Unique and Findable

This Sunday is Mother’s Day. Each year it feels like just another day to me. I think of my mom and grandma and it makes me sad, and then that just feels like a waste of time. Last year and again this year I think about my sister and how much she loves motherhood (well most of the time I think). I love watching her with Charlie. It is like she has settled into herself in a way that feels almost impossible to explain. It suits her. Her admiration for that little bambino is awe-inspiring to watch, and she always has Charlie’s best interest in mind.

Last week I saw the most precious video on motherhood, and wanted to share for all those moms, grandmas, and sisters who mother. It is a video that shows that we are all truly unique, whether it is our smell, skin, or hair. Somehow these little ones know what is important. Even blindfolded they know what home means, they know who their mother is, and watching it unfold is priceless.

Make sure to tell your mom or grandma or sister how much they mean to you this Sunday (or every day). If you are nearby touch their skin and hair, make physical contact and connect with them in a deep way. You might not be three years old, but I am sure they will feel just as honored as these mothers did…

 

A giggle, a cackle, a gut-deep laugh

I love hearing laughter, especially the full body kind that you can feel in your bones, that can be contagious. I love hearing my niece laugh. I am adamantly addicted to her and cannot go for more than a month or so without seeing again. She is growing up so fast. I vicariously see her through the videos my sister sends to me. She sent me a video of Charlie a few days ago (at 13 months) trying to put on her socks and shoes. She was like her Aunt Tami — relentless. She just kept trying and trying. It was so precious to watch her try to fit the shoe on her foot, and then open the velcro, and then when that still did not go on her foot, she tried her socks.

I am head over heels in love with that little munchkin, and one of the things I love most is her deep and utterly free laugh. So when I saw this video of this baby and dog, I instant thought of past videos of Charlie. The squeals of joy that come out of that baby!

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What is not to love? Especially how similar it is to a much younger version of Charlie (maybe at 6 months)? I also included it below.

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Irresistible right? I just want to eat her up. While I do not get to see her every day, I wonder as she gets older if it will be harder and harder to get her to giggle like that from head to toe. If only we could all giggle and laugh like that throughout our day. We got a bit slap happy at a work meeting yesterday where a few of us had tears in our eyes from laughing, but that at times is the closest we get to that uncontrollable laughter of a baby when they find something funny. Let’s try to laugh more.

Our toys have gotten shitty

Our niece turned one year old a few weeks ago. We decided to send a few toys and one of them was reminiscent of our childhood. Do you remember the Fisher Price Little People Farm? It had a barn door, and when you opened it, it mooed like a cow. There were other farm animals, a fence, and a grain tower. There was a little window at the top of the barn that opened and you could put the little people in there so they could look at the farm where the bales of hay were stored. Ahh….memories.

So a few weeks ago we are in California at Charlie’s house, and the Little People Farm comes out, and we are flabbergasted. The thing is a cheap piece of crap. The barn doors do not open. There is no mooing noise. The little people are not little. The animals are funky looking and fat and their legs do not bend or move. The fence is chintzy. We spent over $40 on hoping to create our childhood memories for Charlie and find that she got the raw end of the deal. It was horrid.

I want to send a note to Fisher Price and ask what they were thinking. Her barn – well the top comes off. No noises come from the farm, and honestly it just looks like a barn lunch pail. Saddened that such a shitty birthday gift made it on her doorstep (compliments of Amazon), we later found a toy store and had fun seeing what fascinated her. In the end we found a cute bowling set up of animals, and had fun having her roll the ball to knock them over. What child does not love knocking over anything? I have to say, I am not biased or anything, but Charlie is damn good at kicking a ball.

After some online research, I found the original Fisher Price Little People Farm going for over $100. Seriously? Fisher Price needs to go back to its roots and produce a toy that lasts as long as the one I used to play with — I mean it lived in the nursery of my church for years and years. Bring back your vintage farm. It was worth it just to hear the moo when you opened the door.

#Childhoodnostalgia

Charlie’s First Birthday

I can hardly believe that a year has gone by since my niece was born. I am an addicted aunt. She was walking around nine months, already knows how to clap, blow kisses, and is the silliest of kids (most likely thanks to her fun daddy). If only we lived closer.

To Charlie: “We would come and play with you, and take out your favorite red car (stroller), so you can babble and wave to everyone you pass. We would play the synthesizer together, and build with blocks, and make sure there are fun rides on your new cow (toy). Aunt Tami would be loud and make lots of noise to get you to laugh, and Uncle Chris would be the mellow man that he is and sit and play with you (quietly, unlike Aunt Tami).

You have a heart filled with so much love. I know it after hearing the stories about how you hug other kids and do not want to let go. You are so loved — we can tell from your day care pictures of all the kids surrounding you and calling you Char Char. Never a dull moment in your life. You love your cats, and mommy’s iPad and iPhone. Last but not least you are a sassy little one, just like your Aunt. We could never ask for anything more.

Happy 1st Birthday Charlie!”

Here are a few of my favorite photos of the year. You can see how much she has grown. Charlie, cannot wait to see what your next year will bring!

random olio 2014

It has been a full year. I traveled to Shanghai, Chicago, Oakland a few times, to LA, Bend, oh the list goes on. I went to a few weddings, luckily no funerals. I worked countless hours in the office, and at home on my couch. I visited my niece, Facetimed with her and my sister, and missed them in between. We saw family, friends, and played on our own a bit in other parts of the country and the world. I went No Poo in 2014, and then started using loo poo shampoo and wash my hair a lot less often.

We tried new things, thought about the past, and planned and brainstormed the future. We laughed, cuddled, giggled, listened, gave advice, learned a lot, and cherished each other more. Like I said, it was a full year. Here is my list of favorite random olio posts of 2014. In no specific oder:

  1. No Poo
  2. Ten Things About My Dad
  3. Giggle ’til you pee your pants
  4. Want to Laugh Today?
  5. He is My Person
  6. Listen More, Talk Less
  7. My niece is da bomb
  8. I heart SH: Food Nostalgia
  9. She flies with her own wings
  10. A little dabble in wax…

Most read posts on Random Olio in 2014:

I hope you enjoyed all you read on random olio this year. Be grateful for all that you have done, all that you have, and all that you have learned. Life is good, we just have to see what is right in front of us. Thank you for continuing to read random olio. Here is to a full, alive, and adventurous 2015!