I’m feeling so fresh and so clean! Freedom!
Remember this post?
Yeah. I think stuff is starting to get all shook up.
Charlie starts a new job working for our beloved city! In just a few short weeks…it’s all changing.
A few of the things I have learned from my Mom.
1. There is always hope. You can always have it, choose it, cloak yourself in it, and act with it in mind.
2. Laugh and cry easily. And laugh hard even when there is no real good reason. The belly laughs shared by my Grandma and her sisters, my Mom and her Mom, and my Mom and me, are a legacy that deserves to be always passed down.
3. Give. Whenever you can and to whoever is in need.
4. Sing with children. Loudly, and often, because they don’t care how you sound only how you silly you are.
5. When in doubt; Prayer, Mr. Rogers, Nordstroms, or a good long phone chat with your Mom.
my mothers day was perfect.
My requests: a bath and a brunch with my Mom in attendance. Check. And two little tanned and giggly girls joined in on my bath, bonus!
Gifted to me by my everloving husband: two gorgeous big garden boxes built by him adorning my front yard.
Party Bonus: a decadent meal made for me while I slept in (beet/carrot/ginger juice, coffee, mint water, and fancy fruit filled oatmeal!) and a Happy Hour excursion with some other hardworking Mamas.
I came home from drinks with friends to this sight. What did I ever do to get it so good? Oh, my heart.
watermelon seeds in my bed.
long grass clippings in the yard, they make a perfect play nest for play babies.
rumply baby bed head.
sweaty neck rolls and fat tiny toes.
coconut oiled girls all covered in grass and sand and sun.
tan lines showing up in the gritty bath water.
big huge giant play-date turned parties turned deliriously (sleepy) happy babies.
coconut cake and a baking buddy.
a baby in my bed.
party dresses everyday.
long long hair and how good it feels when it’s all brushed out.
I am a mother. I spend my days thinking through my words, the weight of my words, the thoughts I have about myself. And putting those words onto my lovely and perfect daughters. I remind them their bodies are their own, and are wonderfully, perfectly made. I remind myself too. And it is sticking
I was dairy free for four months. I felt healthier, stronger, more whole than ever before. I am now back on dairy (for four days), and the sad reality is that the momentary bite of cheese isn’t worth the long term feelings. I’m back on the wagon.
I haven’t been running enough. And I miss it. I had a dream about running last night and tonight I will do on a dreamy run. I think I just might be a bit of a runner.
The sun has been shining. The computer has been collecting dust. And our feet are getting salt water sandals lines.
I feel cliche and stupid to say it. The words don’t seem like my own. But I can’t find a better way to describe it. God has been romancing me. With wind in my new outdoor umbrella, gifts I don’t deserve (like that umbrella), and little girls whose sparkly eyes enchant.
The PNW is having a moment of Summertime. And we are soaking it up.
Be back when the rains come.
Sooooo, I still ended up missing Fashion Week. I’m the lamest! But, Ever’s first birthday kind of knocked me down emotionally (when did my baby get so old??) and we have been/are crazy busy. I am really looking forward to June, when all will calm down and just family time will reign supreme. The summer days are coming.
But, I did get dressed!
Excuse my messy house, but… I got a tattoo! Right?! I’ll post more photos/back story soon. But for now, there’s the peek at my red and swollen, raw and scabby little tattoo. This dress is one of my faves, I picked it up when I was a million weeks pregnant and dreamt of the days of nipped in waists and summer dresses. And they have arrived. It was a clearance rack snag from Old Navy
Also, this is too funny not to post. Hair flip at it’s best.
Headband; local saturday market find
And one more tattoo picture for good measure.
Here’s to May going quick and June going slow!
9am: all the sounds changed. The midwife had only been her a few minutes, was setting up a few things, and it all changed. The fear about my babies position was gone and I alternated standing and sitting in my room through loud moans. My parents arrived, and the whirl wind began. I laid in my bed and found that I had progressed another cm (in the 20min she had been there) and was fully effaced and our baby had dropped very low. Eloisa wasn’t going any where. This baby was coming today! Charlie and my Dad moved the birth tub into my bedroom and began to fill it. My Mom played with Nolie in her room and they began to figure out the plans for the (what we thought would be, a long day ahead of them). The tub was filling. I was getting louder. This was, most definitely, It.
9:30am: My mom offered me a hug “can I hug you goodbye?” and I declined. Charlie knew it would be soon. The midwives all had knowing looks. And I looked desperately at Charlie and said “I don’t think I can do this for another six hours.”
9:45: I finally aquiest to our doula being called to arrive. Because this is the first time I think “I don’t know if I can do this.”
9:55: “I feel like I am pushing!” My body began to open up. And just… roar. It didn’t feel like pushing, it wasn’t guided or instructed. It was strange, and huge, and loud, and I couldn’t run away from it. And I just kept opening up and then having this blissful break.
10:05: ” I don’t think I can do this!”
“This is normal. This is how you get the baby out and into your ams. You ARE doing this. This is normal.”
10:06: “reach down! your baby is here!”
And everything was new again.
OH MY WORD. Ok, the true confession here is this- I haven’t looked at/read anything in my reader in…. six months? I have been behind. I think of a blog I am aching to read, but by the time I get to my computer, get a moment, I get distracted and lose it and then the babies up, the toddler needs a snack, the hubby is home, dinner needs making, you know the drill. BUT, in the last week my baby has started being a big kid and napping. Like, real life naps not on me. And it’s every bit as weird as I thought it would be.
But I am finding a groove. And tonight I found myself with time, impetus, and energy. So, I opened my reader and found something INCREDIBLE. It’s fashion week!!!! Okay, it’s half over and I am late to the party in a big way. So I am putting a placeholder collage of outfits out there and tomorrow I will get in the game in real time!
I can’t wait to spend tomorrow night checking out all your lady’s pretty looks! If you want to play along, or just get some outfit inspo from gorgeous women. Head on over to Delirious Rhapsody and check it out!
The outfits come from all over. . . but, nearly all of them are gifts from my parents. I’m a lucky lady.
I took a hiatus there. Big changes in my heart, working on getting sweet baby to nap in our bed (nursing to sleep is basically the best tool out there, seriously!), and finding our springtime groove.
After boudoir photos (read about them in the post below) everything in me changed. And I am taking that feeling and running with it. Being free of that beast and just living feels.so.good.
Three things I am super into right now; Braids, Juicing, Crafting ALL THE THINGS. I have some kind of spring time nesting bug and it’s seriously benefiting my home.
Have you seen all the roman blind DIY tutorials poking around on pintrest? We did some blinds about a year ago with some cute cheapy fabric but I wasn’t really loving it. I just put them up quick for Ever’s birth so I didn’t have to labor (hey homebirth!) in a fishbowl. So this re-covering job was a long time coming. I bought the fabric in February but had been putting off the project. Yesterday I finally went at it and the whole thing took maybe 30min and totally changed the look of our dining room. I’m in love!
I also have had this beautiful wood headboard, that Charlie made me, that has been begging to be crafted for quite some time (uh, like, a year+) so I finally got to town with that one and LOVE the result.
And some braids, because, yeah. Into it. My hair has gotten CRAZY long and I have been needing to shake it up a bit but I don’t have any crazy hair skills. So braids are a perfect go-to for me.
And, finally, do you juice? I inherited this awesome tank of a juicer from my Grandma. And I am in love with it. We have been juicing for a couple weeks now and I can feel a big difference in my energy level. I just do it in the morning (and sometimes some apple/carrot at night for dessert!) and it is incredible. I feel more energetic, and FULL for so long. Here are some pretty juice pictures.
And, two of my favorite juice concoctions.
Pink Detox (and, fair warning, beets and detox for real; whoa)
One large beet
One hunk of ginger (caution! spicy!)
One small apple
One big bunch of kale or three handfuls of spinach
One green apple
Three big carrots
One half lemon
Two handfuls Spinach
I walked into the studio and felt the sweat begin to bead on my forehead. I had watched girls disrobe and grin all day long. Gorgeous bodies that had carried babies, given birth at home or in a hospital, vaginally or surgically, bodies that had been forever changed. And bodies that were being celebrated not as mothers now, but as sexy women.
The photographer began to snap and I didn’t feel that calm that I watched wash over so many others. I didn’t feel that relaxed confidence that I had seen them all embrace. I felt more awkward, more fat, more sweaty. Then she stopped. Looked me square in the eye and said “don’t change a thing.”
Tiffany turned the camera around and I saw this.
And tears sprung to my eyes. Because I don’t want to change a thing. For the first time I can remember.
I have felt like not only would it be incorrect to think I am beautiful but that it would be wrong and prideful. That doing something that the soul purpose was to celebrate my body would be somehow selfish/gross. I couldn’t have been more wrong.
After receiving my photos I walk taller. Feel more love for my husband. And can own my womanhood free of motherhood with a wielding power that feels incredible. My body was forever changed by birth, and my eyes hold experiences and intense love that I never knew possible, my girls have changed me forever. But they haven’t ruined me. They have empowered me to realize how important it is to think I am gorgeous.
I regularly tell others that they are beautiful and I mean it. I daily tell my girls how beautiful, smart, strong, well made, and awesome they are; and I mean it. But to myself? I toss on whatever is on the floor, reject all the compliments Charlie lavish’s on me, and cast off confidence like it’s a prideful rag I can’t stand to put on.
Since this shoot I have been picking up confidence and robing myself in it. Taking True words about myself and allowing them to hang on me beautifully. I have been looking in the mirror and seeing what Charlie sees, what I should see, and not staring into the flaws with intensity. Because I was not designed with that in mind.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
(from Psalm 139)
I had these photos taken for a few reasons.
The biggest reasons was to have something beautiful to show my girls when they have a low moment about their body. The short legs they inherited from me, the small waist and ample hips, the tiny curvy feet, the cheeks that apple up with every smile. There is a photo of my Mom on a swing set in a mini skirt with big blond hair, little waist, and wide smile. It is sexy, gorgeous, and affirming. I look at it and see her but I also look at it and can see me and my sister, I can see where we came from and appreciate the pieces of me that I inherited and have been less than loving to. I want my girls to find themselves in these photos and be able to have that same recognition of inherited beauty that I get when I see my Mom’s sparkling eyes, little whoo nose, and short strong legs.
I left with a gift as big and bigger. I left with the ability to see myself through someone else’s eyes. To see a person who is wonderfully made. Who is strong. Confident. Gorgeous.
Because, guess what? It is more than okay to think you are gorgeous. It isn’t socially acceptable, women are taught to speak lame words about themselves, to not appreciate their bodies, to cut themselves and other women down for any perceived flaw. But the truth is different. The truth is that healthy and strong is sexy. That every woman has so much beauty in them. That stepping back from the mirror, stepping away from where your eyes are drawn (the purple stretch marks and loose belly, the wide hips or fat thighs, the arms that wag, or the back with rolls) and see that all of that, all of you, all of me, it’s pretty damn remarkable. Not just for it’s accomplishments, but just because. Because it’s more than good and more than right to look at yourself and think and say “yes, I just look gorgeous. All of me.” Because you do.
It isn’t a size or number. It isn’t “real women have curves.” because we are all real women and beautiful in exactly the skin we have on today. I know that boudoir photography isn’t for everyone. But if you even think for one moment that you would glean something from it, get off the fence and do it (but only with a GREAT photographer). I can’t tell you enough how incredibly altering, beautiful, affirming, and marriage improving this was. I’m sharing a couple of photos, but saving the rest for Charlie (and a few for my little girls when they are bigger girls). I wasn’t planning on blogging about this, because really? Who wants to see pictures of some random Mom in a corset? But the experience was so much more than wearing lingerie for a picture.
I walked into that shoot with a despicable beast on my back whispering “Your body is ruined. You aren’t worth this. These will be so gross. Why would Charlie ever want to see this?” and I walked out free of that voice, that shame, and those words. And it’s been three weeks and I am still walking free of that horrible little voice.
Because this body? It’s just gorgeous.
Make-up by Love Beauty
and hair, duh, no-heat-curls