Family

pin it sundays: mah day

by lizzie & isaiah on May 8, 2011 · 9 comments

Isaiah and I recently moved into my mom’s guest house to be closer to work, save money for the wedding and a house and just enjoy general togetherness for a while. The experience of moving, hunting for furniture and needing a little help is showing me all over again how amazing my mom is. She works between 50-80 hours a week. She cooks, she finds time to hunt for us on Craigslist (found us a few pret-ty awesome finds for our place), she thinks of us often while garage sailing and grocery shopping and she listens while we talk 100 mph at night about our day and how awesome/frustrating/numbing/unusual our days were.

It’s been much needed. We’re both in a “need our moms” kind of phase…and I’m pretty pumped to be living so close (backyard) to mine.

Isaiah and I both get along famously with each other’s moms and our own. They’re so radically different, both beautiful, both extremely wise and talented in different ways. It’s been great having “2 moms” so far. One of them always the answer to everything.

Here’s hoping everyone has a mom or “mom-ish” person who’s exactly who you need her to be. Because if you don’t, we might lend you ours.

Image: Illustration by Brooke Weeber found on Pinterest. Visit her Etsy shop: Little Canoe.

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the story of wishbone

by lizzie & isaiah on February 5, 2011 · 14 comments

wishbone jack russell terrier

My family used to show horses competitively. The circuits always have the same trainers, the same families and the occasional new horse…Oh, and the puppies. Loads of puppies.

I was nine. The Skellys were regulars, like we were, and they had a little coup of five or six “purebred” jack russell terriers. There was another regular barn there as well with a whippet boy that kept sniffing around the puppies and the mama and we didn’t think anything of it at the time.

wishbone puppy dog

At nine, I didn’t have much in the way of dignity. I sat in the corner of an empty stall where the dirt from the day was turning into muddy streaks down my face. “He’s only $75, mom…dad talked them down.” I was a master bargainer with my father’s help, who always seemed to take my side…at the time, I’m sure my manipulative 9-year-old wrath was more of a deterrent than my mom’s, which had been trained to be decent in public.

I picked the runt of the litter and named him Wishbone, aptly, though it’s been embarrassing to say in public ever since. “I was nine…when I got him…” I always used to make excuses.

Our little lap-dog kept growing until he stood above our knees, the medium-sized dog we never expected. Also, not a purebred, as you might have guessed, though that has never mattered.

puppy dog nose

The $75 puppy that I was convinced was a bargain, talked down from $200, has cost my family more than $10,000 in his 14-year existence so far…that numbers still rising. When he was a puppy, he had a thing for drywall…as in, eating straight through it to the concrete, scratching deep holes in the wall. He could have been Houdini’s apprentice – the dog can open doors, cabinets, get on the kitchen counter, lift a 6′x9′ chain-link dog run clear off the ground.

When we moved into a new house, he would be waiting for us in the garage, ready to run, when we got home. “Wishbone! Wait…Wishbone? How are you outside?” Thousands of dollars of damage later, we still love this little pup.

He’s always had epilepsy, which is equal parts hilarious and completely terrifying. He’s 14. He’s also always had that uber-dry cracked-earth nose you see, he won’t let us put anything on it…he’ll eat through anything to get his nose clean and dry again.

wishbone jack russell terrier mix

Anyways, he let me take a few photos the other day, which he never does. He’s always licking the camera to get to my face while I try not to think about where his puppy tongue’s been (shudder).

We’ve been spending a lot of time at my mom’s house and being with Wishbone every weekend has been a huge perk. My mom’s looking for a little companion for him now. He’s always hated other dogs, but he hates being alone more. Between you and me, he’s quite the ladies man. My aunt and uncle brought their clutch-sized shih tsu, Lulu, over one Christmas and he followed her around like he was courting her. There was no humping, don’t worry, only cudding…and it was the cutest thing I’ve seen ever.

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it is my birthday (period).

by lizzie & isaiah on January 22, 2011 · 31 comments

happy birthday horse candle cake

It’s my birthday.

I’m pretty stoked. I should start by telling you that I started out with a bang in the birthday department. My parties when I was a little babeh got increasingly more awesome until they started being pretty anti-climactic around 14.

Once my mom had 15 eight-year-olds crowding her living room in neatly laid out sleeping bags where we all watched a magician pull a rabbit out of a hat. How cute are rabbits? We all thought. Until the little hopper was leaving little nerdlets around our sleeping bags and one of us realized too late, “What’s this?” Screams. Many, many screams.

I might have been nine-or-ten when my mom packed six of my closest friends together and carted us to the city where the new American Girl Place was. It’s not just about dolls, if you didn’t partake in the phenomenon. The store was filled with antique ice-cream parlors, adorable stores, a delish restaurant and a photo studio for you and your dolls (sounds so much less cool now that I’m sharing it). That may have been my last awesome birthday party. Everyone was getting meaner…including me…we froze a girl’s training bra that night and I could tell my mom was concerned about the effect of group think on me.

My birthdays have since involved being surrounded by close friends and family – the way it should be. Usually I get to pick the movie (not always, boooo!) and my mom cooks my favorite dinner or we pick a restaurant together.

There’s something you should know about me: I get really excited about birthdays. Not just my own…no birthday gift has ever kept its “surprise!” status within a month of the date…But I started getting excited about my birthday in December. I’m 23. It’s embarrassing. I even try to force down any feelings of excitement – it’s just the day I was born, there’s not gonna be a big party this year, RELAX YOU NERD YOU’RE MAKING ME LOOK BAD! Well, I don’t yell at myself, but you know what I mean.

I came across this entry from a blog-ghost from my past – the forgotten MySpace blog – about my 20th birthday (three years ago) where I was apparently reading far too much Sylvia Plath and questioning the reason of my existence. It’s okay, 20-year-old Lizzie…it’s just a birthday.

There is something strange about a birthday. You’re celebrating the day you came tearing through your mother’s hips and took your first placenta-filled breath in this somewhat empty world. Newborns don’t know what this earth is like. If they did, I’m sure most of them would have yelled “Put me back,” crawled back to the womb and stuck their recently-formed thumbs in their mouths and just chilled for the rest of eternity. But mothers and doctors know that life has plenty of wonderful things to offer, so they yank the baby out by the head, slap it’s bottom and cut it’s belly button in their first “birth day” celebration of pain and confusion.

There’s nothing so beautiful as a newborn to everyone around them, however. Everyone else is celebrating life and beauty. Life is like this, I’ve decided. When you are feeling filled with pain and desperation, the world knows it’s something beautiful, it’s a celebration of a step forward, progress.

So it’s my birthday.

Twenty years ago today, I was a confused, blood-covered sea-monkey. Happy Birthday.

Pfft. Drama queen.

Well, this year I’m pumped. I’m embarrassingly, nerdily stoked to celebrate another year, however anti-climactic the number 23 might be. I’ll probably jump around all day singing “Hey-Hey-Hey-It’s-My-Birthday!” and I don’t want anyone to try to stop me.

Image found via Pinterest from Flickr.

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a quiet christmas

by lizzie & isaiah on December 28, 2010 · 19 comments

mailing letters classic Christmas photo rain snow little children

mailing letters

We had grand plans this year. Plans to make the 18-hour-in-perfect-weather-trek to Chicago. Plans to hop-skip-jump to Ohio to see my dad for the first time in three years. Our holiday traditions have always included hustle-bustle that reminds me of all of the we-slept-in moments from the Home Alone movies.

Plans change.

We celebrated Christmas at home this year. We played Wii (my first time – that’s what she said), ate far too much food and focused on being here. Isaiah and I had some nice, quiet moments together, which is rare for the holidays.

The past few months have been trying. My family is going through a bit of a hard time and it’s been years since I can remember a calm, peaceful Christmas. Happy Christmases abound, but quiet and peace are usually not part of the equation.

I’ve graduated. The interview madness starts next week. This week has truly been the welcomed calm before the storm.

I missed snow this year. Celebrating Christmas on a gloomy, rainy day is not something I’d like to do every year; however, for this year, it suited us. Sometimes you just need a quiet, rainy day and 35,000 calories to regroup.

I hope that you enjoyed your holidays, had some peace — with or without quiet — and are looking forward to a great, new year.

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Geek Out: My Family Edition

December 1, 2010

In all honesty, as much as I lean toward optimism to a fault, sometimes I massively underestimate my family. I love them. I always love them. Some members of my family have this habit of saying what they’re thinking, even if it’s unnecessary and hurtful. As the most talkative one of the bunch, I’m often the target [...]

19 comments you know you wanna read more..

On Getting Given Away

November 6, 2010

My dad and I have this unusual connection. Before I tell you about that…let me tell you a bit about why I decided to write this post. If you haven’t read Sarah’s blog, take a break from this post to check it out. Her six-year-old daughter answers questions on the blog as the Tiny Wedding [...]

17 comments you know you wanna read more..

In-Law Trauma Sets In…When?

October 2, 2010

{Isaiah’s beautiful mom with his adooorable two sisters. Felicia, the youngest, just turned 18 yesterday, so this photo is a bit older} Isaiah and I often consider ourselves lucky. Aside from feeling very lucky to have found one another, we don’t have any problems with our future in-law families. Perhaps it’s because we’re not married [...]

10 comments you know you wanna read more..