Oh, heeeeeeey guys…….

Whatdya know – Thursday came and went and then Friday came and went and…I completely forgot to write!

To those of you who missed meals and stayed up all night worrying about why I didn’t write and what on earth had become of me, my sincerest apologies! Rest assured; everything is a-ok. Just got a little busy/absent-minded.

Life is going well. We are chugging right along. T is playing nice with his friends at school and also doing much better with his sister at home. Their friendship is blossoming as she becomes more and more active and (attempts to be) verbal. She is googoogagaing and oobeedoobeeing her heart out and it is just the cutest thing; I go right along with her and act as if I know just exactly what she is talking about. You know the lines: “Oh, is that so?”, “Ya don’t say?”, “How fascinating!”

Just today, the offspring were having the time of their lives playing and laughing in the tub. Amazing what a bunch of running water and bubbles can do. It gives me the warm fuzzies to see them getting along. After their bath, as we were getting ready for bed, Brother toted Sister around here and there and they exchanged 8 or 10 hugs.

Ooh! I should mention we had a nice little lunch out with Shin Haraboji (Paternal Grandfather in Korean) and Appa (Father) today. Port of Call buffet in Hackensack. Delicious. If you live in NJ and haven’t checked it out, put it on your list! And no, they have not paid me to tell you that.

Apologies again for being scatterbrained. Will be back on schedule next week! A fabulous weekend to you! Ta ta!


Bad A** Mom Skills

I thought I’d share a few of the thoroughly impressive skills I’ve acquired since becoming a mom. Maybe this will encourage some of the ladies out there who are not really looking forward to the morning sickness and bloating pre baby and then the constant messiness and noise post baby. There are some redeeming factors!

1. I am an excellent multitasker. I can walk, chew gum, and talk on the phone all the while changing one child’s diaper and picking food out of the other child’s hair.

2. I can function (albeit just barely) on little to no sleep. Thankfully, this skill hasn’t been needed recently as both my children are sleeping pretty well through the night by now (thank the Lord).

3. I have a superhuman, acute sense of hearing and my eyes pop open at the slightest whimper of my baby next door. Heck, sometimes my eyes pop open when I dream about a baby crying.

4. I know the names of way more Transformer characters than a grown woman should and can transform each of my son’s toys in 5 seconds flat.

5. I’ve gotten really good at feeling around and finding things in the dark (including my phone, which I pretty much have to find every single night). In fact, I’m really good at finding stuff in general. Like Ninja status. More often than not, I can spend 5 minutes sifting through the 3 or 4 bins and boxes we always have lying around in each room and find precisely the right weapon or ball or whatever other gadget my son is looking for. One time, I found my daughter’s hair clip in our hotel room trash can. I scoured the room (flipped all the sheets and blankets) to no avail, so I took desperate measures. I am NOT losing another one of those.

6. I have finally, finally, finally learned how to be patient. I mean truly patient. My kids have tested me in ways I never thought I’d have to endure and pushed buttons I never knew I had…all at the same time. With help from friends, family, the Internet, and the good Lord, I have pretty much gotten to the point where I can go the majority of my days without having a meltdown (of my own. My son’s – those are another story).

7. I have pretty impressive upper arm strength. Mostly from carrying one squirmer or the other or both for extended periods of time. (Now, back to working on my pelvic floor! Blah)

8. In a similar vein, I’ve developed pretty kick a** reflexes! (I sure needed this as a teen when I awkwardly fumbled through any and every sport I attempted) I’ve had to catch tripping/falling/flying children so many times that it is second nature to me. I save them at lightning speed and I can almost subconsciously predict exactly when and in which direction they are headed.

9. I have eyes in the back of my head (of course 😉 you mamas know what I’m talking about)

10. I love with a love that only mothers have. There is something completely unique about a mother’s love for her children: selfless, unconditional, and with the power to change the world. (Don’t you forget it, mamas!) P.S. I’m sure a father’s love (which I could never personally fully understand since I’m not a father) is just as incredible

Things I Can’t Live Without

I have mentioned that I’m fickle. A few things I don’t think I could ever give up even if you paid me or if the almighty social media claimed they were abhorrent things reserved only for losers are:

1. CHOCOLATE (you may recall)

2. Country music (I used to be ignorant and hated it, but a good friend of mine converted me). I can’t claim to love the entire genre… There are exceptions, but I won’t mention names, so as not to offend any die hard, old school Country fans. Essentially, I lean towards the newer stuff (I prefer slightly less twang). Currently on repeat: Humble and Kind by Tim McGraw (perfect example of everything good about Country music)

3. Flowers. Pretty much any and all kinds. Roses, lilies, daffodils, irises, orchids, tulips, hyacinths, hydrangeas, carnations, daisies…you get the idea. If you love me, buy me flowers.

4.  Rain! My mom used to hate rain (she had a good reason), but I feel so at ease when it rains. I feel embraced by it; I feel loved by it. I love the sound of it on the roof (the perfect lullaby), the sweet, refreshing smell of it, the sight of it in droplets on the grass, the feel of it on my skin. The rain helps me wash things away and start fresh.

5. North Carolina. There are some amazing people in this state. My mom was from North Carolina and her siblings and their families are all still there (along with my BFFs and their family). There’s nothing quite like Southern hospitality. I have so many happy memories of visiting with different relatives as a child – the peaceful quietness I wasn’t used to, the squeaky front porch swings, the home made meals of lima beans and mashed potatoes, the giant (I was quite small), fluffy beds with ten pillows on top, the “y’all”s and the “Oh, Law”s, the old fashioned paintings, the rustic pianos, the birds chirping in the garden, the barefoot walks through the grass. Most of all, the smiling, laughing faces. I hold these memories even closer now, because my mom is in all of them. God, I miss her. If I try hard enough, I can remember far back enough to when the home place (as my mom always called the house she grew up in) was still lived in; furnished and kept with care – every bed made and every picture hung just so. To the time I spent with my grandparents – picking corn with Granddaddy, playing Pick Up Sticks with Grandmother (I don’t know why I tried so hard to cheat, but she never stood for it!), playing music and singing songs at Christmas. Those were some great ol’ days.

6. Oldies! My dad used to play 101.1 WCBS FM when we were in the car together and it drove me CRAZY for about a decade. And then one day, I found myself tapping my toes and humming right along. Now, I love me some 60s hits. Makes me think “better times”, even though I wasn’t around yet in those times. That’s just the feeling the songs radiate.

7. Singing. I am singing and singing is me. Runs in the family 😉 *ahem* Aunt C, Uncle T, Uncle E!

8. And speaking of family, I think it goes without saying that the very most important people in my life are God and my husband and children. I could never in a million years give any of that up. They make me whole. They give me meaning.

What are some things you can’t do without? I’d love to hear 🙂

The Other Best Friend

Wait, what? I thought you just did a post on your best friend.

Yes, you are correct! Thanks for paying attention! It means a lot.

Coincidentally, I am one of the lucky few who actually has TWO best friends. Can you imagine? All the warm fuzzies and life enriching perks that come with having a best friend TIMES TWO!

You lucky devil.

I know.

D is actually C‘s sister. (That family must have some fantastic genes.) D is the mommy figure if you had to pick one out of all the siblings (there are a lot, by the way!). Watching her interact with her siblings and friends during those couple of years we spent together, what stood out to me was her nurturing heart. She is incredibly caring, considerate, and compassionate. She is also exceptionally patient and responsible. She has been this way since 2005 and has grown into an all around mature, independent, and elegant woman that I admire and aspire to be like.

Also, let me take a moment to say that she actually IS a mother now!!! (CONGRATULATIONS, MY LOVE!!! YOU DID IT!!! You are beautiful and strong and an inspiration.) I simply have no words for how excited I am for her and her hubby starting this exciting chapter in their lives. Now D and I will have even MORE hilarious stories and helpful advice to share with each other (after we’re done complaining about sleep deprivation and never ending laundry).

Some of my fondest memories with D are of us singing together. We are so in love with singing. It’s not about how we sound (though we’re not too bad if I do say so myself), but about feeling free and alive when we sing. D taught me to not be afraid of my voice; to sing loud and passionately for all to hear (we may or may not have sent her annoyed siblings running for the hills on occasion).

D spent a time overseas during which our communication took a dip (we have time difference and phone bills to thank for that). Like with C, however, no matter how much time passes between our phone conversations, we never develop an awkwardness or a distance. Our friendship is zip-lock sealed (for freshness)! It is and always will be a genuine and simply real connection.

I was reading a book by Mindy Kaling (This woman is so funny) and she mentioned best friends turning into just friends and that sounded so horrifying! I would never forgive myself if I let that happen between C and D and I. These sisters are the best thing that’s ever happened to me (besides the obvious ones). If you could see love, ours would be bright, bold and endlessly (obnoxiously) glittering.

The Best Friend

I have a best friend. An AMAZING one at that. She is there for me when I need her, she gets my (sometimes wacky) sense of humor, and she wholeheartedly supports me in whatever I do and wherever I go in life. I’m tempted to whip out my Maid of Honor speech right about now, but I will spare you as it could get super emotional up in here!

To sum it all up, this girl has changed my life. I know, I know, super cliche. I can’t get away from cliches with this one. Practically every sappy BFF cliche out there applies in our situation. We used to joke that if only one of us had been male, we would have been the perfect storybook couple (Fortunately, we did find ourselves some pretty stellar alternatives).

Our friendship began in the days of yore, in those good ol’ days I was telling you about. I was in the middle of high school and I thought I was happy, but I was starting to realize I actually wasn’t. I wanted to change courses in my life (I’ll spare you the dramatic – eh, not too dramatic – details). I wanted to rediscover the core of who I was and what I wanted. It was the perfect time for me to make a best friend (well, a new one. In the course of me trying to become a better person, I neglected many people I loved. Long story. One I may or may not get to…). And this is when I met C. We were young; we were doe eyed and bushy tailed. I had recently decided to do away with my hesitations and reservations about getting close to people and was eager to be free and real, my genuine self. C was just plain friendly and cheerful; so welcoming and so refreshing. And there we had it. The perfect recipe for BFFdom.

I have had this conversation with C. About how the timing for two people to become close has to be just right. Because people are always going through whatever drama they’re going though (women especially – sorry) and there are only certain points in time when each person is open to starting a new friendship. Willing to be vulnerable. To let their guard down. To love someone. To build something new. (I can hardly imagine how much more complicated this is when it comes to romantic relationships. I’m not an experienced dater – see arranged marriage – , so someone will have to fill me in on those deets.) Being best friends with C during my formative years of life contributed a lot to who I am today. I’d like to think a lot of my confidence and happiness with who I am came from her and her family.

C has a bubbly, infectious personality. She is the life of the party: friendly, funny and smart (not to mention freaking gorgeous!). The truly great thing about C, though, is that she genuinely just wants everyone to be happy. She is the last to judge and the first to offer forgiveness and understanding. She is also exceptionally thoughtful. She was the only person who sent me a card on the anniversary of my mother’s passing. That’s how well she knows me; how well she knows how I feel and what I need.

She told me on one of our late night phone chats, and I’ll never forget it, “Diane, no matter what, I’m on your side”, despite me expressing that I was in the wrong and I had just made a mess of things.

I want to end with this love note to C: You are my better half, you complete me, and I am forever and a day on YOUR side. (Yes, I stole that from my Maid of Honor speech. I had to use something! That thing was beautiful!)