Posts That I Need to Do if I Ever Get the Time

1.) The Birth Story of Marissa

2.)  How the First Three Weeks of Motherhood Sucked So Badly

3.)  How Freakin’ Cute My Kid Is

4.)  The 10 Books I Plan on Writing that are better than any other sucky pregnancy/baby book out there.

And Here I Thought 2010 Couldn’t be Topped

So it’s been a big year.  I started off the year deciding that it was time to leave the program I’d been working on for 5 years and venture into Program Management.  The week before I started the new job I took a little pregnancy test (well, I took two because I wasn’t smart enough to read the first one) and realized that it probably wasn’t the best time to change jobs, but alas, I had already signed on the dotted line. 

So 2011 was pretty much the year that started out with vomiting and ended with the best thing that has ever been in my life.  I look back on the other years in my life and although many were wonderful, none of them even come close to this year.  Nothing in my life even comes close to the way I feel when I hold our little girl and see her pretty little smile.  Or here her coo.  She has brought so much to my life but the greatest thing that has come out of having her is my sense of self. 

I used to feel awkward at parties, feel like I had to hang on to Mircea or another friend, or draw attention to myself with my big mouth.  I was recently at a party and I just sort of hung out in the corner, but I was smiling and enjoying those around me.  Having Marissa brought me this sense of wholeness and completeness.  I don’t need to impress anyone, I don’t need to be anyone in particular.  I need to be a good whole person and provide a loving, nurturing home for my daughter.  That’s it.  It’s not that she’s my entire world, and it’s not that she provides me with my sense of self, but having her made me realize what is truly important.  It’s important that I get up and go to work so I can make money and have a sense of accomplishment in my day.  It’s important that I drive safely so I can be there for my family.  Along those same lines, it’s important that I diet and exercise to extend my life.  The most important thing to me now is being a whole person so that I can be 100% for my daughter.  And it’s a good feeling to know that I only have to answer to three beings:  God, myself, and Little Marissa.  Everyone else in my life are the cherries on top.

So while 2010 was a great year, 2011 trumped it by a million and 2012, well, if the world doesn’t end, I think you’re going to be the best year yet. 

Happy New Year!

2010: I Love You THIS Much

I’m a little late writing my Year in Review, but that isn’t a surprise this year. In fact, I have been a little late with a lot of things, or I’ve completely dropped the ball. For those of you that usually received Christmas cards from me, you’ll notice that this year you didn’t see a cup of cheer in your mailbox. For this I apologize. The funny part of it is that I got about half of them done but I was too lazy to finish the other half. And then I felt guilty that only the first half of the alphabet would get them and I didn’t want to play favorites. So I plan on changing my “best wishes for a 2011” to “2012” and hopefully the change from a 1 to a 2 won’t look too messy. Thanks to all of you who took the time to send one to me and the hubby.

I’ve seen a lot of Facebook statuses from people who were happy to have 2010 behind them and ready to move on to 2011. 2010 has been the best year of my life. Not just because I married the man of my dreams (and of my nightmares, don’t worry) this past March but because I finally, FINALLY, feel comfortable with the person I am and I’ve come to terms with my past and I’m looking forward to my future. No more crazy emotions, etc., and no letting my romantic relationships rule my life. I think it’s about time that I had that healthy attitude, but no regrets; it’s here now. So without further ado, here are my top 5 positives of 2010, in no particular order.

Building a closer relationship with my friends Robyn and Rebecca
Even though the circumstances and the timing weeren’t the best for us, 2010 has brought me so much closer to two of my closest friends. I feel so lucky to have these two women who I admire both personally and professionally in my life and I look forward to sharing more experiences with them.  From drunkedly “setting fire” to my house to crying in each others’ arms at Eat Pray Love, we’ve had a roller coaster year filled with sadness, tears, laughter and new experiences.  To many more!

Getting Married
I have always wanted to get married…but it was always for the wrong reasons. I wanted to get married so I could achieve what I felt to be the ultimate acceptance. Thank God I realized how ridiculous that was BEFORE we got married because that is NOT a reason to get married. It’s a nice benefit of getting married, but there are no guarantees in life so that really shouldn’t be the reason. I’m happy to have married someone who I love, respect and appreciate. The greatest moment of my life to this point was exchanging vows with Mircea in St Lucia. I am so incredibly happy with him and the life we are building together.

Philly visit with Nikki
While I’ve singled out a couple of good friends in this year in review there are so many that are getting left out. I’m just hitting the highest points where there was a blatantly obvious moment. When my friend Nikki visited me this summer I just felt…great. It was so nice to spend time with someone who has known me since I was a little kid and who still loves me despite my misspent youth. I did her wrong several times when we were growing up and I’m not sure what the motivations were (it might have been a function of being a 4th grader, I just don’t know) but it still hurts my heart to think that I was mean to someone I love so much. Sadly this was a pattern of my youth but for reasons I come by honestly I’ve forgiven myself for these transgressions. Nikki’s visit was a reminder that redemption is a wonderful thing and that I deserved it. It was so nice to rekindle the friendship that was always there, separated by miles, and when we got together again it was like we hadn’t missed a beat. I look forward to her visiting this year and hopefully she and I will spend equal amounts of time trying out beer and food in our town, this time to be complete with a concert from U2.

Taking Advice
One of the best things I did this year was take some advice from a counselor that I had seen off and on over the years. As we discussed the issues that bothered me about myself and my life she quietly suggested that I might want to consider an anti depressant. Depressed? No, not me. I’m happy go lucky, with a side of snark and angst for good measure. Yes, me. I thought that an antidepressant would change me from the person that I am. A brief foray into Prozac after my mother died stripped me of all emotions. I couldn’t even cry as I mourned my Mom-not cool. However, this time I around I entered the idea of medication with a positive outlook and an open mind. And it has made all the difference. Paired with quiet time and a little prayer, Zoloft has been a Godsend for me and has allowed me to “take the edge off” of things that had been bothering me in the past. I just don’t have the crazy mood swings that would spiral me into saying things I didn’t mean, or picking fights because I was used to it. I’m just me. The Kate that I remember before I let my insecurities get the better of me, the one that others always described as “sweet, caring, and funny”, not the way exes described me “scary, mean, always crying, and dead-sexy”. The only reason I am sharing something so personal is that I want to be honest and say that I was terrified to try this because “I’m not weak, I can take care of this myself” is a ridiculous excuse. A good diet, exercise, supportive friends and family and a few milligrams of “the good stuff” have made me feel like a million bucks.

Adding to our family
And not the way you think. As much as I’ve always wanted children and talked a big game about how much I want them, I’m not ready yet. I’m terrified of all that having children entails, so there are no official “baby-making” plans. (Sorry Dad and Vicki, you’ll be grandparents at some point, I promise). Right now, the newest additions to our family as the ones that are bringing me so much joy I can’t even stand it. Though it started out as a mess, having Blackie and Benny (in addition to our perfect Yukon) has been the greatest thing to us. Our house feels like a home now, and Mircea and I are so much happier with each other too. It’s so silly how our little four legged friends bring us great joy and we’re turning into “those people” who say “my dog did this”. Well, we were always those people; it just started with “my cat did this”. We got lucky with the two that found their way into our hearts. Blackie is just the sweetest thing ever, very protective of our home and very loving. Benny is the silliest little ball of cute that ever existed. He does the wackiest things; in fact, I’m one of the few people who can actually say that their dog brought them flowers.

So that’s it, there’s my year in review, the happiest year of my life to date. There are wonderful things I’m looking forward to in 2011 and I can’t wait to continue enjoying the ride that is my life. Being Kate is finally just, well, great!

Our Ugly Children: Hopefully Not a Sign of the Future

I hope this is the only time I ever have a post of this title but according to The Bump Baby Morpher my kids are going to be woodland creatures.  I am scared of these children.  They aren’t severely deformed, but they aren’t very cute…at all.  And they have very poor taste in fashion.  What do you think of these ugly ducklings?  Do you see a swan in there?   I’m pretty pleased to say that our daughter here has picked up the bags under my eyes, but she also managed to pick up some of Mircea’s stubble.  Dead sexy!  Our son has his own issues…mostly in his teeth.  Lord, I hope those are baby teeth. 

Our daughter

Our Son

A Little Over Reaction (Kate-Style)

I have a bone to pick with Beloit College. While I appreciate the theory behind publishing their annual Mindset List, I find that they are forgetting the big picture here. Many of these items are only true if you’ve lived in a box only watching Channel One since birth (Hello, Anderson Cooper) and not allowed to attend public school, where you watched Channel One, so basically there is NO WAY IN THE WORLD that these are true. Ok, maybe if you were the control group for a scientific experiment where you are only allowed to learn current events, but even then, it’s a bit sketchy.

Other than a few forwarded emails from Baby Boomers trying to prove that my generation is a group of morons, I have never seen the official list before and I’m almost appalled that it exists. It would probably be more interesting if I commented on specifics from the list (I might just do that at the end) but what I really want to comment on is that these two professors actually think this is true and are propagating this info around the world. (They know about it in New Zealand, I have proof). I chose to comment on my college graduating class as my experiences are most accurate for that year. What bothers me is that while there is a kernel of truth to many of these things, I guess I consider myself lucky that my parents didn’t raise me with blinders on and I was taught to learn from the past to avoid making mistakes in the future. Of course I know Reagan was shot (2), I don’t know the exact minute in my life that I learned it, but I sure as hell knew about it before I went to college. We may not remember seeing the Challenger explode (8), but Punky Brewster told us all about it and we probably even cried along with her. Never heard of Pong (15)? Are you kidding me? More like “played Atari for hours on end at Jessy’s house until her mom made us stop for being too loud” and “learned everything I know about driving from playing Lemans”. And if you haven’t heard of this stuff you could at least get a pretty good idea from watching Family Guy.

They also seem to think that our parents were made out money too. Since CDs were invented when we were a year old (19) it is ridiculous to think that we might know what a record player (12, 13, 14), tape player or 8-track (18) is. No, I didn’t have cable until we lived in Elkhart (23), yes, I had a black and white tv (22), we didn’t always have a remote (and b/c I was young and spry I had to change the dials)(25), and I remember when we finally got an answering machine and we thought we were soooo cool. I guess the reason this bothers me so much is that I feel like our parents aren’t being given enough credit here. Ok, so maybe I never pulled off a pull top tab on a soda (11) but two years ago I bought a Jumex juice in the Latino foods aisle and it had the same technology so I know what the heck it is. The moral of the story is called EDUCATION. To me it seems like these list creators just want to make fun of the technology that our generations have held onto, but they do it in mocking tone and it basically makes me think that they are the idiots. Am I way off here? I’m not actually mad about this, but I find it pretty ridiculous and shallow and way off base. This is pop culture and Americana and its upsetting to me that CNN had a link to this list. This is far from credible, but it won’t be the first time you hear me say that about CNN.

**and yes, I’m grasping at straws for blog topics. There aren’t even current events that I want to get all snarky on. Man I need to have a kid so I can at least dazzle you with adorable child pictures.

That Perfect Song

We’ve probably all tried it once in our lives-making the perfect mixed tape, cd, “mixer”, playlist, etc., but I’ve always found that a few weeks after I’ve made it, some of the songs bore me and I find myself skipping through to listen to two or three of my selections.  This of course drives me wild and I’m thankful that the iPod technology exists and I don’t have to trash my cd and start all over again, but it got me thinking about the songs that I could really listen to over and over again and that I don’t ever feel compelled to skip.  In fact, sometimes, I’ll start the song over right before the end just so I can hear it again.  And singing along?  Hells yeah.  “Top-volume-on-the-American-Idol-stage-tears-streaming-voice-cracking-with-emotion” singing.  That kind.

I’ve thought about it for quite some time and here is my pick for perfect song.

Jimmy Eat World: 23

I love the lyrics for this song. The words seem so heartfelt and personal to the singer. I think we’ve all been “23” at some point in our lives, no matter how old we are.

Amazing still it seems
I’ll be 23
I won’t always love what I’ll never have
I won’t always live in my regrets

So what’s your song? What gets you going, brings out emotions, or keeps you energized long after you’ve heard it? Why do you love it? Does it transport you back to a specific moment in your life? Your turn to share!

Welcome to Being Kate

I felt that it was time for a fresh new start.  I promise the only other time I’m going to change my blog is if I have like 10 kids and want to start blogging about their misadventures, so you can make a bookmark for Being Kate and it will stay that way.  It may not be the best grammar, but it’s my blog and I’ll do what I want. 

As I’m turning 30 this week, I am truly looking forward to this next decade and the many more to come.  My 20’s were an interesting ride, full of ups and downs, twists and turns and many, many lessons learned.  This decade is an opportunity to put all of those lessons into practice and focus on the positive.  I’ve learned so much about myself as a person and I look forward to growing us a person, a wife, and hopefully a mother.  As most of you know, I’ve never shied away from the truth and I’m definitely enjoy sharing my life with others and building relationships even though we may be far apart.

I hope you’ll enjoy the blog, I’m going to make every attempt to post more often and provide interesting topics for discussion.  I intend on sharing some healthy (and maybe some not so healthy) recipes, some workouts, and general news.  Hopefully I can meet new people and continue the wonderful friendships I’ve built over the years through this blog.

(You’ll notice that I’ve combined all of my blogs over the past several years…including my awesome wedding blog where I showcased my absopositively perfect nuptials.  Hopefully as the posts continue I can organize them a bit better. )

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