Niña Osita, I have stated before, is fully self expressed. The good and the bad. When it’s good. It is soooo good.

The other day we were walking through Costco. Halloween has now passed so, of course, the holiday decorations are out in full effect. We came upon the display where there was a larger than life Christmas Tree, reindeer, Minnie and Mickey Mouse and a snow man, completely lit up. The moment her eyes came in to contact with that display, the wheels came off…

“Mom! Look! A Christmas Tree!!” (Insert high pitched SCREAM, one that would put any heyday Beatle’s fan to shame) “OHMYGOSH IAM SO EXCITED” (Shreik!!!) “SQUEAKY MOUSE!!!!!!!!!” (It’s was she call Minnie – Scream, Jumps up and down) “SQUEAKY MOUSE OH MYGOSH!! CHRISTMAS IS COMING!  I AM SO EXCITED!!!” (People are pointing and looking at us, but not in a annoyed way, they are totally adoring my child)

She stops in her tracks, grabs my hand, looks at me, rubs her face on my hand and says,” Oh thank you thank you! Thank for Christmas! Thank you for bringing me here”.

I am more excited than ever for the holidays. This is the first ear she is going to actually “get it”. Watching it through her eyes is going to be amazing!

I wish I could bottle that unlimited, unfiltered joy and excitement. I hope she never loses that.

Wordless Wednesday – Waterproof

My mother is Filipino and I lived in a the Philippines for a few years growing up. I still have family there and from what I have heard, everybody is OK. But there so many who aren’t ok. So many are devastated. Please help if you can. Thank you.

Fine feathered friends

Even though I live less than 10 minutes from downtown Seattle, I still have a sweet chunk of nature literally at my doorstep. Seattle is hilly and keeps green belts and green spaces in the hills to keep them intact. My house backs into a designated green space and is partially surrounded by beautiful tall trees. There is a walking trail through the green space and this time of year all the beautiful Fall colors are on display. With all these trees come wildlife. I wake up to the sounds of birds every morning. Many species… Crows, robins, blue jays, woodpeckers are regulars and more than occasionally you get Hawks and Bald Eagles cruising over our green space to look for a tasty bite.

I am a novice ornithologist but I have always loved birds! For some reason I feel connected to them, I often dream in flight and have many close encounters with many species including hawks and bald eagles, which are my favorites! I have a Phoenix (mythologically considered to be “King of the Birds”) tattooed on my arm. Living where I live, birds often hang out on the railing of my deck and always in the surrounding trees.

I watch and listen to the birds all the time and have gotten to know their sounds. You can always tell when there is a predator around. The birds go crazy! The crows and jays start squawking in a super aggressive manner, loud and repetitive. I always know when to run outside and check out what’s going on and I almost always catch hawks and eagles fly right over my house. Over the weekend a big beautiful Red Tailed Hawk landed in my next door neighbor’s tree.  It was a plump hawk, majestically sitting in the tree while 6 or 7 crows incessantly dive bombed him. He never flinched or tried to escape once. He just calmly enjoyed his perch while crows were coming at him from every angle. This went on for several minutes. When he finally did fly away, he didn’t go far. He flew from that branch directly across my bedroom window to a tree to my other neighbor’s yard. He gracefully glided down, wings fully stretched, crows screaming and dive bombing him. He hung out in the next tree, again for several minutes, same scenario. He was completely unfazed by the many calculated attacks the little army would spring on him. When he finally flew away, he did with such nobility and ease, all the while being attacked. My husband and I watched in awe the entire time.

My husband said,” No matter where eagles and hawks go, they are always under attack. Every time they fly, other weaker birds are constantly harassing and attacking them.” We talked about how this was true with humans. When people try to do better or rise above their current situation. There is always some “weaker” version of the species trying to hold that person down.  Ever hear the term Crabs in a bucket ?

There is much to be learned from our animal friends. That day, that hawk reminded me that no matter who tries to attack me or hold me back as I try to do better and be better in this world, to stand majestic, graceful and unfazed. To just keep flying. Fly so high those crows can’t reach you.

Thank you Hawk and Crow for that important reminder.

Big Girl Bed and other good stuff…..



Since Osita started preschool it has been leaps and bounds!

This is a girl who is fully self expressed. The good and the bad. Like with any toddler, tantrums are a regular thing. Lately, it seems like we have turned a new leaf. We are having way more good times than not so good times. Her language skills  have jumped up a notch. She is able to identify that she is angry and communicate why. It’s huge!  We also have been working on her breathing through her anger. (As an adult, I struggle with conscience breathing when I am feeling anxious.) Overall, she just seems happier. Playing, pretending, being.

Potty is a regular thing now. Even #2. But no public potties yet though.

Yesterday, we graduated from her crib to a regular bed! What could have just been ‘swap out the beds’ easy project, turned into a ‘pull all the furniture, paint the room, clean the floors, put furniture back and then put the new bed in’ project. It was fun and everything went smooth. Osita was STOKED! I was worried that she would jump out at bedtime but she went down like a total champ. I was so relieved! Today’s nap went smooth too. Success! The pic above was taken before we put the safety railing up, as you can see, she is enjoying this transition just fine.

Tomorrow night, Nina Grande’s high school orchestra is playing with the Seattle Symphony! I told her I have to work but I have arranged to leave early so I can surprise her. 🙂 N.G. plays the viola for her orchestra. She also sings and plays violin and guitar. Quite the talent, that Nina Grande.

Pumpkin Patch Fun Time!

Pumpkin Patch Fun Time!

Every year, I organize a big group of friends to go to the pumpkin patch. Like me, most of my friends are city dwellers, so it’s fun to take a drive to the country, take in the fall colors and pick out some pumpkins. This year we ate fresh roasted corn and fresh apple doughnuts. We enjoyed the animals at the petting zoo, took a hayride and braved the corn maze!

Thanks Bob’s Corn Maze and Pumpkin Patch, we have a blast every year but I think this year was the funnest year yet!


F*ck it!

This is Nina Osita’s new favorite way to get my attention.

My name is Amelia and I have a potty mouth.

What can I say? I am a daughter of a sailor and I have the mouth to prove it. But as much as I want to claim this particular phrase, “F*ck it” is not a phrase that I say regularly or ever. I am prone to various other forms of the F Bomb, though.

The only time N.O. (S) says this phrase are when people are talking and she wants to be heard. If she doesn’t get the attention that she is seeking she yells “F*CK IT!”

You know how your not supposed to react to those kind of things. Well, at first, it completely took me by surprise. I stopped what I was saying. I wasn’t angry, I was amused but I tried to keep a straight face. “Did you say ‘bucket’?” (She wins.)

The next time she did this, I tried really hard to keep going in my conversation but I was totally distracted and the words wouldn’t come out of my mouth. This went on a couple more times. (She wins again.)

The last few weeks, I have been really good about keeping my conversation moving and ignoring her while drops her F Bombs. The situation had been improving and we had been hearing it less. I thought maybe we had finally won but my husband just informed that she had dropped it around him while I working.