Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Baby Steps

Here are a few of the mini-milestones that have brought me to this happier happy place. As my girls continue to grow, I continue to grow with them:

Whilst my 2 young daughters make their way through milestones of their own: first foods, talking, walking, riding a tricycle, going down the slide at the park…
I can accredit reaching many of my recent personal milestones to their further development – and my realization that taking care of me is important in taking GOOD care of them.

I’ve come a long way in the past 3 years from colic, acid reflux & raised crib mattresses, lactose, formula & breast-milk intolerances, sleep-fighting babes, a strong-willed-child, gluten issues, marital issues, and sleep-deprivation. (Not-so-clearly, some of these apply to the girls, others to me!) I’ve worked my way toward being rather well-balanced, well nourished, and well-rested.

This past spring, I realized that I could take the girls outside in the nice weather – and actually enjoy it. I was no longer dragging the youngest one out in the bouncer, only to have her crying for ‘freedom’ and inclusion 5 minutes into the outing, while running to rescue the older child before she trips and rolls herself down the cascading hillside in our backyard. They are now at a more even ‘stage’ in their development – both walking, with a desire to interact together and share in the same play – as well as having the ability to do so. THIS – was definitely a milestone. I felt like outdoor weather hadn’t arrived a day too soon! I needed some Vitamin D therapy – bad. As it turns out, so did the babes.

Once naps had become more ritualized and predictable, and both the girls were napping together regularly – I had an opportunity to help boost my small side-business as a wedding photographer. I put a lot of heart and soul into marketing myself online using all the free venues I could find, creating an edgy new website to portray my style with sizzle, and networked my way into online life! I was official – and getting out some of that pent-up, almost forgotten creative energy felt amazing!

More recently – I reinvented my personal style. I said to hell with these chicks who have ‘training’ in hair design. None of them had ever once actually produced the style of my describing – no matter how much I told them it didn’t have to even look professionally done. I’m an artist! I want to LOOK on the outside the way I’m FEELING on the inside. Just give me some whispy, piecey, artsy chops! Make it move, make it funky. How much more could I have said???? I gave up on that – and took matters into my own hands – literally! I took my scissors, and started chipping into the ends. Twirling strands here and there, making primarily vertical cuts… I haven’t EVER, in my life on this Earth, been this happy – TRULY happy - With my hair!!! (OMG I actually LIKE – no, wait a sec – LOVE it!!!) Not just settling anymore. Not just dealing… wavy-curly-frizzy-heavy-nasti-strands on my head. Not anymore! NOW – I’m REAL. It’s the me that’s been hiding behind this head of Cousin-It-hair for 3 decades! No experience necessary. Just will-power baby! Oh, the power of will-power. (And a little bit of risk!) I’ve learned that taking calculated risks is very healthy for the bod and soul.

Latterly but not leastly – I spent a baby-day (that’s “Denise” for 2-hour-nap), going through and trying on all of my clothes! I have an entire tub to get rid of… Either too big, too small, or too – well – NOT ME. I have a quirky no-style-style when it comes to clothing. Some days, I feel rather artsy. Some days, gothic. Still other days, it’s more about comfort. Always dependent upon my mood, I’m a little bit country - I’m a little bit rock & roll. I’m always me.

I re-organized all of my jewelry… dusted it, removed the tarnish [see TIP! Here:] I might just start wearing this again – now that I don’t have to worry about being beheaded by necklaces at the hands of small babes learning to utilize their grab-reflex. They have now progressed to “Pit-ty” (for Addie, 1-1/2), and “Oh, mama, I like your necklace. Can I see it?” (for Myla, 3.) And I am now onto – “Hey world – I’m BAAAAACK. Only even betta!”

These were gradual steps, small changes, and didn’t cost much other than some long-awaited-for time. Time well-spent!

TIP! Doing for you doesn’t have to be costly – even if shopping is your thing. Check out the local thrift stores, consignment stores, and garage sales. You’d be amazed at what you can find for a greatly reduced cost. Many Good Will stores offer color tag sales on various days of the week – you can save even more. Salvation Army, Good Will, & others will often have half-price days for various holidays (Labor Day, Memorial Day, etc). I can’t count the number of times I’ve found items with original tags/ packaging for a fraction of the cost. And – gently used items hardly appear used at all! Also a great way to recycle your no-longer-loved goods.
Also – check out Thrifty Home for lots of fun tips!

A QUOTE: "Better to write for yourself and have no public, than to write for the public and have no self." ~Cyril Connolly

WHIDFML: Bought some fab tops at a garage sale for $2 each piece!

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