one of a few who she will be portraying. Yes, you can almost hear her squeeing with delight from the only open cafe in the area where you sat and waited during those two hours. Worth it. Totally. So was her telling you how much she loved you and was glad you were driving as you drove across the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge in the 0.25 mile visibility fog.

This card with this name on it which we waited for for 12 years because no matter what the social workers tell you, it isn’t as easy as it should be to get your child’s social security card with his name on it after the adoption is finalized because government agencies can be so frustratingly dumb sometimes. But not Maria at the Manteca Social Security Administration office. Sure it took her several hours to figure a way around the bureaucratic walls but she did it because, as she humbly put it, “there’s always a way around walls.”

Remembering when you said you couldn’t wait for your kid to outgrow his shoes and clothes before they wear out when you see that the shoes that you just got him are too small. Human Growth Hormones, we are so thankful especially when you see your son’s height and weight plotted at <1%ile on the growth chart because look at that, the kid is almost finally plotting on the normal growth chart!

Pretty scarves and jewelry and makeup and clothes that flatter what your mama gave you, no matter what your age is, that you wear for no other reason than because you want to; which has nothing to do with completely unwanted attention from any stranger who imagines that you got all dressed up because you want their attention.

Yeah.

No.

Taking the time to catch part 3 of the 4 part Hunger Games Trilogy with this child of yours because that is what the two of you do together after the husbands and kids are asleep.

Running this for the third holiday season because otherwise you might just murder someone…or at least given them a really big hug with your hands around their neck because it is the holidays and because you like to eat and to drink because it is the holidays and because you like to run…a lot.

Moments of relaxation and the cat who makes you sit still and enjoy them. I plan to do just that today after I run a 10K and get Thing 1 and Thing 2 into the oven.

Happy Thanksgiving y’all!