Monday, September 17, 2018


It's been a while since I've done a Lately post, which is usually just a mash up of what we've been up to in the past month or so, as well as a mash up of some random thoughts.

--We went to Gatlinburg in the Smokey Mountains at the end of summer right before school started up again and it's become one of our favorite family destinations. Also, it was definitely our best trip there yet! We went to Dollywood (again) and got to see Dolly Parton! In real life. They said there was a parade and Dolly would be in it. Turns out the "parade" was just Dolly in a carriage waving to people. That was the entire parade! Ha. But it was great, she is a legend.
--Also, Gatlinburg is known for it's high concentration of black bears and people often say that you can't go to Gatlinburg without seeing a bear. Well we've been a few times before and had never seen a bear, but on this trip we saw 4! Now a couple of the sightings were not that cool as they were bears digging through the garbage. BUT one bear was a pretty exciting and intense experience. We went on a family hike along a river trail (it was a nice trail that Lamp could take her power chair on which was really nice.) We saw quite a few people along the way, but it certainly wasn't crowded. We were pretty far up the trail when I notice a ranger walking very quickly toward us with an intense gaze and a large gun slinged across his shoulder. I quickly realize it's a tranquilizer gun and ask if everything is OK. He tells us there's been a bear sighting and half joking I ask if we can follow him. In a serious tone he tells us no. We turn to watch him walk the opposite direction and see a family that we had recently passed slowing walking backwards along the path, and then we see the bear! It was big! The ranger came back our way, told us stand all together, and to be very still and very quiet. The bear lumbered our general direction and the girls were freaking out a little bit. The ranger walks a little closer to him, takes aim and shoots the bear with the tranquilizer. The bear is hit and runs off away from all of us! Phew! It was a really intense few minutes and I'm SO GLAD a ranger showed up because I don't know what we would have done if we saw the bear on our own.

--My last note about Gatlinburg was how wonderful it was to have Lamp's new chair while we were there. The battery life on her old chair was getting pretty bad. On a good day it could last a school day (keeping in mind that the chair was turned off and not in use most of the day as she prefers to scoot around her classroom). We took her new chair to Dollywood and it lasted 8 hours and still had juice to go even longer. Also her chair goes so much faster than her last chair and she let's Zuzu ride on the back, so those two were zipping around Dollywood all day long and it was amazing! As Lamp recently said, this chair is a gift.

--School of course started in late August and once again I gave a presentation to Lamp's school about differences, but this time another mother joined me and we talked about her daughter as well. It went really well. I shared the outline of what I talk about in these presentations in my stories on Instagram and have it saved to my highlights. You can watch it here if you're interested and need or want to do a similar presentation.

--We've also been in full throttle mode with activities and I have a love/hate with this busyness. PSP has soccer and violin and in addition was just cast in her school's play! We're very excited for her and this new experience, but I have to remind myself that it's only for a couple months. Lamp is still taking piano, but now her teacher has added a vocal componant which she's very excited for as she loves to sing. Zuzu just started ballet and is loving it. You might remember that she was a ballerina last Halloween and has wanted to take ballet classes for a while. After her first day she said, "I've been dreaming of being a ballerina forever and forever and it finally happened today!" I'm dead.

--I chopped my hair off again! I now have what I consider a pixie cut. However some people think it's still a little long to be considered a pixie (Is there a regulation pixie length I don't know about? Ha!) BUT I do think it's still a little too long so I'm going to go back in and have it cut a little shorter. Even so, I'm really liking it so far. I know for some people this is no big deal, but I have never been hair brave and I have always been a long hair girl. Of course I cut it significantly last February so it didn't feel like quite such a huge leap, but two years ago I would have swore on a stack of holy books that I'd never get a pixie cut. Never say never right? (My inspiration look is here. Same woman, different look who inspired my first big haircut.)

--Also, it's my husbands birthday today. Since he's nearly 4 years younger than me he will always sound so young in comparison on his birthday. We went go cart racing Saturday night, so tonight will be pretty low key with crepes for dinner (his favorite) and German chocolate cake for dessert (also his favorite.) As far as gifts he is getting something he wants, but we keep reminding each other that the real gift is the house we bought for each other this year--ha! If it ever gets done. We're lucky to have this guy in our lives, he really is an amazingly smart, talented, kind and loving husband and father.

--Unless you live under a rock, you've probably read or seen headlines about Gabby Blair, aka DesignMom's, viral post about abortion rights the other day. It went viral, as it should have, because honestly it is brilliant. I don't think every single point is iron clad, but I don't think it matters. She turned this conversation on it's head and I'll never be able to think of it the same way again. Bravo Gabby!

--Lastly, I've been hearing a lot about Enneagram personality tests lately and I admit I'm intrigued. I'm thinking of taking this test that was recommended by some people in the know on a friend's facebook page. The idea (as I understand it) is that it's a personality test that is better at helping you navigate relationships--be they work, personal or otherwise--once you understand how your specific Enneagram relates to someone else's Enneagram. Whether or not this can be determined by a test I'm not sure, but I've always thought of personalities like chemicals--you might always be a hydrogen and have your own strenghts and weaknesses, but how those strengths and weaknesses play out will be different when paired with oxygen vs. nitrogen. What about you? Are you into Enneagram? What about the Meyer-Briggs? That was sorta the big one for us a decade ago and I always felt it was spot on (I was both an ISFP + ESFP--the artist or the entertainer.) Are you into Astrology? Or is it all a bunch of bologna?

Well that's about it for now. I'm excited to give you another house update soon, some good Fall/Halloween content as well. What have you been up to? No really, I'd love to hear. 



  1. I totally hear you on the busyness thing. I love for my kids to have cool opportunities, but I also like a lot of family and down time. It's such a tricky balance!

  2. Right now? Wide awake and nursing a newborn. We're adjusting to a new normal sround here, as we gage a thirteen day old baby boy, and an almost seven year old daughter. I am starting to recover from a difficult labour, and have been managing a wee bit of light cooking, reading, and journaling (often while breastfeeding). I have also been planning Halloween costumes, slthough I had to surrender my daughter's costume build to my older sister, as I don't have it in me to make a Captain Phasma costume this year. I can, however, make the baby a porg costume out of a bunting suit, so I have that bit of creativity to look forward to between now and October 31.

    1. And with late night nursing comes typos. Oh dear.

    2. Oh those sweet blessed, tiring newborn days. Bless you mama. And good for you for handing the costume over to your daughter.

  3. Nice to always here what’s happening. I wonder if you’ve heard of Chris Koch, a Canadian limb difference guy who is an inspiration speaker. He’s got upper arms and only one backwards foot. He had a TED talk and I follow him on fb cause this summer he travelled across Canada simply by the kindness of strangers so that was neat.

    1. No I haven't heard of him... I'll be sure to check him out. I love that he travelled across Canada solo! And armed (pun intended) only with the help of strangers.