Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Dear Lord, give me patience.

Patience is such a precious thing. Really. True patience is so hard to find! It was always one of those things I couldn't really understand as a child. I would read some book of morals that listed patience as a virtue, and always be a little puzzled by the sentiment. Now, as an adult, I can see the reason for instilling it early. We adults can see all of those little things just dangling a ways down the road, and we have to wait. Argh! 


the quality of being patientas the bearing of provocation, annoyance, misfortune, or pain, withoutcomplaint, loss of temper, irritation, or the like.
an ability or willingness to suppress restlessness or annoyance when confronted with delay: to havepatience with a slow learner.
quiet, steady perseverance; even-tempered care; diligence: to work with patience.

So, here I am trying to remind myself that patience is a virtue. That my ability to contain my frustrations and channel my energies productively is exactly what those books taught me. Does that make me want to wait? Heck no! But here we are. Waiting, fingers crossed, hoping, hoping, hoping. 

This post is really more for me than for my readers. I know, I'm sorry. But I do need to tell myself that patience is possible, that being anxious isn't really going to change my current situation. 

And now I'm going to take a shower. 

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Gut Check

(Post note: Lots of links here, people. Check them out)
I read too much. When I was younger, it was a lot of sci-fi and fantasy books. Now, it's articles in medical websites. I have been trying to figure out a way to live healthier in this screwy world. Easy? NO, IT'S NOT. On top of our food being poisoned with chemicals and out air being polluted, even the plates we eat off of and the water we drink has things that sap the life out of us. So, if we want to make it to 60 without cancer/heart attack/some strange illness doctors can't explain, we have to do better. I'm not saying I'm a doctor. I'm not saying I'm right. I'm just saying that I consider my body an ongoing project, and my theory is that I am constantly changing and constantly in need to adjustment. So I'm listening and adjusting.

I have also been extremely interested in the recent outpouring of news from doctors and scientists about the gut-brain connection. I have always felt that mental health is so much more than just "how you feel" about life and your surroundings. I personally feel that Americans are some of the most poisoned people in the world, and we also suffer from a ridiculously high number of mental health conditions. Look them up. Look at how children are being put on anti-depressants. Look at what endocrine disruptors are, and how they effect us. Look at how doctors have done a great job of making antibiotics our first choice for the common cold, and have created super bugs in their wake. We take antibiotics for things like ear infections, and we have no fucking clue what it does to us, long term. We think that because the fever is gone and the symptoms disappear means we are healthy again. Wrong, people. So wrong.

So when articles starting to trickling onto mainstream media about how we are destroying our gut flora and how that might link to obesity, mental health, skin condition, autism, depression, etc, I got excited. It's really exciting. Do I think that there is an easy cure? Hell no. But I feel optimistic because it means that things could get better for me and mine. I'm not looking to heal humanity. That's their deal. If you think you are going to live long and prosper off of Baconators and Rock Star, be my guest. I'm not going to bet on you at the races, though. But me? Maybe I can heal myself. Maybe I can be a more vibrant version of myself if I keep listening and adjusting. We'll see. I'm very excited.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013


Oh, this is a good time. Here we are, hanging in the suspended time between seasons. Summer is gone, truly, but fall? Fall has not yet arrived. Fall is just there, beyond the horizon. It is a creeper, a slow decent upon us. 

And so we hang. Can you feel it? There is a coolness in the air. The trees hold so still, as if they were holding their breath. They have a sort of faded green about them, as though they are tired of their outfit, and have let it get worn as an excuse to get something new. They are waiting. The grass, in the cooler air, puts on a burst of green, thankful for the respite from the heat, but I think they know it's not for long. 

The sun is choosing to leave the party sooner every night. He has a good excuse. Just last night I mistook 8 pm for 9 pm. I shook Hubby and said "Winter is coming!" but only half jokingly. I have my squirrel-itis coming on. 

Every year, I get squirrel anxiety. You've seen them out of the corner of your eye. They are racing around, collecting every thing edible. They are frantic, knowing that all warm things can come to an end, and their summer is doing just that. I get the urge to buy massive quantities of food and hide it somewhere safe. I want to can, to bake, to clean, to prepare. To make my home weather-proof, to find firewood. I don't even have a wood stove, but by golly, I want a big row of dried wood. 

And I must restrain myself. I don't have the room for 50 lb bags of flour. I don't really need 20 braids of garlic. I don't need to buy a chainsaw to get a wood pile figured out. Maybe someday. Maybe I'll have the time, space, and need for all of these things. Maybe that's why I have this feeling. Maybe it will come in handy someday. 

Winter is coming. 

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Country Roads

Man, I miss the mountains. Well, I should be more specific. I miss MY mountains. I live right next to a big heap of mountains, but as a friend described them recently, they are ugly. To other, they are THEIR mountains. To me, they are ugly. The are dry and strange, jutting out of the valley abruptly, almost as if you can see their yearning for the lake that dried up long ago, the waters that used to lap at their feet.

And so I miss my mountains. The ones that are familiar, the ones that I know the peaks, and where the sun comes up over them, and how the fall dapples their shoulders in fire colors. The mountains where the aspens are so thick that they knock together in the wind, creating a eerie sound that I love. The places where it never gets too hot, and always hints of being very cold sometime soon.

I was uprooted as a teen from the small town farm life I knew. I was moved to these mountains. Why am I so surprised to be missing them so much?? Why do I question my desire to go home to them so much? Why does my age group cling to this strange idea of independence by moving far from what you hold holy? I don't know. I don't even know why I felt such an urge to run away from my mountains for so long. Maybe reckless youth? Maybe a restless heart? I miss those country roads. Take me home. Shoulda been home yesterday.

This song is an eternal favorite. While I know I'm not sticking to tradition with using John Denver's voice, this girl sings it the way MY heart sings it. Get past her funny accented intro, and listen to her sweet version of Country Roads by John Denver.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

A day in the life of a......blurgh.

I've been a terrible blogger, but what's new? Well, here we go:

-I've been eating books whole. I read His Majesty's Dragon, by Naomi Novik, then The Long Earth by Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter, then Throne of Jade, also by Novik, and now I'm on Black Powder War, her third book. I'm looking forward to a few more books this week. Dragons and sci fi. I'm such a nerd and I love paperbacks...because they are easier to hold in bed.

-I keep telling myself to crochet something, and then I get sidetracked. So frustrating. I want to have something cute to add to my fall clothes, but at the moment, I have no time. Pooo.

-I have been listening to French music and lots of Wailin' Jennys. Oh, and the occasional teen pop music, because I might never grow up. The crush phase music can be so fun. So shallow, but so easy to sing along with.

-I am realizing that my son is a tiny introvert. He is a Virgo, and he is starting to be a textbook little Virgin. He has funny little habits, which can be hard to deal with, but if I know the right way to address them, he is a quiet, helpful little man. I know a lot of people don't put stock in astrological signs, but if you look into it for your child, you can find a lot of helpful hints that assist in giving them more advantages in your relationship with them. I knew from birth that Leif will have a hard time finding foods that agree with him. I have always taken the time to let him eat on his schedule. I have tried to push him and have fallen back in my campaign because I forgot who he is. Remembering their type helps encourage their strengths, and makes their struggles easier to overcome.

If you want to know more about your child's sun sign, try this site. Linda Goodman is my favorite. She really touches on some interesting points about children. Just scroll down to the child section of each sign.

Other strange facts about me:
-I groomed about 5 lbs off my dog Murphy's butt the other day. SO HAIRY.
-I have been using an app to track my vitamin intake. I am up to 15 days without forgetting!! WOOT.
-I have fallen in love with the Sherlock show. WHY ISN'T THERE MORE???
-I am already having winter anxiety. I need to live somewhere that doesn't involve 6' snow banks. NO FUN.

I need to take on the day!! Bye, bye, bye.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Because this is normal, right??

I am suffering from a classic case of mom-itis. I am tired. I am always in need of an extra 12 hrs in a day to accomplish everything I need to. I am haunted by the sound of my almost 2 yr old yelling, "mama-mama-mama-mama-mama!!!' at the crack of dawn EVERY SINGLE DAMN DAY. But I am also happy. I am making lots of little good changes with my life. Sometimes it feels slower than a snail's pace, but it's happening. We are slowly pulling ourselves up by our ratty bootstraps. Maybe I'll get new bootstraps soon. And maybe some new socks as well.

But enough of being long-winded and wordy. Let's just have a story, shall we?

Our kitten, scoundrel Miloh, disappeared a week ago. No sign of him. We were heart broken. We cried. We knocked doors, we hung signs, we called him at all hours, wishing he would come trotting up to us, chirping and meowling. No such luck. So we checked shelters and started to resign ourselves to never seeing our lovely cat again. We felt like our home was missing a little, rambunctious element that we couldn't find anywhere else.

I spent all of my time checking lost and found ads. And then, a week later, I found him. My heart almost fell out of my mouth. I was so surprised to see him. He has such a distinct facial look that I knew him instantly. I immediately sent hubby a blast of texts, pictures and lots of !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And he sent lots of ?!?!?! and !!!!! right back. Our reason for all the !!!! was because our cat turned up 44 miles away from our little home.

Our little cat had been found on the second floor of an apartment complex in Orem, Utah. There is no way he could have walked there. Our suspicion is that he somehow was picked up and dumped. That doesn't make us feel very good about someone out there, but we are so grateful for the man who found him. I went to pick him up and he was so happy to see us! Leif was ecstatic. His MiMo was home! So now we have our whole family again, and we feel so much better. Our feet are being attacked, our yogurt is being licked, and we have our sweet smelling kitten home. It's just too bad he still is so bloody hyper. Ha. Glad to have you back, wee Mimes.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Robin's May be Right

I am on Instagram. You can find me here: khippor. My sisters turned me onto it a while back. I have fallen head over heels for it, and love it deeply. I have connected with some wonderful people all around the world, and that fact alone makes it worth it to me. I also love to see little windows into lives. They can be so beautiful.

I follow a woman named Robin May. She met her love on Instagram, and they were just recently married. Here is here feed, in case you want to see her story: Robinmay. She posted a picture the other day with this caption:

"Being a wife is the best thing in my world, but it doesn't come naturally to me. I can be selfish. Impetuous. Kind of a know-it-all. I get bored easily, despise repetition, and sometimes would rather hide from life than deal with its messes. Finding the right person doesn't melt that all away. In fact, it occasionally highlights it. There's nowhere to run when you're joined for life; all your shadowy corners get lit up by love! But the right person doesn't push buttons -- at least not on purpose, and not very often. And they don't call you names or make you hurt and then tell you that you deserve it. If you're with the wrong person -- and your gut will tell you so -- my advice is to walk bravely away when you're ready, and find the right one. In the meantime, you will have the most glorious company: YOU."

I loved this. I needed this. It helped me with my own feelings of inadequacies right now. I can be so moody. I can be jealous, frustrated, closed off. I can be haughty. But I do have the right person for me. And the thing is, he can be the same way. We can go for days with things that need to be said. We can have issues sitting right there on the table between us, right next to the coffee cups and plates of eggs. Being a wife is hard. Being a human is hard! Sometimes I feel like we spend so much time trying to get better that in our planning and our preparation, we get tired and let it all collapse. 

So for today, I am rejoycing. I have reason to say I feel like I am a better wife today. I have reasons to say that while there are times I am not at my best, I am also better than I was before. I made a choice a long time ago to walk bravely and find the right one. That deserves the attention, the patience, the love. My gut tells me so. 

Happy Day to Do Whatever You Want.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Dear Garrison Keillor-

God, it would be cool if you read this. I just saw you yesterday at the Red Butte Gardens, in Salt Lake City for the Radio Romance Tour. My 23 mo old son and I were front row, off to your left. I wore a floral skirt and my son's plaid shirt matched his little blue Crocs. He was apprehensive of all the people at first, but then took to dancing like a whirling dervish later, to the sounds of the band and your voice. I couldn't have been happier.

I must admit that seeing you was a bucket list item. You were way above seeing Yellowstone or the Eiffel Tower. You are, however, on level with riding a Lipizzaner horse or having a baby. That's pretty good, so you can feel special. Seeing you was like seeing an old friend that I have longed to share things with, like how I feel about poems or what books make my heart sing. I have to say that while I am now able to cross of an item off my list, I was left slightly sad. My reason is this: I wanted you all to myself.

I wanted to tell you things. I wanted to tell you that in my backpack I had a very well worn copy of Good Poems for Hard Times. That I would have given a kidney for you to sign it, because it's pages have kept me alive in times when the darkness seemed to eat me alive. I wanted to tell you that I have all of your books. I have a shelf on my bookcase that just your books, just your name on all the spines. I wanted to tell you that my parents gave me a boxed set you Lake Wobegon tapes as a child, and I listened to them all the time, and when I lost them in a move, I was crushed. I wanted to tell you that when I saw your picture for the first time, I was surprised. I pictured you a tall, extremely handsome Norwegian. I was mildly crestfallen that you were grizzled, unshaven, and slightly pug-like. But I still loved your face and your voice. Some people like to meditate. I like to go to Lake Wobegon.

I brought my son with me because someday, I would like to look back and say, "You don't remember it, but I took you to see Garrison Keillor, before you were two. You loved it. You sat and hugged my arms and watched his words drift in the warm summer air. You danced until the moon came up, and I took you home, weary but with sparkles in your eyes." I want him to know that I loved words because of your influence on me. I want him to love words too. I want to give him my collection on Keillor books, every one, and tell him to read them, on his own time, because each one will be right when they are needed.

I wish I could tell you all of this, simply because I want to thank you so very much. You have done so much for this little head and heart of mine, and I have run out of words to say it all. I will be well. I will do good work. I will consider this keeping in touch. And I will be strong, and raise my above-average child with lots of words.

Thank you for everything.

Kate Rowan, mama to Leif.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

A long, long day, complete with church time.

It was a long day. Lots of stuff happening. Hiking early this morning, which was good, although a bit warmer than I had hoped. We worked on a lot of things to help prepare for the week, which always make me feel good. Then we ran to IKEA to get mats for our workout space. Then we went to church.

If you know me at all, you know that I do not attend church. I'm not going into my spirituality, (unless you bring wine and sit on my couch) but I will say that it was a positive experience. Reason why? My son wasn't a psycho.

Leif has spent very little time in religious buildings. He has been to Baha'i meetings where he danced for everyone, to the joy of all who saw it. Best food ever, too, by the way. He has run around playing hide and seek in a Reform Judaism synagogue. They all thought he was hilarious. He breastfed almost the entire time through a few services at an Episcopal chapel services, and then had coffee with them afterwards. He has watched me have a battle of the wits with his grandfather over Torah content. We just haven't ever been to one place for very long. We like to explore, learn, talk, think. Leif seems to like it too. So today we attended a missionary farewell for a cousin, and went to mine and Leif's first service. 

And of course, he was awesome. His grandma brought him a backpack filled with toys and books. He had his comic book that his dad got him. He had me to cuddle with. So he was pretty fantastic. He was a little mystified by the singing. He kept playing peek a boo with the girl behind us. Overall, I couldn't complain. We took one little break for a walk in the hallways. 

It was another day for exposing my wee offspring to more people, places and things. I'm grateful that we get the opportunity to see all sorts of beliefs around us. I believe it creates a more well-rounded child and eventually, a open-minded adult. 

Have a lovely night, everyone.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Happy Birthday to my Dear Mama

Today is my Mama's birthday. Here is a few thoughts that I have about my mom:

Dear Mom-

You are the only person I hope to grow up to be, and am also terrified to grow up to be. Strange how that works! It's a good thing, I promise.

You are hilarious, even when you don't mean to be. Especially when forced to walk up mountains, picked on about carbohydrates, when you forget your children's names or when you have to walk your dogs. Thank God for the laughter you generate without meaning to.

You are, by far, the most colorful person I have ever met. I have met other individuals that have tried, but have fallen short. You, madam, are a blaze of rainbow.

You have never seen your normal face in the mirror, and I have serious doubts about whether or not you actually know what your own face looks like. I like both versions, thankfully.

I inherited some of your stranger features. I got your never-ending spread of freckles. I got your knees. I got your ginormous boobs. I did not get your fabulous hair, little fingers, or shapely nose. I am mighty peeved, I am.

You always say I am the child that challenged you the most. I both love and fear that. It makes me glad I can push your limits, but I also seriously worry Leif will be the same, and I hope to God he isn't. I was a bit of a nightmare. Thanks for not leaving me on the side of the road in the middle of nowhere. I probably deserved it.

You and Dad are some of the best people the world has ever seen. You gave me an amazing childhood, and I am eternally grateful. Thanks for teaching me to read early, and for giving me endless good books. Thanks for also not making me push at math, since you knew how much I hated it. Thanks for letting me disappear with my favorite characters for hours on end. I ruined my eyesight, but I have a wonderful imagination.

Thanks for always telling me that the weird stuff my kid does is totally normal. It makes me feel better, and reminds me that if you can raise 5 hooligans, I can handle my one neat and tidy little guy. Whew.

I hope you don't mind that your birthday present will show up some time in the next month. I figured I would get it to you soon, and that you wouldn't mind, since it took you 6 months to mail me mine. I don't mind either. It's nice not to worry. I love that you get that.

Anyways, I am going to finish this, and I hope you have a wonderful day. You are a good mama. I love you.

You first and only Squirrel-