Monday, June 15, 2009

i {heart} faces ... sepia tones - adults.

sepia - adult, originally uploaded by jenniferlivolson.

i am submitting this photograph in the sepia toned adults category over at i {heart} faces ...
there are some talented people over there ... check them out!

... this was caught in a moment of watching my g-ma from across the park. and the sepia so added to the emotion in her face, me thinks ... god, she would hate that i said that. she also hates open cupboards in the kitchen. i always left the cupboards open. i'm kinda starting to understand why she gave me a set of towels for christmas when i was 8 years old.

i {heart} faces ... sepia tones ...

child-sepia, originally uploaded by jenniferlivolson.
this is my sepia toned child entry at the i heart faces contest ...

i know ... short and sweet wordage to go along with the picture ... but i'm kinda out of words today. after last night's emotional release in a post ... i have not so much to say. except ... ah ... a picture of my soon-to-be middle.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

it all started with french fries.

or curly fries to be more specific.

we were sitting at our little corner table ... having a quick bite to eat before our last dance class of the season. when the waft of fried seasoned potato cut into a curly fashion crept into my olfactory senses.

the queasiness started rising to the surface.

and then the children began assaulting me with their curly fry encrusted fingers smothered in ketchupy hues of red.

i just about lost it.

i kept placing my nasty blackberry iced tea in my face breathing in the scent of something not nearly strong enough to cancel out the stench of ketchuped curlies.

when we finally got to the car *deep breath* ... mini-van ... i rushed to grab the year old vanilla scented air freshener and attempted to smoosh it into my nostrils to rectify the scent of the spiraled potatoes that stella decided she needed to bring along with her.

and then i cried.

i cried in dance class when a little girl was bawling over ... i have no idea ... something. not. even. my. child. and i cried because she was sobbing.

i bawled when an on-star commercial came on and some poor man somewhere had been recorded during a car accident involving him being crushed into the front of his car. and the amazingly wonderful on-star woman told him that she would stay with him until someone else was there to help him.

i felt tears welling up because i was going to take a test to find out if i was pregnant and i was already 5 days late ... and because i hate french fries.

my husband and my best friend got me through that test.

the positive one.

the one that i peed on and immediately two pink lines appeared.

the one that told me that i'm pregnant with my third baby. my last baby.

and i'm trying to spend every single minute cherishing the fact that i feel like crap and that french fries suck and on-star telephone operators are the most wonderful people on the face of the earth.

it's hard though.

i took a bite of sliced ham the other day and remembered a note about avoiding lunch meats.
i walk through the day unbelievably exhausted and forget that i need to seek out opportunities to nap and let my body do what it's supposed to do.
i thoroughly enjoyed a delicious salad with pecans and craisins and goat cheese and balsamic dressing ... remembering (the next day) that soft cheeses should be avoided during pregnancy.

i'm happy. so happy. unexpectedly thrilled at the prospect of adding to our gaggle of girls. admittedly at peace with the idea of potential hues of blue popping up amid pinks and purples.

however ... i suppose this is how it is with your third pregnancy? too busy to remember every single minute that i actually AM pregnant?
does it sound horrendously awful if i say that i feel detached? if i say that i feel more insecure about this pregnancy than i did the last time? even though i'm constantly queasy and exhausted. and i'm experiencing the strangest dreams ... including one a week before the positive test in which i found out i was 6 weeks pregnant. i wasn't six weeks at the time. i don't think. i don't even remember when i need to go to see my midwife. i want to call her and i want to see her and i want her to kiss me on the cheek and tell me congratulations and i want her to tell me this is all going to happen. and it's true. and it's going to be ok.

but i don't feel like it's definite yet. although, i'm sure that the first whoosh of a heartbeat and the kick of a foot against my bladder will help with the inevitabilityness of it all.

i'll get there ... i'm sure. with a due date curiously close to the date that i lost my first baby. we're coming full circle, baby.

and i promise ... i'll pick out a name for you by the time you arrive. as long as you keep up the no-french-fry deal ... which is so good for mama's already expanding waistline.

to my friends and family that read this post before we've had the chance to call ... i'm sorry that you didn't hear this in person. i'm sorry that i've been so outright crazily busy that i haven't had the gumption to place a phone call to you. it's just that i needed to get my thoughts out on paper ... the internet ... i just needed to get these thoughts and feelings out of my wildly spinning mind. please know that i love you ... much. and i want you to call me and tell me that you'll go to the pool with me ... even though i'm going to look like a beached whale and i probably won't spend the money to buy a maternity suit by the end of the summer. i would really appreciate hearing that you will still love me ... even though you will no longer babysit for me.

and to my husband ... i'm sorry that i didn't check with you before i hit publish. i probably should have asked.

and to stella ... i'll try my hardest to ensure that you don't miss out on mommytime. and thank you for making me laugh tonight when you told cora that daddys have sprinkles that want to make babies with mommys eggs. because from now on ... i will only refer to them as sprinkles. it sounds so much better.

and to cora ... i'm sorry that i can't open up my tummy so that you can see the baby. but i love that you ask everytime that we are snuggled up together. soon enough darling. soon enough.

Friday, June 12, 2009

not here ... or here ... maybe there.

wow .. i write a post about being missing for a while ... and then i disappear for a while longer ...

seriously ... summer is busy.

and busier than usual.

in fact rather ... chaotic.

much happenings here in the coconutbelly household.

i'll explain ... later.

first i must go to a fancy wedding shindig ... at a hotel with a pool and water park ... where i will be sporting my new swimsuit coverup ... indication that i am forsure getting old (er). a hotel which is ohsoclose to a really awesome turquoise door that i want to take pictures of the girly-girls in front of.

and then back next week. upon which i might ... emphasis on the might ... have an opportunity to check in before we take off on our exciting ... way. too. long. of. a. car. ride. ... trip to arkansas. where i ... once again ... will be sporting the (my?) newest fashion of a swimsuit coverup. and my new skirts. and maybe my new dress. and my new haircut. and carrying the books that i checked out from the library for the occasion ... which my husband thinks is absolutely absurd! checking books out to read on a vacation!!! what if i loose them?


so tell me ... do you check out books for a vacation ... or do you just bring your own?


please give me some ideas of things to do on that VERY LONG CAR RIDE for my girls. please? mama needs a bit of inspiration. motivation. help.

send chocolate, if you can.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

and the winner is ,,,

sorry all. it was quite the day. not sure where the time went. loved listening to the rain on my roof. loved cuddling with the girls. enjoyed playing around with my stamps a little and creating these ...spent some time this evening swearing at my computer ... which is ...

s ... l ... o ... w ... e ... r ... ... ... t ... h ... a ... n ... ... ... a ... ... ... m ... u ... l ... e ... ... ... i ... n ... ... ... a ... ... ... h ... o ... r ... s ... e ... ... ... r ... a ... c ... e ... ... ...

which is ever so slightly funny ... because honestly ... even though i consider myself a past life horse woman ... i'm not REALLY sure if a mule would be slow when placed in the midst of a dozen or so thundering horses. but i DO know that mules are stubborn. aren't they? and i would be comfortable with the statement that my computer was being stubborn (and slow) today.

hence the major lack of photo editing ... go ahead ... crank your neck to the right and squint those eyes to see that last one. oh yeah ... and i'm in too suckitude of a mood to go back and find the actual photo that was a bit more clear. for your information ... it says wish. and it's a dandelion. and the second one? that says love. and it's a flower. (i'm aware that i haven't fully comprehended how hard to hit on the v with my itty bitty tiny uppercase font.)

oh and also ... these were just for play ... i realize that the "e" on my peace one is the wrong way. and that my peace sign sucks. (although peace ... doesn't suck.) totally aware of that. i was just playing around ... i'll perfect those later.

also more suckiness? rain. remember earlier when i mentioned that i love listening to the rain drops? i do. my garden was smiling today. my plants were lovin' the slow steady rain all. day. long. but the chance of getting shots of these necklaces on flowers (which had been my plan) ... nonexistent. so i had to compromise with a rock in my house. (yes, i have tons of rocks laying around my house, don't you?)

so ... where was i? oh yeah. the winner ...

#13 ... shangrila! ...
who said ...
"This summer I am looking forward to:
Having my baby girl home with me EVERY DAY,
Taking my fam to all of the MN family fun at the MN zoo, The Children's Museum, Como, The Science Museum, Insistute of Arts and MCAD, Children's and Stage's theaters, MOA, etc.,and
taking the trip to WA with my husband for my girlfriend's wedding at the beginning of Aug, and seeing Jason Mraz in concert w/my sisters at the end of August!"

and a side bonus to her winning? she lives super close to me (like just up the highway super close) ... and i might just have to hand deliver it to her! (in a safe public location with my husband and a police escort, of course, mom.) just kidding ... she has mentioned a liking/love of chai tea ... so i'm gonna beg her to meet me at my favorite restaurant.

(totally safe and public. and well decorated. not to mention awesome food. mmm ... edemame. and drink. especially the coconut cream chai. ooo. craving.)

um, jeremy? guess what i want for dinner on our date night on wednesday? oh ... you didn't know we were having a date night? well ... i guess we are just about due for one, huh?

and dad? can you babysit on wednesday night?

so ... email me, shangrila!(

g'nite all.

(and by the way ... i owe up for a pay it forward blog thing that i won from spriteskeeper awhile back ... if y'all are interested ... maybe i'll just offer 3 necklaces in a giveaway again ... soon.)

Friday, June 5, 2009

last chance!

have you entered the giveaway yet??
tonight at midnight ... i'm closing it down ... so hurry!
... click here ... (that means click on the words that say - click here -)

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

beauty ...

have you entered my giveaway yet? if not ... go here ... and enter ... after you read ... and comment here, first, of course.

i find myself ... often ... telling my girls they are beautiful.
i catch glimpses of them in the rearview mirror. their eyes a bright oceanic blue against their pink cheeks ... rosy from running and playing. i watch wisps of their blondish hairs sticking to their foreheads after they fall asleep. i see a perfectly placed shoulder blade jutting out from their back ... as they set forth in motion.

i don't know what it is about her shoulder blade. it's a ever-so-slightly weird fascination, isn't it?

i realize in those moments of truly seeing my children.
... i realize ... i created that.

i know i had some help.
but it astonishes me that my body could create something so beautiful.
but is it enough? for me to notice it? and make the remark?
is telling them that they are beautiful ... going to somehow make it more difficult ... as they grow? are they going to think that beauty is the epitome?
i don't ever want them thinking that beauty is everything.
it's not.
but at the very same time ... it is.

because ... it is everywhere. you just have to open your eyes ... and see beautiful things. you just have to open your ears ... and hear beautiful things. you just have to open your heart ... and find beautiful things.
and THAT. is something that i want my children to learn.

“Life is full of beauty. Notice it. Notice the bumble bee, the small child, and the smiling faces. Smell the rain, and feel the wind. Live your life to the fullest potential, and fight for your dreams.”
~Ashley Smith

i want them to realize that beauty exists everywhere ... and it is completely and utterly open to definition.
that beauty is somewhat undefinable in a broad sense.
but individually ... we can all find beauty in something.
only you can define what is beautiful for you.
i want my girly-girls to know that beautiful ... is more than just a visual representation of something. a beautiful person ... must be beautiful (and kind and giving and full of sunshine) in their actions.

that the simple act of putting on a skirt. or applying lipstick. or doing your hair. or getting your toenails painted.
doesn't make you beautiful.
but that you must show beauty. you have to help someone. or use kind words. or say hello. or give because you can. or love.
pure and simple.
be loving.

because i guess in the very grand scheme of things ... that i ultimately what i want.
and i may be greedy in my desire to accomplish this ... but i want my children to love. and be loved.

i want their hearts to be full. i want them to love everything that they put their soul into. i want them to enjoy every single minute of everything that they do. i want them to feel loved.
this quote ... feels like a good ending to a post that came out of nowhere. (and didn't really GO anywhere either.) because i think this is another struggle of mine right now ... spirituality. and how spirituality doesn't have to be religion. or it can be ... whatever you need it to be. similar to beauty. (and i realize that this entire thing was a random outpouring of thought and emotion ... but i needed to get it out there ... because after all i needed to know why i tell my girls that they are beautiful when there are so many other things i could say ... so ... thanks for listening.)
it is what it is. or that which you think it is.

Spirituality exists wherever we struggle with the issue of how our lives fit into the greater cosmic scheme of things. This is true even when our questions never give way to specific answers or give rise to specific practices such as prayer or meditation. We encounter spiritual issues every time we wonder where the universe comes from, why we are here, or what happens when we die. We also become spiritual when we become moved by values such as beauty, love, or creativity that seem to reveal a meaning or power beyond our visible world. An idea or practice is "spiritual" when it reveals our personal desire to establish a felt-relationship with the deepest meanings or powers governing life.
~Robert C. Fuller

but not really the ending ... because i realize i have one more thing to say.
i wish i knew how to say what i really want to say ... eloquently ...
i find myself ... often ... telling my girly-girls that they are beautiful. but i want them to realize that ... that single word ... possesses so much more than just a simple viewpoint of their appearance. it encompasses intelligence and thoughtfulness and emotion and gratitude and everything that makes them ... them.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

i {heart} faces ... happy birthday!

i'm entering this photo in the i {heart} faces ... happy birthday! photo contest ...

from stella's 5th birthday party ...
... caught in a moment of wish contemplation ...
i wish i knew what she had wished for.

i {heart} faces ... pet edition ...

i'm entering this photo of jazz ... in the i {heart} faces pet photo group ...
i may be biased ... but i think this is the most beautiful cat ... but, she also happens to be the sweetest kitty ...

it seems funny to have a cat that i found in the hay loft of the barn where i ... lived ... worked ... played for so many years. i remember popping her into my pocket while i worked with the horses. i remember her hissing at me before her eyes were even opened. she was the funniest shade of grey fuzz with long black hairs sticking out! and then she turned into this ... i think she is beautiful.

and now ... i sound like a crazy cat lady.