Well I’m back. I’m sorry for taking such a long break, that never was my intent but sometimes, a break is good for the soul. I come back to you a year older, yes, I celebrated a birthday last month. I come back to you another year married, we celebrated an anniversary this month and I come back to you a bit lighter. This weight is both literal and figurative. If you haven’t seen me in a while I’m a few pounds down…not to worry, nothing is wrong with me. The hubby and I have tried a new way of eating called Keto (whick I’ll tell you more about in the coming weeks) and it seems to agree with us both. It is a daily choice we make to stay on track and yes, it is a choice but one that we’re willing to make for that feisty preschooler we have. The kid has asked me to no longer call her a toddler, which actually she is no longer in that defined title. Usually that stops at the age of three and since the kid had a half birthday during my break well, she’s now in a category all on her own! My preschooler has kept me busy to say the least and with the holidays almost upon us, it’ll just get more hectic. Now is the time to set those family traditions that hopefully she’ll remember for a lifetime. We’re fortunate to have booked a few events that I hope will excite her and remind us of what the true meaning of Christmas is all about. So I’m back and look forward to connecting with you all in the coming weeks and months.
It has been a hectic couple of weeks at our house. Last time I wrote Holy Week and Easter were approaching. We were fortunate enough to have my parents and brother and his family visiting for Easter. It was wonderful to all be together and have the cousins be able to hang out and do all of the things that a an almost three year old and four year old would do when they are together. There were so many great snapshots of their trip including Miss K’s first ever Easter egg hunt! Melissa did a phenomenal job organizing everything and of course it went off without a hitch expect for the baskets that I forgot to bring. Fitting that the kids ran around in shopping bags to fill up!
The week continued with yiayia and pappou staying on which meant early morning snuggles and of course a morning koulouraki for the kid. Yes I know it isn’t the breakfast of champions but hey when they visit they get to spoil her and I’m okay with that. I swear regardless if my family is here for three days or two weeks the time flies by. We were lucky to have yiayia and pappou here for Miss K’s third birthday. Yes you read that right, my baby is three. Well now she tells me that, “I’m a big girl now, but don’t worry mama, I’ll always be your baby.” Yes you will be. We are so lucky to have a healthy, smart, funny little girl full of personality and yes sometimes attitude. She definitely speaks her mind and lets you know who is in charge. There are days that this drains me to the core, I won’t lie, but on the other days it makes me so proud. I want her to be feisty and fiery. I want her to challenge and always question in order to learn. I want her to have compassion and the courage to speak her mind.
My wishes for her as she enters her third year are: first and foremost health, because without our health we are nothing. Secondly I hope that she can see the love that her father (along with so many family members and friends) have for her and bring that with her in everything she does. Remember that she’s good enough when the other little girl doesn’t want to play with her. Remember that she can climb the rock wall when it looks so scary through her little eyes. Remember that she can sound out that word in the book, as she tells me, “I want to read it mommy.” And thirdly, I want her to grow. Obviously that is a given you’ll say, she’s three of course she’ll grow. But I mean more than in height and weight. I mean into the little lady that she is becoming. I mean into the compassionate child who wanted us to help the birdie stuck in the neighbours vent on the side of the house; who wanted us to go back when we saw the ambulance wheeling out a lady from her house, to make sure she was okay. This is what is important in life. You can have all the money in the world but if you don’t have your health, you aren’t surrounded by love and you don’t have compassion, what is the point of living?
Happy Birthday Little Lady. I love you to the moon and back. And yes, you will ALWAYS be my baby!
Well what a busy two weeks it has been. Since the last time I wrote we had family visiting to celebrate the little Miss’ birthday. I know everyone says it but seriously I can’t believe how the last year has flown by. The first year is a whirlwind as you’re sleep deprived, unsure what to do with this tiny human. The second year is different, you’re still unsure of what to do with this human but from a different perspective. How to get them to stop jumping on the furniture or wanting to run in the street. Trying to understand everything that they’re saying to you and helping them not get mad when they can’t communicate. Trying to make sure you instill in them the important this in life for that age, things like: confidence, sharing, and trying to be an all around well natured child.
This year we had multiple events to celebrate the big day and were so lucky to have family and friends with us. We went right from the parties to Orthodox Easter or Pascha as we call it. It is a very special time of year where we are do things a little bit different than our other Christian friends. First off is the date, Orthodox Easter always falls after Passover. This year it was over a month after Catholic Easter. Next year it will be together and then not again for eight years. We’re not big into the bunny and chocolates. We’re more into red dyed eggs and candles lit at midnight. Regardless of how you incorporate traditions into your Pascha, I hope it Χριστός Ανέστη!
Lastly we celebrated the Nameday of a special man in our lives, Παππού Γιώργο! Pappou George and all of the George and Georgias celebrate their Nameday the Monday after Pascha when it falls after April 23rd. So this past Mondya we celebrated him and other cousins, aunts and uncles with those names. Να σας χαιρόμαστε και να είσαστε πολύχρονη!
Sorry for not writing recently. As you can tell by my posts I write about recent happenings in our lives. Well the last few weeks have been busy to say the least. The little lady and I (along with my mother in law) went on a road trip to Illinois to visit my best friend from the first grade. We have birthdays just days apart and this one was what I call a milestone birthday. It ended in a -0. Since I knew we couldn’t be together for our birthdays we planned a trip so we could spend some time together. She has three little ones and mine makes four so needless to say the crazy days of partying and staying up all night weren’t happening unless someone with ten little fingers and toes was keeping us up.
It was wonderful to see Amanda and her family. During the 10 hour drive back, after having said our goodbyes it got me thinking about friendship and what it really is/means. I am an outgoing person. I am a person who knows a lot of people, or rather because of my unique name, a lot of people know me. I have an amazing group of friends and acquaintances. What does it mean to have a friend to you? To me these are the people I lean on the most. The people I confide in or am able to share a laugh or tear with. These are the people that you know, no matter what, will be by your side through it all. I’ve had the opportunity to have this friend by my side through so many amazing events. We saw each other through the high school years (big hair, puffy prom dresses, basketball games and cheering meets). We saw each other struggle and soar as we made our way through college/university. I recall the last night of my freshman year and something about an exam the next day. Being there when our respective courtships began and seeing the other so happy and in love. Standing by each others side as maid of honor during the happiest day of our lives. Listening and laughing as we went through our pregnancies at the thought of the unknown. Seeing those baby smiles for the first time and knowing that this has changed each one of us forever. And finally having our kids meet for the first time, secretly hoping they got along. Seeing how good her children were with mine (they’re older and sent an amazing example) and seeing how mine could hang with their crew.
Through all of this I couldn’t help but feel grateful. Grateful that I had this amazing friend by my side through it all. Grateful that our husbands and kids get along. Grateful that we may have started a second generation of BFFs.
Sorry of not writing last week. The little one was sick and as most moms know once that happens nothing else matters. We’ve been transitioning from an infant to a toddler. Not that it happened overnight but really I guess now I’m letting myself admit to that I don’t have an infant anymore. As my friend said don’t worry the day after her first birthday she’s still your baby. Of course there is no denying that, it just seems as though my little baby is turning into a determined toddler. We had two days of cuddles which brought me back to the early days when I could just leave her down for a minute and do something. The days that were spent her sitting in her chair are now long gone. Today we’re crawling round, couch surfing or using our pet elephant to walk around the house. It is amazing as a parent to see all of these firsts through their eyes. As a parent it is scary as all hell to see your tiny baby taking on their own personality and becoming a determined (also known as stubborn) toddler. As a parent it is scary to see them open to so many people and not be afraid of anything. As a parent it is our job to not put the kabosh on this. It is our job to not let our fears enter their world yet. It is our job to protect them, not in the sake of having them live in a bubble, but in the sake of letting them explore, learn and turn into the amazing little boys and girls that will take on the world.
If you want to take a peek at some of the little lady’s first steps check out our walking video.
Well the last couple of weeks have been hectic ones for this mama. I’ve continued to work while raising our daughter and these past 8 days my clients had four events between them that we had to get through. If you know me you know that the job got done to the best of my abilities regardless of life going on in the background.
We continued the party celebrations for an amazing little girl that we’ve gotten the pleasure to know these last 8 months. Her mom has become a good friend and it is amazing to watch our little ladies become friends. She was ever the princess that every little girl should be on their first birthday and of course surrounded by family, friends and most importantly love.
After finishing a fun Saturday it was a few more hours of work to prepare for what would be the last of four events in 8 days that I was a part of. Working on events, regardless of how big or small, you always sweat the small stuff. How will everything turn out, how will the weather effect your event, will the AV work, will there be enough food and drink, will your volunteers show up. This is just the nature of the beast to have these worries flying through your head. As I was driving into the city, I went through all of the pieces and knew we were in the best place we could be. The event which was for an organization whose board I sit on BART: North American Centre for Byzantine Arts. We were hosting a Byzantine artist who would literally create a work of art before our eyes. This artist, Dr. George Kordis, was able to literally take a blank canvas and in two hours time create a masterpiece. Thank you to Christina Kakaletris for taking these and many more amazing pictures of the evening. You can see more of her photos from the event here.
With the excitement of the party and the event behind me I was excited to get home to my DD that I had left for the first time for so many hours with someone who wasn’t a family member. Although at times I feel as though this friend is more like a sister. We began our journey home and along the way hubby and I had a flat tire. Of course this would happen on one of the coldest nights and we would also discover that I don’t have a jack in my car, so much for doing this on our own. CAA bless their hearts had a two hour wait. Not what this mother who was itching to get back home to her DD wanted to hear. We found an independent tow driver that was able to help us out in far less than two hours.
As we were waiting I got a call that no one is prepared for. My cousin back in Boston had passed away. Another individual taken from us far too soon. This man was one of the good ones. Not because we’re related but because he was a giving soul. He was there for his family, his church, his community at large. I wouldn’t be able to count the number of ‘kids’ my age and younger he helped all the years of coaching basketball. I remember his smile and his gentle ways. My heart aches for his wife and children and of course his parents. I always heard the saying a parent should never have to bury their child. I honestly can say that I fully didn’t understand what that meant until I had a child of my own. May your memory be eternal my dear cousin. Αἰωνία σου ἡ μνήμη Ξάδελφε.
Well the year of big birthdays has begun. It actually started a couple of weeks ago with my mom’s (yiayia’s) birthday which I guess in its own way was a big one 🙂 The ones I am referring to are the one year old birthday and the big 4-0! I shudder to think that I will be turning that number later this year but I find comfort in knowing I’ll be one of the last of my friends to turn that age. Thank God for a birthday later in the year!
Being Greek and not having a very famous patron saint, my nameday wasn’t a big deal growing up. Honestly it wasn’t until I was an adult that I found out I had a nameday. So birthdays were it. We would always have a celebration. Some years it was a big party and some years it was a cake with just the family but regardless you always got a birthday card (yes my husband jokes that as an American we keep Hallmark in business and send thank you notes for a thank you note) and usually a gift. As I got older and especially when I moved to another country the connection around birthdays was even more special. The fact that people took time out of their busy lives to remember me and my day meant so much. I guess this is the way I see birthdays in others. I try and do my best to remember the day and hopefully have sent a card in advance. Now as I’m about to embark on the year where my little one will turn one they have an even greater meaning. It is as if you get to relive all of these great memories again, except now you remember them 🙂 Don’t worry I won’t bore you with months of posts on how the plans are coming for Little Miss’ big day but I will share pictures once the time comes. I just know it was great to be able to start these celebrations off right and look forward to all of the parties ahead. Bring on the CAKE!
Happy New Year! Amazingly we entered 2015 with a sense of calmness and peace in our house. Who am I kidding?!? There was a baby crying, toys thrown all over the floor, music blaring. Oh wait that was January 1st. On New Year’s Eve we were all tucked away in our beds by 10:30 and I honestly wouldn’t have had it any other way.I won’t sit here and bore you with my plans for the new year. Plus no fun in reading it all in advance, you’ll have to wait for it to play out week by week.
The one thing I’ll tell you is my goal is to care. I guess I should explain. Of course I care about my family, friends, etc., but I need to stop caring about the fact that they breakfast dishes aren’t done and put away by 10am (or at least that’s what my hubby tells me 🙂 ). I have to care less that the beds aren’t made and that there are toys across the living room floor. That is my goal not only to myself but to my little girl. Crazy to believe in a few months we’ll be celebrating a birthday and yes the planning has begun. I want to take these last few months before the big 0-1 and cherish them even more. So if you come to my house and find some crumbs from the apple, spinach, banana muffin I baked for my LO, or if you see the coffee mugs still in the sink at 1:00pm, I’m sorry. I was too busy getting hugs and kisses from my little one to notice.
Wishing you all a great 2015. Remember this is not a dress rehearsal so make today count!!