play it again: refocusing a joyful perspective

Originally published December 15, 2010 at Central Valley Moms for Jodie, my dancer and future Rockette and because it’s December:

I know that I am not alone in saying that this has been a pretty tough holiday season…at least in the materialistic sense. Holidays under the Big Top typically aren’t object-oriented, but this year is even less so as we decided to just focus on the youngest of the circus clowns.  I dismally expected that there would be loud protests but, as they often do, my clowns have surprised me with their grace.

Now how in the world did I get so lucky to have such wonderful kids? I have no idea. I mean I am their mom. But when they say something like this, I am reminded of what blessings they all are. So begins my season of giving thanks for what I have.

I have a job. I have a pretty awesome job in the sense that I get to do what I love most, caring for sick, tiny babies and their families. A lot of people, especially all over the Central Valley, aren’t so lucky. My darling husband is one of them having been unemployed for just over two years now. Not a day goes by where I don’t not appreciate my good fortune.

I have a warm and cozy home. Sure month to month we stress and worry about paying that mortgage but we still have that home…at least for now. I remind myself of this fact as our lender sends us even more paperwork to fill out for the loan modification that we applied for several months ago. The federal government’s Making Homes Affordable Program seems like a great idea if only more of us who qualify would be allowed to take advantage of it…I’m just saying and judging just a little since our lender was fortunate enough to be bailed out by the Feds (us) twice. So while we work and wait and hope and pray for a little grace, I am thankful for the Big Top.

I am thankful for the warmth and glow that this holiday brings that somehow manages to melt the hardest, coldest, most bitter of hearts…like mine. I’m thankful for Santa Claus, Christmas trees, Sugar Plum Fairies and the Radio City Music Hall Rockettes. I was so fortunate to see the Rockettes Christmas Spectacular at the Save Mart Center, with my youngest daughter, the tiny dancer who has visions of dancing with the Rockettes some day dancing in her head. What an amazing show it was! If I didn’t have my holiday joy on before, I certainly did during the show. The music, the dancing, the warm fuzzies and even the joy and love shared in the audience was a perfect dose of holiday cheer for me.

And the cherry on top…my tiny dancer got to meet and chat with two of the Rockettes.

They took one look at Jodie and said, “You must be a dancer. You could dance with us!” Jodie totally squeed inside at that moment. I do believe that Santa, or perhaps a Sugar Plum Fairy  made one tiny dancer’s holiday dreams come true.

As for me, well, in spite of the fact that I am a fairly tall and trim person, I felt pretty short, short-limbed and a little chubby standing next to these three teeny-tiny, long legged dancers. They all assured me that it is because I didn’t bevel!

That’s it, exactly!

Merry Christmas everyone! May you, like me, find and treasure the joy in the simplest and most beautiful of blessings and grace this holiday season.


thank goodness for Facebook!

Were it not for Facebook I would have never known that THIS Saturday is my wedding anniversary!


Oh, and May 10 was John Scalzi‘s birthday…Whatever! Just kidding. Happy belated birthday, John.

But back to Facebook helping me out…yes, Saturday is our wedding anniversary…our 28th to be exact. But I really didn’t need Facebook to tell me that. Thank goodness!

in celebration of gender confusion

Daniel's favorite mani, circa 2006

Over at Central Valley Moms today, I am talking about the horrible news about how nail polish leads to blatant propaganda pushing the celebration of gender-confused boys wanting to dress and act like girls and is a growing trend, seeping into mainstream culture.

I know!


Of course this is just another reason why my butt print is permanently embedded on the Bad Mommy bench.


yes, I am that shallow sometimes

So I have been exploring the newly made-over Central Valley Moms site…she’s hot, you have to check it out!…anyway, I was checking out this.

The data is compelling, VERY compelling, especially for someone like me who is in the biz. More than one is born every minute and because of the increase in inductions and c=sections of late, pre-term infants born between 34-37 weeks under the pretense that they will be just fine or because the mother is “tired of being pregnant” or trying to schedule her happy event to work into her life or the OB/mid-wife is going on vacation or has weekend plans or…


I am pretty much guaranteed job security, aren’t I? It’s all pretty good for me because these clowns of mine are expensive and our mortgage lender only cares that we keep on paying the mortgage.

Still these statistics are very compelling and might give one pause to consider the impact of these little ones who are born every minute on…everything. So I am looking at this:

I’m reading through the data very carefully…

because I am in the biz…you know?

Yes, I am studying this data and comparing it to data I have reviewed and examined at recent nursing conferences in the last year...

It’s interesting…

very interesting…


scroll down…


some more please…

a little more…

you need to keep scrolling down…

some more…

just a little bit more…

keep scrolling down…

you are almost there…

keep going…





Oh. Em. Gee!!!!

Look at this statistic!!

How cool is that?

FIVE-PERCENT of the population here in the US!!

I am THAT rare…THAT special…and yes, THAT shallow.

But back to these stats…I’m grateful for the job security and all. Still I would like to see next year be different, with far better numbers.

And here is where I shamelessly plug my plan to run for the babies…the babies I love…the babies like my own amazing, no-longer-so-little man…the babies I care for.

The world CERTAINLY needs more redheads but we DEFINITELY need more babies to have the best possible start in life that we can offer.

kinda, sorta Wordless Wednesday: off to school

Spring Break is over! It’s back to school for the clowns. When Miss Ruby pulled up in the yellow bus, Daniel took off running to head back to school. Who can blame him surrounded by nothing but sick people for his Spring Break.

Over at Central Valley Moms today, I am talking about the juggling that it takes to get these clowns of mine back to school after a ten day break.