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Off You Go

Almost 3 years have flown by in a flash
Your smile
Your smirk
Your signature, full-bodied, heartfelt laugh
It’s music.

DJ, Play that song
Again and again.

It fills our mornings as we brush your teeth,
It floats in the air as we run laps to get your shoes on.
It’s magic.

We have spent every day together.
You and me.
Me and You.
We say goodbye to Daddy in the mornings.
We drop Big Sis at school.
And then it’s Us.

We have our special bagel shop outings.
Library mornings.
Staying cozy inside all winter long, puzzling and reading,
And having breakfast at 10:00, just the time when you’re ready.

You have been my mooring.
Here in Boston.
I’ve held onto you
As much as you’ve held onto me.

I think of you starting pre-school and my heart aches.
Will you cry and look back or will you run ahead into this new adventure?

My baby.
My little girl.
It’s hard to let you go,
Knowing this is just the beginning of letting gos.

May you go out into that big world and
Shine your light.
And start this new story.

Love, prayers and power to my baby girl.

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Why I March

My Dear Daughters,

This week began with the celebration of an American revolutionary, Martin Luther King, Jr.   It started with his dream, “rooted in the American dream…a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed – we hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal.”

My girls, you know that all men, women, girls, and boys are created equal. People are people. We are all made of the same stuff and love and hurt just the same. We are here on this earth to do as much good as we can. To lift one another up into the fullness of all that we are. This is the reason people came to America. To live out their potential and make real their dreams. This is what brought your Indian grandparents and European ancestors here. Let us continue making America a place for dreamers.

In the past months, we have heard a man who took our nation’s highest office speak in such disrespectful ways to so many different kinds of people. The words that he has spoken are beyond my imagination. I did not see in him wisdom to govern this diverse country. I did not see that he treats people with basic human dignity. Yet, he won and now we call him President.

Now, remember this – Just because he won, does not mean that what he did was right. My children, winning is not enough. The way in which we win, matters. The words we speak, matter. The actions you take, matter. The story that your life tells, matters.

So, in response, today, I stand in protest of all that was said and done and the darkness that his rise to power has stirred up in this country. I stand in solidarity with all those who share a vision of hope, love, justice, and opportunity for all. I stand 8 years later once again on a cold, January morning in honor of you, looking towards this dream for America.

May we always rise up for one another. I will always get up from the places of comfort to build a better world for you.

You are your sister’s keeper, your brother’s keeper. If you are not free, I am not free. If you suffer, I too carry your burden. We march to shoulder these weights together, and so you know that this is what citizenship looks like. This is how you build a democracy that represents what you believe. This is it.

May we do this work together, as a family, as a community, as a nation.

I love you.

Momma

To My Sister

One of the greatest gifts of having our second child has been watching our tender-hearted firstborn fall in love with her baby sister.  She is filled with such awe, compassion and love for this baby – her baby.  This poem echoes some of the sentiments that she has shared with us. She has reminded me how important it is that everyone have someone who believes wholeheartedly in them.  As a parent, I see that my role is not only to nurture these children individually, but also to nourish this bond of sisterhood between them.

Sweet P,

Sometimes I just can’t believe you’re real.
You are so sweet,
So happy,
So smiley,
So eternally lovable.

As I fall asleep tonight, I’m thinking of you.
I tell Momma,
My Baby Sister is wonderful.

I will always know your wonder.
I will always take care of you.
I will always be by your side.

When you can’t sleep,
I will sing to you.
If you need me to talk to you,
I’ll tell you a story.
If you just need love,
I’ll hug you tight.

Baby, I will love you to infinity.
Always and forever,
Your Big Sister.

Going into Labor? Remember, BYOW.

Weeks before I had my children, I had my hospital checklist ready – clothes for me and the baby, slippers, snacks, some books or magazines to pass the time, and dozens of gallons of water? The last thing a woman in labor, doubled over with the indescribable pain of contractions should have to think about is bringing enough water for her delivery.  I’m not even sure how many dozens of gallons of water must have been used during my stay in the hospital. Doris’ story is the story of so many women around the world who give birth at home or at health centers without running water.  Community health workers work tirelessly to care for the people of their village, and work miracles with limited resources.  As you watch this, imagine the challenge for Doris and her husband to prepare enough water for the delivery, carrying it from the water source to their home and perhaps to the health center by foot. How many trips must they make to a water pump? What if they didn’t even own more than a couple buckets to fill?  Let us always remember the sanctity of this precious resource.  Water is life.

http://www.wateraid.org/us

Keep Loving

There are countless moments each day when it’s exceedingly difficult to come forward with love. I’m learning that if we pause, and try to love through those teachable moments, we come out feeling fuller and closer to being the person we want to be.  It’s an active, conscious process to practice love daily.  Luckily, with 10 foot tall piles of snow outside, and a toddler and newborn at home all day, I have plenty of moments to get better at this and keep on practicing. Thank you for this gift, Nimo.

Creating dinner themes to make meal planning easier

I found this post a couple a weeks ago and it has made my weekly, meal planning so much easier. We are so blessed to have endless options in this country, but it also makes choosing a more difficult task.  Now, we have soup night, Indian night(s), pasta night, fish night, new recipe night, and pizza night…..or more specifically, “pepperoni pizza with crust” night.

http://www.peanutblossom.com/blog/2013/10/bringing-back-our-family-meals.html/

A Dog, A Cat, and a Baby

Momma, Momma, look at me.
I can’t J, I’m driving right now.
Momma, I want to have a dog, a cat and a baby.
Then we can all play together. It will be so fun.
Oh wow, J, sounds like a full house.

You want a dog, a cat AND a baby?
Where will we keep them? Who will care for them?
So much to think about, little love.

I will take care of them, Momma.
I’ll give the cat, cat food.
I’ll give the dog, dog food.
And I’ll hold the baby.
See, like this.

As she rocks her little baby doll back and forth and whispers so sweetly,
“Don’t cry, baby. I’m here. It’s going to be okay,”
I can see that she will be an incredible mother, friend, and most of all,
the best big sister.

You’re going to get your chance, J.
You’re getting a baby.
A baby who’s all your own.
Someone who will know your story.
Someone who will always hold your hand.

You will be the big girl.
Always my baby, but the stupendous, spectacular, indomitable big sister
To your little baby.
Shall we make a place for baby?
In our home
In our hearts
In our hands

Baby has already made a home in me.

Make rainbows in the snow

Happy Valentine’s Day, lovelies. What to do with a foot of snow and a toddler? Grab some food coloring and make a rainbow in the snow.  We made these little rainbow cupcakes with our muffin tins. We had such a fun morning, digging, coloring, and sliding on the mini snow mountain in our yard.

Slippery

Oh J, the ice is slippery.
“Be careful, Momma.”
“I’ll hold you.”
And I’ll hold you, sweet girl.
We can hold each other on the ice,
And skate and dance and even slide.

I see this sweet face,
Hear the tenderness in her words,
And I can feel the gentle strength of little arms trying to keep me safe.

This little love was born with an impulse to care for others.
Day in, day out, we share in the giving and receiving of love,
In our good morning greetings, bagel shop outings, and sleepy time rituals.
I take care of her,
And she heals so much in me.
She is my gift, my grace, my connection to God.

It’s in the slippery moments
That I hold her
And she holds me
We take care of each other
Forever and ever.
This is my prayer.
Amen.

 

Glitter Paint Fun

The latest and greatest discovery in our home is glitter paint! We are currently working on a little project for our Valentine, and glitter paint is our medium. It’s instant sunshine on a cloudy day.  You can buy it already mixed and ready to use.  If you’re painting with a toddler, put a sheet down on the floor as you never know where the paint will end up. Parents, I’m pretty sure you may enjoy this more than your kids.