Monday, December 17, 2012

Mirabelle • One Month

A month can pass with hardly any notice. Hours and days blur together, and it's not due to lack of sleep, although I'm still utterly exhausted most days. Mirabelle sleeps almost through the night (Hallelujah).  I'm re-learning how to be a stay-at-home mom. It's silly to even say, is HARD. And moms around the world knowingly nod their heads with me. I nonetheless feel completely blessed and complete. What a difference she has made in our lives. What delight and wonder her blue eyes hold and share.

And I finally posted a video.

Birth story to be shared next!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Vitamins & Sleep

If you are feeling depressed and you can't pinpoint why, consider the possibility that you just need to take some vitamins. Also consider what basic needs are not being met...such as sleep. It's amazing what these two factors contribute to our mindset and overall disposition. This has been an important lesson for me with all the changes my body goes through - growing babies, nursing babies, not nursing anymore, growing another baby, and so on (hormonal changes aren't limited to puberty and menopause?!). So  when I started wallowing in self pity last night when I couldn't think of a good username for a Pinterest account, I said to myself, "Jess…you didn't take your prenatal vitamin today and past experience tells me that when you miss a day on those vitamins you are not yourself. Besides, evenings are always hard for you mentally as it is. You just need to take your vitamins and get some sleep."

The whole evening I felt pretty down and out but decided not to drag my husband into it with some lengthy, tear-filled discussion on my identity and what is it really that makes me any different or unique to anyone else in this world and why do I feel so boring??

Hallelujah, morning came. Despite a rough start to the morning (spilled cereal and poopy pants...not mine), I managed to make it to work feeling like my normal self. In fact within an hour at the office I was feeling pretty optimistic and energetic. I'm so thankful I have this awareness of my mental/emotional limitations when my physical needs are not met. This will take me far…and my marriage as well, I'm sure. The awareness doesn't make you suddenly able to shrug things off. It's just helpful in maintaining self control. Rationalizing never makes the emotions go away. But it helps you look at them more objectively and find solid ways to manage them.

There's my advice to any woman going through hormonal changes (does it ever end?). Take some vitamins and sleep. Eating healthy and exercising is probably important too. But I can't do everything all the time, sheesh.

By the way….23 days 'til baby girl's due date. :)

Friday, September 28, 2012


Flex by jezzi_noom
Flex, a photo by jezzi_noom on Flickr.
A serious favorite this year. There just isn't a good enough caption.

Friday, August 10, 2012

What? Web Design?

I designed my first website.

I didn't build it, mind you, because UGM now has an in-house digital media dude (Yaaay, James!). He took my design and totally made it happen. We're working out the kinks and have some great new plans for the UGM's online future.

The crazy thing is that I really enjoyed myself in the process. I've always been drawn to print media more than web and really didn't have much interest in learning the world of web design. I apparently don't know myself that well. CSS and HTML still sound overwhelming for my already-tired brain, but what I really enjoyed was building the concept and imagining what it would look like.

Of course I enjoyed myself. My passion for excellent visual communication is only growing, and web design is just another opportunity to do just that. What's even better though, is having a team of creative thinkers to give you feedback and ideas to improve the idea and help it succeed. We have such a great team here at UGM. It's always such a relief and excitement to see a project this big come to fruition and then watch what becomes of it.

Take a look around the site and let me know what you think!

Friday, May 25, 2012

So I Can Remember

I'm 16 weeks pregnant with little to no time to reflect or make special notes about what makes this pregnancy unique. I kept a pregnancy and first year baby book for both Oliver and Benjamin. It was more difficult with Benjamin to keep records, and it's even more difficult now. I want to show this little one that I paid attention and dreamed about meeting him or her, but mostly I want to remember.

Things are different, that's for sure. I'm less anxious about the pregnancy and delivery. I've only partially given up coffee. I don't drink it in the mornings, but I'll occasionally have a cup in the afternoon when exhaustion starts to take over. Reading blogs on Google Reader has taken the place of morning coffee. My wheels start turning and it gets my mind off of warm blankets and comfy pillows.

One funny quirk that has never happened to me is that I have to check the calendar every week to remember how far along I am. I hesitate when people ask me. Yesterday I told someone I was 20 weeks. Hahaha. It really is too bad that a woman's brain has to shrink during pregnancy. It's an "unavoidable biological phenomenon."

I can't remember if I was this emotional for my other pregnancies. But anything and everything will put a lump in my throat and bring tears to my eyes. I'm actually enjoying it because the last one and a half years I found it hard to cry at all, even when I wanted to. Maybe being the only girl in the house is toughening me up a bit, I don't know. But I started to miss being able to let it all out and then move on. When I don't cry, the emotions linger way too long and I just get grumpy.

I'm experiencing a strong desire to be domestic and my daily desires revolve around baking, keeping house and taking my kids to the library or park. My eyes sting with tears of envy when I hear about moms who work their butts off cleaning the house and preparing lunches. This is the hardest part about pregnancy because I do not have the energy for housework or cooking when I get home from work. I collapse on the couch and try to be enthusiastic for the kids. They're very sweet about it and are usually satisfied with cuddling in the hammock outside or reading books when I get home.

I'll just let another tear fall, roll my eyes at myself and half-laugh. Here's a dreamy (at least to me) poem I read during my morning ritual today from my favorite blog as of late, Mama:Monk.

Finding A Long Gray Hair
by Jane Kenyon
I scrub the long floorboards
in the kitchen, repeating
the motions of other women
who have lived in this house.
And when I find a long gray hair
floating in the pail,
I feel my life added to theirs.

Oh, and according to The Bump, little baby is the size of an avocado. That's cute.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012


I'm taking a blog sabbatical. One of my New Year's resolutions is to write letters instead of blog posts. I think if I do post anything here it will be short and sweet. I want to encourage relationship and be more open and vulnerable with the people in my life. Blogging is a very "open" avenue to reflect, I suppose, but has a pretty broad audience with hardly any real, personal connection. And I've found that having an audience often feels safer for me than interacting one-on-one with someone (although the opposite is more likely true). Maybe later in the year I'll get gutsy and start calling people on the phone. Eeek.

Really...I'm not a hermit. But the internet has sure given me some habits I'm not so fond of.