Saturday, September 30, 2006

Fine and O.K.

I know this blog is intended to be about sustainability, community and how we are attempting to survive the impending crash of civilization with the end of oil. But sometimes I am required to cut to the true core and have to look deep inside myself.

I have been trained and follow right in step with the answer to, "How are you doing?" with "Oh, fine." I still want to say that, but I will attempt here to relay what is going on behind the great American facade that everything is fine. When I moved out to the Midwest one of my goals was to be more honest and straightforward, to say it as it is. One of the many aspects of Amy Jackson that I admire is she is a straight shooter. What she says she means. Therefore, if she gives a compliment, it is a true, genuine compliment.

I love Owain and I love Charis, though I have not been fair to either in my habit of always saying things are fine. Poor Owain is suffering. His days are usually pretty great; he coos and smiles, flails his chubby arms and legs around, and he growls right before he eats. Sadly, the poor little guy has terrible nights. At night, he can not sleep on his back or in the fancy and expensive Amby baby hammock we purchased. The acid reflux now starts as the sun sets and he has to be held and upright throughout the night.

Charis and I take shifts keeping him up. This wears on Charis a great deal more than I. I have disillusioned myself into believing I can survive just fine on a lot less sleep. It is painful and sad to hold your child over your shoulder and pin them so he does not flail off because his body is contorting in pain. His back acts like a steel snake, writhing and twisting. Thankfully the snake lasts for five minutes and then he passes out. But sometimes the writhing/pass out pattern will last an hour.

Why do I write this? To practice being more honest. To finally be honest with myself and Charis and Owain. I want to save the world, help us be creative thinkers, be independent of oil, not eat produce from 100 miles away let alone 1500 miles. I want to split wood, make apple cider, set up the garden for next year, cook good food, write more music and practice my horn. All that has to be let go and care for Owain and Charis. I am selfish and want to do all. I have to let go.

Do not dispair - it IS all worth it. I can not imagine life before Owain; a five minute party in my arms smiling and cooing, or a long walk listening to him breathe deeply in his sleep melts away everything unimportant - which is everything else.


Thursday, September 28, 2006

A Months Play

September has always been Charis' favorite month. Having been priviledged to be home and not work (which, by the way, should not be a priviledge), I am beginning to understand: crisp mornings and bright, warm days.
Plus, the harvest is bountiful. The essence of September can be described as walking the children to the stop sign or through the woods, canning tomatoes, canning apple sauce, and collecting, splitting and stacking wood.
We were blessed to enjoy Matt, who fit right into the family immediately: cooking, cleaning, entertaining children, splitting wood,
and swatting flies.
While Matt was here we consumed a keg of beer, 4
pounds of butter, and 8 dozen eggs. That was all before breakfast. *Just to give any and all more incentive to come visit.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Guy Smiley

Guess who's excited about being six whole weeks old today?

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Happy Birthday, Ellis!

Okay, so I'm a little late for the birthday train, but thought it was about time to get some anniversary photos of Ellis out on the old blog for posterity (and your viewing pleasure!). Ellis is a riot these days - funny, curious, determined and full of energy. He is taking steps on his own and I waiver between encouraging him to go all the way across the room and hoping he stays on all fours for just a wee bit longer. I love watching my little boy grow up, but I'm already missing his baby days. Thank goodness Owain is keeping us entertained in his gurgling, smiling, goo-goo-ing, baby ways. Ellis just can't WAIT to get his grubby, meaty hands on that baby and teach him all his mischievous ways.

We are welcoming the crisp, cooler days of fall and watch and wait as the trees explode into color. It's been wonderful having Matt with us for a long visit and we'll sadly send him off back to the pacific NW at the end of the week. Who's on board for a visit next?! Come one, come all - we miss you and would welcome you with open arms, pots of soup, cans of applesauce, and fresh tomato sauce.

Love and one-year-old raspberry kisses to you all,

Sunday, September 17, 2006

By Popular Demand...

Okay, you people are making it REALLY HARD to avoid being an obnoxious parent who posts a ridiculous number of photos of their child on the blog. Here are a few randoms I like - one of Owain in his $200 baby hammock, another with his new pal Matt and one of my mom, Grandma Cedarleaf, the baby and me! Note that Owain is as bald as a billiard ball!

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Special for Corrie

Here's the babester just a little over one month old getting to know Uncle Matty Lou!

Monday, September 04, 2006

Dleep Seprivation

Oh you'd know. You'd recognize us even if you didn't know us: stumbling around the grocery store, looking without seeing, one with a car seat dangling from his arm and one with a basket full of random food dangling from hers, she (having left the shopping list with him) trying desperately to remember which item she was supposed to get, and he staring blankly at the list, trying to remember how to read. Yes, we're in the thick of being in a total state of zombie around here. Our darling child is in the midst of some sad gas issues and we're doing our best to keep him from bloating up while still trying to get a little shut-eye ourselves. Today I thought I'd help to relieve some of his issues by feeding him in a warm bath, an opportunity he used to poo ALL OVER ME. (See how relaxed the baby looks in the above photo? Yeah. That was after the explosion. And the draining and re-filling of the tub.) Note to self: perhaps the bath makes the baby a little too relaxed. Oy. I know it's a bit of a cliche and comes up a lot in bad movies about tough guys and babies, but infants really are all about the bodily functions. Seemingly normal people (I won't name any names), now parents, will have long, drawn-out conversations about poo. How much came out. How often. What color. You name it. Crazy!

We've had a few visitors recently - Nathan and Barbara came for some double birthday fun and Barbara took some AMAZING photos of Owain. You can visit their blog to see some of them if you're at work with nothing to do or something: (under the heading "The bump goes to the farm"). It was great to see visibly pregnant Barbara and get excited about the prospect of three little ones running around together next summer! Jay's brother Greg and his wife Emily and their two girls, Hope and Ellie came to see us last weekend, which was a blast! I loved seeing the cousins together, and the girls were so dear with Owain. Good times!

Alright, Jay and I are now racing around, trying to get our business taken care of so we can go to bed before the baby wakes up! Somehow we found the time to can 9 jars of salsa today, and I couldn't even tell you how it happened, though it was mostly Jay. I apologize for the lack of blogging, but it's hard enough to get laundry done these days! I'm still working on my account of Owain's birth, trying to find that middle ground between the experience being too close still to process and key details beginning to fade. I will say that it was very primal, immersed in the power of ancient female wisdom, and felt like a deep connection to all mothers everywhere, down through the generations. Also, I'm in love with all three of my midwives. And more in love with my husband, sister and mom. I couldn't have asked for better support.

Love and diapers full of poo to everyone,