Monday, June 1, 2015

Lost

I used to want to be a writer.

I could make up stories on the spot. Ideas would just come to me, and I'd run with them. I could find blog topics without much racking of my brain. And my sentences weren't complete messes, for the most part.

And then I had kids. And with them, along with the love and sleepless nights and generalized craziness, I gained one more thing: Mommy Brain. I can no longer remember what I was going to say when I started a sentence, let alone any sort of story idea that may have been reasonable.

My previous writings, mainly fantasy-esque YA, now seem meaningless next to the daily struggles of motherhood. I may enjoy reading it for the escapism, but writing it feels pointless. What's the point of writing fiction when I need to focus on the education, socialization, and general upbringing of two small human beings?

But the truth is, I still have the itch. I still want to write, even though I have no idea what to write about anymore. I look at my past works and I think, "Where did I ever come up with that idea? Where did that story come from?" And I really don't know. I feel like that part of me has disappeared, along with my ability to form a coherent, complex sentence. I hope it comes back. I hope Mommy Brain is temporary.

God, I hope it comes back.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Back?

I haven't really missed blogging. But I have missed the blogging community. I rarely read blogs these days, and I even have trouble keeping up with people on Twitter, but there are so many great internet friends I have made through the blogging world. So maybe I'm back. I dunno. But I am coming back for the Readathon this Saturday, so there's that.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

My Best Reads of 2014

Here is a list of my favorite books from 2014. There's still a chance that I'll finish one or two more before the year is out, and I'll update this post if I feel any more need to be added. Let me know what your favorites were in the comments!


  • The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert
    • I love Ms. Gilbert and I think we would be great friends if we met in real life. Her writing is absolutely beautiful. This book is worth reading simply for the poetry of the language, but it has the added benefit of being a great story as well.
  • NurtureShock by Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman
    • This book taught me so much about how our minds work as we're growing up and what has been scientifically proven to be good methods for raising children - from babies through teenagers. I'll be using the information in this book for years to come.
  • Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by JK Rowling
    • A reread, obviously, and my favorite HP of all time.
  • Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter
    • It took a few tries for me to get into this one, but once I was in I couldn't let go. A wonderful, beautiful story.
  • Where'd You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple
    • Another reread. Actually, a re-listen. Check out the audio version of this book. It's brilliant.
  • Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin
    • I finally jumped on the bandwagon! So, so good. It definitely lives up to the hype.
  • Bossypants by Tina Fey
    • Another reread. And I will probably reread it again in 2015. It's that good.
  • Texts from Jane Eyre by Mallory Ortberg
    • So stinkin' funny. I literally laughed out loud throughout this book.
  • Landline by Rainbow Rowell
    • One of the few books I've needed to shout my awe across the twitterverse directly to the author. Can we all agree to just have Ms. Rowell write all the books from now on?
  • Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
    • Terrifying but mesmerizing. I couldn't stop reading, even if sometimes I wanted to.
  • Carry On, Warrior by Glennon Doyle Melton
    • One of the most important books I've read this year. Ms. Melton is an inspiration. I just want to curl up at her feet and have her pet me.
And there you have it. Turns out I've read a lot of good books this year!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

Set just before through twenty years after a terrible flu pandemic has wiped out 99% of the human race, this novel is captivating, entrancing, and frightening. Its plot is plausible and its characters multi-faceted and real. I couldn't put this book down, but I also had to stop reading at certain points just to make sure I was able to go to sleep that night.

Told from the perspective of multiple characters, and not in chronological order, this novel gives a full, real account of what it would be like to be alive during a time of utter devastation. What it would be like to know what the world is capable of, the technology and advancements, and then to see them all disappear in the blink of an eye. To suddenly find yourself in a world with a much reduced population and none of the modern advantages you're used to. How would you survive, assuming you had survived in the first place?

Absolutely captivating and utterly terrifying, I couldn't put this book down.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Last Minute Readathon



Call it impulse or peer pressure. Whichever it is, I've decided to sign up for Dewey's 24-Hour Readathon tomorrow (Saturday 4/26). I have no idea how I'm going to manage it with a 2 year old and a 1 month old, but I figure it'll be a pretty lax readathon this time. (This post really helped sway my mind and got me thinking I could actually participate, even if just in a small way.) At the very least, I'll be reading during nursing sessions. This might be the first readathon where I'm actually awake and reading after midnight! I'm not sure if I'll be able to update on the blog, so if you want to follow my progress, follow me on Twitter!

If you want to participate, there's still time to sign up!

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Currently #2

What I'm doing: Kind of listening to the Super Bowl, kind of listening to music, but mostly trying to decide whether or not to just go to bed.

Drinking: Decaffeinated green tea. Trying to be healthy. I'm finding it very difficult to stick to healthy habits, despite how much I really want to.

Reading: Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking by Susan Cain. It's not as gripping as I thought it would be, so I haven't gotten too far into it.



52 Small Changes Update: This week's goal is to "have an optimistic outlook." For a perpetual cynic, this is a tough one. I started to keep a gratitude journal...that lasted all of 2 days. I try to find the bright side in every situation, but it's usually after I've already declared that the situation is terrible. So I guess this is something I should work on, huh?

Anticipating: I've been researching and looking into making a bunch of freezer meals so I won't have to cook once this little one comes along. I remember how hard it was to plan and execute a meal when Emily was born, and I'm hoping this will make things easier. That being said, I'm finding it stressful to think about cooking multiple large meals and then storing them in a cramped freezer and hoping they'll still be good defrosted.

Celebrating: 12 years with my best friend. He's truly my better half, my favorite person, my rock, and the love of my life.

Parenting: This week has been better with sleep, at least marginally. I've been working really hard to make sure Em gets to bed on time so she sleeps a full 12 hours. Naps are still hit or miss. But I guess this is the same as what they were before the toddler bed, so there's not too much of a difference. Other than the sleeping, I'm amazed daily at her verbal progress. She's putting whole sentences together and telling us whole stories. It's just incredible to watch.

Pregnancy: I'm feeling the third trimester sluggishness. I'm extremely frustrated in the limitations of my body, because I have all the motivation and I want to get so much done. But I'm exhausted, sometimes as soon as I wake up it seems, and I can't seem to wrangle a 2-year-old and get even tasks I'm looking forward to done. For instance, this morning I wanted to make a couple of freezer meals but even after 8 hours of sleep I was beat, and Emily was acting as if she'd had Mountain Dew for breakfast. It was all I could do to keep her from bouncing off the walls without hurting either of us. By the time she settled down there was no way I was doing anything but laying on the couch. I know the lack of exercise is going to make my recovery worse, but I just can't do it. It seems that this is the year I need to keep telling myself, "This too shall pass."

Looking forward to: A playdate with some mom friends on Tuesday. Hopefully the impending snowstorm won't derail those plans. It's always nice to hang with moms with kids the same age as yours. We're all going through the same things around the same time. I can't explain how invaluable this is.

What are you doing? Tell me in the comments or find me on Twitter!

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Currently

I've seen this kind of post a few places in the blogosphere recently, but most recently by Kim at Sophisticated Dorkiness. Thanks for the great idea, Kim! I'm hoping it will get me blogging more often.

Where I am: Sitting on the loveseat at 7 pm. But very, very close to heading to bed (so. tired.).

Listening to: The sounds of domestic life: the dishwasher running, my husband on the phone with his dad, intermittent crying as Em tries to settle down to sleep.

Drinking: Strawberry infused water. I bought this...does anyone know how long I can leave the fruit in there if I keep the pitcher in the fridge?

Eating: Homemade doughnuts. It was way too snowy and windy this morning to go out for our semi-regular Sunday Morning Doughnuts, so we decided to make them ourselves. They were delicious, and I loved the family time (and watching Em eat a teaspoonful of flour - ha!). However, I think I'm going on a detox tomorrow and eating nothing but fruit (at least this sounds like a good idea). I've definitely had way too much sugar today.



Reading: NurtureShock by Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman. This book is blowing my mind. The things we thought we knew instinctively about raising children? All wrong.

Watching: I have fallen off the TV bandwagon. I haven't kept up with the popular shows for a couple of seasons now, mainly because I just don't have the attention span for it. Keith and I regularly watch Archer now that it's back on, but that's really it. Eventually I figure I'll catch up with our old favorites like Big Bang, How I Met Your Mother, and Parks and Rec. Probably when I'm feeding the new baby around the clock.

Resolutions: I'm also still reading 52 Small Changes. This week is all about moving more in your everyday life, not necessarily at the gym. I'm not really doing either. I've hit that point in pregnancy where I am tired all. the. time. And it's difficult to move. I'm doing my best just keeping up with Emily, and I figure I'll work on the exercise part after this baby is born and I'm cleared for activity. As for the first two weeks (drink more water and get more sleep) I'm doing pretty well with both. I have off days with the water consumption, but overall I'm drinking more than I used to. And the sleep...well I'm doing the best I can, all things considered.

Parenting: I'm still not happy about the toddler bed. I don't think Emily was ready, but what's done is done and now we have to deal with it. I let her pick between sleeping in her bed or the Pack 'n' Play for naptime and she almost always picks the PnP. Fine by me, at least she's napping again! We don't give her the option at bedtime, and she's doing better in that she stays in bed when we leave and through the night, but she is definitely not sleeping as much as she used to. Instead of falling back asleep or playing quietly in the morning, she's up immediately and wants me to come get her. This results in at least an hour less of sleep for her per night, which is definitely contributing to her disposition throughout the day. This next kid can stay in the crib until she's 3 for all I care.

Looking forward to: Warmer weather. I know it's all people can talk about lately, but seriously. I'm not ready for Polar Vortex Round 2. The snow doesn't bother me (actually I love it), but it's way too cold for a toddler and therefore way too cold for me. So my goal this week is to brave the cold, bundle Em up, and get the eff out of this house. Before we both go crazy. So I'm really, really looking forward to warmer weather and all the things we can do outside of these 4 walls.



I'd love to hear what you are currently up to! Leave a comment below, or find me on Twitter!