Thoughts on blogging

April 30, 2007

I am flattered and honored to have been nominated for a Thinking Blogger Award (Thank you, Ann). Which means I am now faced with the difficult task of selecting five blogs that "make me think". This is not an easy job for me because I find myself getting sucked into blogland late at night on a regular basis where there is an overwhelming range of blogs available for selection!

It has also gotten me to think about why I blog and why I get sucked into blogland so easily. My fascination with blogging started when we were in Japan and just starting our adoption journey (thanks to
Jessica for the intro to blogging and the tutorials!) Before we even got our referral, I was obsessed with following the blogs of other adoptive families. It gave me hope that we would also one day get that life-changing phone call telling us that we had a daughter in Taiwan. I still feel a close connection to those families who shared their early adoption blogs and continue to enjoy new friendships with other bloggers.
So here are my top five reasons for blogging:

1) Connection to friends and family
2) Voyeurism...yes, I will admit to being a voyeur. Fascinated by what motivates people, what connects us and what differentiate us, soaking up stories, and seeking out glimpses of authenticity.
3) The duality of public and private. Intimacy and distance. A mix of private journals, public/reality show presentations, dialogue between reader and writer the comment section. Interactive journaling and documentation of current day....what an interesting sociological phenomena and how wonderful to be a part of it.
4) Community. It is interesting to see the relationships that form through blogging. Many of the blogs I follow are written by people I have never met and yet I feel as if I know them through their blogs and through their comments. We have also been lucky to actually meet some of our blogging friends (even stayed with some in Taiwan....thanks Rhonda and Steve). Also sort of a sad commentary on our modern society and our search for community on-line with strangers. We should probably stop blogging and start a campaign to interact more with our neighbors..but that is a topic for another post.
5) Outlet...for creativity, for venting, and for documenting ( I confess that my poor children don't have official baby books so I am hoping this will work for now!)

And here are five blogs that make me think in five very different ways (click on the green text to view the blog):

soule mama inspiring, creative, she reminds me of my mama and my childhood
3191 beautiful, dynamic and on-going visual blog between two photographers on opposite coasts documenting every morning (click on the months on the side to see more image groupings)
mark and susan's site, living in Taiwan, waiting to adopt, and documenting their life and travel in Asia
twice the rice Korean adult adoptee's blog, not always easy to read, but very honest, and always gives me something to think about
post secret a confessional blog session, hundreds of secrets shared in a very public way, fascinating, sad, funny, scary and very human

April Faces

April 27, 2007

Noah about to say something and Camille with her wispy hair in her face. April 2007

TV Land

I have been struck by the revival of evening game shows on TV. I just saw an ad for a new game show, some sort of Bingo game. It makes me think that we will soon see a return to variety shows like Laugh In and Hee Haw. It seems like American Idol is the modern version of Star Search. I wonder what the modern version of Hee Haw will be like? Doesn't it seem like that's got to be next? Or maybe it is already out there and we just don't watch enough to know.

And still on the topic of TV. I have not had a chance to see my favorite radio show "This American Life" on tv. I have mixed feelings about it. We have loved the radio version for a long time. I have had a crush on Ira Glass since I first heard his voice. But I somehow just don't know if I want to see it on tv. Part of the allure of the radio version is similar to reading a book. You can create the images in your mind. You can put faces on characters. You get swept up by the mood of the music. If you haven't heard the show before, visit their website and listen to some of the older shows. Each week there is a theme. Sometimes funny,sometimes provacative, sometimes sad, but alway authentic and intimate. It always leaves us with something to talk about, something to think about. I wonder if the tv show will be able to accomplish the same thing. If you have seen the tv version, please give me your review!

Roller Coaster Day

I should have read my horoscope yesterday. I started the morning off by smashing my finger in a door which really slowed down our morning routine...not easy to change diapers, pack a lunch, or put in contacts with a swollen bloody finger. But we did eventually make it out of the house. While Noah was at school, Camille and I attended a toddler class...singing, circle time, snack time, and play time.

Camille and I then joined Adam for lunch (we actually ended up eating in the car because Camille fell asleep). Funny how decadent it felt to sit in our mini-van having time to actually talk. This is the first time we have had lunch together during the week in a long time. Camille and I then headed back over the river to pick up Noah at school. After getting the car washed, we shared a snowcone. Camille decided to sit down on the ground and use her spoon to dig in the dirt. Before I knew it she was dumping a large quantity of sand, rocks, and leaves down the back of my pants. I ended up driving home with all of that stuff settled in my underwear...if this hasn't happened to you before believe me sitting in traffic with sand and leaves in your underwear is really not comfortable! Noah was very impressed by his little sister's monkey trick.

We spent the rest of the afternoon outside playing in our backyard which continues to be a muddy mess. Don't ask. I went inside to get towels and ended up falling in our living room so severely that I heard something crack in my foot and quickly realized I was in a lot of pain. I also realized that I was stuck inside while the kids were outside. I started calling for help and dragging myself to the door. This was turning into one of those dreaded parental situations where you are injured and alone with the kids. Noah eventually heard me yelling and came running into the house. My little mud covered hero quickly swung into action. He found my cell phone which was ofcourse not charged. He then went to the freezer and started piling frozen food on my swollen foot. He was also able to miraculously find the portable phone which always seems to be missing. During all of this Camille was very upset. Crying, crawling all over me, and saying "owie" over and over again. But this behavior quickly ended when she noticed the growing pile of frozen food on my foot. Since it was close to dinner time and since she seems to be hungry all of the time, she began trying desperately to open the bag of frozen peas and gnaw through the bag of frozen bread. Luckily Noah once again stepped into save the day by pulling out a bag of cookies to share with Camille. By the time Adam arrived home, it was quite a scene in our living room. Me under a mound of frozen food splayed on the floor surrounded by two kids hyped up on sugar and throwing Candyland game cards all over the place. Adam assessed the damage (seems to be a sprain and not a break), fed and put the kids to bed, and served me chocolate cake while we watched Grey's Anatomy. What a day!

Summer and Sophie

April 25, 2007

We had a great visit with Summer and Sophie (3months old!). We just wish they lived closer (hint, hint, hint!!!)

Blue Angels

April 22, 2007

Our thoughts and prayers are with the family and friends of the Blue Angel pilot who died yesterday in Beaufort. Our thoughts are also with all of the Blue Angel team and their families. A very sad day for us and for so many. And a reminder to spend every day doing something you love with those you love, just as this pilot did every day as a proud member of the Blue Angels.

True Love Stories

April 21, 2007

Today the most amazing package arrived in the mail...for those of you involved in the secret project THANK YOU! My wonderful husband has once again suprised and impressed me. I was thrilled to come home to a new washing machine and a new floor in our laundry room (which he worked on while the kids and I were in Cajun country), but it turns out he was also hard at work on a true treasure. Adam created a beautiful book with photos and stories from some our closest friends and family members. An entire book of how each of these special couples met...their stories in their own words, some funny, some poignant, and all very memorable. Truly a gift of love and a wonderful way to celebrate our relationship and those close to us. Thank you again to those who shared their stories with us. You inspire us with your relationships and bless us with your friendship.

Birthday thoughts

April 19, 2007

Yesterday was my birthday. It was a good day, but a quiet, thoughtful and sort of sad one. My mind and heart were heavy with thoughts of the Virgina Tech tragedy. It was a strong reminder of the Columbine shootings which took place in the same week as my birthday.At that time I was in college and I remember being so focused on the students. Imagining how scary, sad, and traumtizing it was for them. With the Virgina Tech events, I find myself at a different life stage and very focused on the parents. The shock, the grief, the anger, and the questions they are grappling with. It has also prompted me to think about the parents of young Marines and other service members who have also lost their children. Parents in Darfur. Parents of children in hospitals around the world at this very moment. I hug my children tight and I am grateful for every day I have with them. Noah was disappointed that I didn't have a big birthday party (instead he proudly announced to each table at our restaurant that it was my birthday), but I wasn't disappointed. It was the just right kind of birthday for this year...a reflective one, a small and quiet one with my children and my husband. We had tapioca pudding (made with love by Adam) instead of the standard birthday cake and I ended the day feeling grateful to be alive and grateful to have two beautiful healthy children, a loving husband, good friends and family all around the world. A birthday full of reminders. A reminder of the fragility of life, a reminder to live in the moment, and a reminder to reach out to others.

Boats, Kites, and Wagons

April 15, 2007

Our last day in Louisiana was a busy one. Noah and his Uncle Michael built boats which floated around the pond. They also attempted to fly a kite but the wind wasn't very cooperative. Later in the afternoon we took a long wagon ride/walk and ended the day with a traditional Morgan slide show. A good way to end our week on the Louisiana prairie.

Family Time in St.Martinville

We spent a sunny afternoon visiting with my grandparents and three of my aunts. It was fun to watch the kids playing in their back yard and reminded me of the good times I spent with my cousins when I was younger...hours of hide and seek, building "houses", picking mulberries, and making clover necklaces. Wonderful carefree spring afternoons. My cousin's son...isn't he cute?

Double Trouble, Double Fun

Double diapers, double car seats,double toddler tumbles, double the laughter...a week of fun with Camille and Clementine (my sister's daughter). The girls are only one month apart. It is great to see them together, but also exhausting. How do parents of multiples do it?!

Easter in the Swamp

April 11, 2007

A sunny, but chilly day in the swamp
Boiled crawfish followed by pecan pie (a perfect Cajun meal!)
Baby turtles, catfish, crawfish, and blue herons
Hunting for eggsNoah won the prize for the most eggs
A wonderful day with good friends and family


Noah's first experience with dying Easter eggs...lots of eggs, lots of mess, and lots of fun!

Dental Floss, Piggy Banks,and Elmo

I am happy to report that my first flights alone with both kids went well thanks to dental floss (perfect for 17 month old hands to unwind),a piggy bank to fill up with pennies (thanks to Nana for that suggestion), new toys (airplanes for Noah and a new Elmo for Camille), puppets made out of airplane vomit bags, and lots and lots of snacks! We are now enjoying our week in Louisiana and hoping that our return flights go as smoothly.

Happy Anniversary!

April 5, 2007

Seven years ago on April 6th we were married in New Orleans. We were surrounded by close friends and family. A beautiful spring evening in the courtyard of an old New Orleans home. My mom made my wedding dress and my bouquet was filled with roses and fresh rosemary (I always have rosemary growing in my garden because it reminds me of our wedding). Adam looking so handsome in his uniform cut the cake with his Naval Academy sword. We all devoured Nancy's amazing chocolate hazlenut cake. And two days later we had a huge Cajun celebration on the prairie where my parents now have their home. A full day of sunshine, live music, dancing, good food, fields full of spring growth, lots of love, laughter, and celebrating. We were truly blessed to have such a wonderful start to our marrigae and continue to be blessed with a marriage full of love, laughter, and devotion.

Spring Break Preschooler Style

April 4, 2007

Noah is off from school this week so we have been trying to keep busy and have fun! Sunday we had a great time at the local international festival. We enjoyed watching the dancers at the Chinese tent. And the highlight for Noah was the cotton candy purchased from the Polish tent...Polish sausage and cotton candy was what they were selling, pretty weird combo!?! Was cotton candy invented in Poland? On Monday we spent the morning at a very cool park complete with a small city...the kids rode bikes through a village with streets, traffic lights, sidewalks, and blocks with stores. There was also a very interesting fire house museum. Noah and his friend Jake got a kick out of checking out all of the different fire engines.

And today we had a GREAT day at the zoo. I really love our local zoo..beautiful gardens, great set up for the animals and the visitors, and today's highlight was the splash park with huge foam sea creatures. We went with our Taiwanese friends. Jonathan is six days older than Camille and it is so much fun to seem them interacting together.

Tomorrow we are going to see a play made from the book "Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day" (remember that kid's book?). And on Saturday we are flying to Cajun country to spend time with family and friends (and hopefully eat some crawfish, too!).

Happy Passover!

Here are the kids dressed up for Seder. We celebrated the first night of Passover by attending the congregational Seder. It brought back memories of prior Seders in New Orleans, Bremerton, San Francisco, Lafayette, and Okinawa. Our new congregation is a very large one and we still don't know that many people but we enjoyed sitting at the table with the Assistant Rabbi and her family. Her son and Noah attend pre-school together so they always enjoy spending time together at synagogue functions but it also means we spend a lot of time wrangling them. We made it through most of the Seder and meal, but ended up having to leave when both kids were in meltdown mode. We took them out a back door to calm down and ended up getting locked out...figured that was a message from God telling us to bring them home and put them to bed!

April Showers

April 3, 2007

Well when it rains, it pours around here. Our weather has been fabulous but our luck as homeowners continues to be poor. This past weekend the following appliances have suddenly stopped working: our washing machine, vacuum cleaner, dvd player, and computer! I am starting to wonder if we are the victims of some terrible April Fool's trick or if we have angered the gods of appliances or perhaps we are in some weird vortex. And ofcourse, none of these items are cheap to repair or replace. So hopefully the old saying is true April showers bring May flowers and perhaps we will win the lottery or at least get some good deals on new appliances!

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