Friday, November 23, 2012

gratitude is a state of mind

while i appreciate the attention that gratitude is getting on this day of the year, i can't stop to think that being grateful should be a full time endeavor.  we went to the waldorf school elves' faire last weekend and a cute elf came up to us at our table while we were eating lunch and presented us with a basket.  she said:  "choose a fortune."  bea reached her little hand in, still sticky from vegan beans and rice, and pulled out a tiny scroll with a tiny ribbon around it.  i helped her carefully unroll it.  in lovely calligraphy it read:

gratitude is riches.  complaint is poverty.

our life is so rich.  we have food, clothing & shelter, we have family, we have friends and we have lots of love.  while our lives aren't perfect and we face challenges everyday {like disheartening phone calls trying to get health insurance and being told "yes, if you were married you would pay less each month."}, but above all we are so amazingly blessed.  everyday i wake up, i try to remember that and at the very least make a mental list of all the things i'm grateful for.  everyday.

every single day.

{photo credit:  jamie street}

Monday, November 19, 2012

music mondays {kitten}

loving this song from kitten right now.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Saturday, November 10, 2012

family photography

a few months back, we were lucky enough to have the super talented jamie street, the blogger behind a desert fete and one half of the wedding photography sensation rad + in love, come and take some gorgeous family photos.

her documentary style is not only gorgeous, but so thoughtful as well.  she seems to capture the perfect moments.

if you are in the southern california area, and want some family photos in time for the holidays...definitely check out her mini sessions coming up.

check out the natural sweet.  if you're lucky enough to be in san diego, don't miss out.  if you are considering traveling in the socal area, it's worth the drive.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

work, stay at it a choice?

well, yes, it *has* been a while hasn't it.  hello there.  remember way back {you probably don't god knows how long ago i posted} when i said i wanted to stay at home? i did, for a long time.  but i've had to go back to work.  i've been blessed with jobs that are flexible and allow me to have at home time with beatrice, but i'm officially a working mama now.  it wasn't really my choice, i went back to work for financial reasons.  we decided that i would go back to work and patty would stay home with beatrice.  on the other hand, i'm happy and grateful that patty is able to bond with beatrice and we are demonstrating a true parenting partnership.

to me,  feminism is about choice, but what if i don't chose it?  well, i suppose i did choose to go back to work and stay where we are versus moving somewhere that might have a lower cost of living...but as lesbian parents, we can't just pick up and move anywhere.  i want beatrice to grow up with diversity and acceptance.  i don't want her to be the only one she knows who has two moms or two dads.  so we stay in the metropolitan area and i go back to work.

my priorities will always be family first and i will have to find ways for my life to reflect that.  i'm still continually inspired by other mamas who make it work somehow...that ever elusive work/life balance. will the story change and evolve?  of course it will.  but i'm doing my best to be a present and supportive mama to beatrice, whatever that means today.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

steady as she grows {seventeen months}

this weekend, we went to a playdate for a waldorf charter school that is scheduled to open in 2013.  the idea of getting an waldorf education through the public school system is really appealing.  i love the idea of a waldorf education, but a private education is so expensive...there are even two different waldorf schools in our area, but i'm really looking forward to the progress of this charter.  this was our first playdate with this group and we are really excited to participate more!

this was beatrice's first time with painting...we bought her crayons the weekend before, but i was really inspired to get her painting...the set up was great, there were lots of cardboard boxes laid out on the ground and around in a circle.  at first, bea just watched all the other kids...but by the end, she was literally laying inside a cardboard box painting it!

at seventeen months, she's got more control over her body and really loves the painting was an amazing experience.  i've been researching non toxic and homemade paints and now i have a use for all those cardboard boxes i've been inexplicably hoarding...

she is still signing and she knows more signs than words she can say, but she's really using her voice a lot more lately.  she also knows that i'm "mama" and patty is "mom."  we went through a million different names to call patty, but just sort of landed on mom.  it's still confusing, but mostly for us...she seems to know the difference!  yesterday, she saw a picture of patty and said "mom!"

i'm loving this age and the amazing growth spurts...she's also definitely demonstrating her toddler determination.  we are working really hard on not taking things from her (unless it's dangerous!), which is tough.  i want to respect her and not grab things from her, plus i ask her not to grab things from other kids, so "do as i say, not as i do?"...not so much.  but this morning i accidentally left my phone within her reach, and usually if i ask for it back she'll give it to me.  but this time, she pulled it away and said "nah!" so i've been trying to offer her alternatives and give her choices, so she is empowered...something like: "i'm not offering you the phone, but you can have this book or this toy..."

she's developing her own personality and it's such an exciting journey!

{photo credit: bug from mostly granola}

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

happy valentine's day!

happy valentine's day!  this year, we continued our family valentine's tradition of attending the true pablove event!  last year was the first year and patty & i volunteered...beatrice was only five months old, so i wrapped her up in my moby wrap and she was snug as a bug.  

true pablove is a family event to raise money for the pablove foundation: fighting childhood cancer with love.  this organization is really close to our hearts as it was started by our dear friends jeff and joann, in memory of their son pablo, who died in 2009 from cancer.  

the event was so fun and so joyous--there was gymnastics, ice cream, pizza, tacos, music and crafts, crafts, crafts galore!  we loved being able to give back to the community and have a wonderful time doing it.  i said to patty, however: "i wish we didn't have to do this...i wish there wasn't a true pablove event.  i wish that kids didn't get cancer." but kids do get cancer.  to which patty responded: "jeff and joann  have been able to use their story to give joy and help to others."  so true, jeff and joann are some of the the most amazing, positive people i've come across in my life and i'm honored to know them and so grateful that we are able to help in even just a small way.  the work that pablove foundation does is so important and they have found a way to infuse joy and positivity and love while helping children who need it most...

happy valentine's day send your love out to those who need fight childhood cancer with love! 

{photo from the fotomatic booth at true pablove!  bea kept looking at the little screen on the bottom and not at the camera...}

Thursday, February 9, 2012

rad + in love

i'm so thrilled to see that my dear friend jamie has launched her new photography business rad + in love.  check out their amazing pics of a recent wedding at korakia pensione in palm springs...breathtakingly beautiful...

these gals are ones to watch...hmmm...can we get married again so they can shoot it??

hot tip for new yorkers: they will be in new york in june travel fees...pretty sweet deal.

{photo credit: rad + in love}

ps. i love that they are bringing back the word RAD!  that's hella cool...

kicking off the love stories...

just in time for the overturn of prop 8, and leading up to valentines day,  our little love story kicks off a series over at sometimes sweet! check it out...

{photo credit: brett gurewitz}

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

little faery...

this weekend, beatrice had her first interactions with faeries at descanso gardens...we went to the camellia festival at the gardens and they had really fun faery tours...

truth be told, she didn't really interact so much with the faeries, but she loved running in the woods and picking up sticks!  but i love the idea of the magic and wonder that the faery tours's such a wonderful way to be close to and celebrate nature!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

vintage weekend...

so absolute favorite vinage expo is happening this weekend in santa monica. i've been going in both san francisco and santa monica for fact, i bought my amazing vintage wedding dress {circa 1930's} from a great vendor there. it's probably the best spot to find a genuine vintage wedding there are so many under one roof...

this weekend!  february fourth & fifth in santa monica!

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

funny and crunchy...

ha, ha...remember my crunchy mamas post?  well, here's a great little character sketch...i haven't been watching any of the "sh*t...says" videos, but i had to watch this one! yes, totally laughing at myself...

Thursday, January 19, 2012

other folks weddings: {malia & michelle}

i'm thrilled to feature this gorgeous wedding that took place last year on september 25...a lovely desert wedding at the ever so fabulous ace hotel in palm springs.  disclaimer:  i've known malia {in suit} since the early 1990's and i'm over the moon that she found michelle, the girl for her.  this relaxed, joyous wedding is full of love and fun... and i adore michelle's vintage style and yes, malia is woman who wears men's clothes...and wears them well! so get yourself a tasty beverage that reminds you of the relaxed summer vibe that this wedding emits, think sunny california desert thoughts and toast to malia and michelle!

2011 Palm Springs

how long were you together before you got married?
we have known each since the mid 90s but were a couple for about two years before we got married.

2011 Palm Springs

2011 Palm Springs

2011 Palm Springs

2011 Palm Springs

2011 Palm Springs

2011 Palm Springs

2011 Palm Springs

did you diy anything?  what did you leave to vendors?
we did the save the dates ourselves...our invitations were done custom by kimberly austin at austinpress in san francisco.  our beautiful flowers and the decor were done by luna at arrangements design in palm springs.  both ladies were a complete treat to work with and really understood what we wanted!

2011 Palm Springs

tell me about the day{s}.
we got married on sept 25 2011 at the ace hotel in palm springs...we love going there year round so we thought it would be perfect to have the wedding there...lots of happy times there for us...we had about 120 friends and family from all parts of the world join...we pretty much took over the hotel for the week! it felt really special to see all our loved ones in one giant magical place. the day of the wedding was filled with swimming, eating, the ceremony, and lots of dancing and more swimming! and a ton of love!!!

2011 Palm Springs

how did you approach the planning process?
we have a wonderful friend heather who can arrange parties with her eyes closed!so thankfully she helped us! also taneka at the ace hotel helped with arranging everything dealing with the space and vendors and the delicious food!!! 

what was important?
music!!! luckily the wonderful zach cowie lent us his talent for the night! no one wanted to stop dancing! it was awesome because the space had a private pool so people could dance and jump in the pool too.  zach really took time out of his crazy music world life to understand what we wanted to dance to and it turned out perfect!

2011 Palm Springs

2011 Palm Springs

2011 Palm Springs

2011 Palm Springs

2011 Palm Springs

2011 Palm Springs

what was your favorite part of the day?
the unreal amount of love that everyone brought...sounds cheesy but it was really so sweet...

one piece of advice?
just really enjoy each part of the planning and relax on the day goes by really quick!

2011 Palm Springs

2011 Palm Springs

{photographer: eyla cuenca}
{flowers & decor: luna at arrangements design}

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

sneak peak: other folks weddings {malia & michelle}

2011 Palm Springs
i know it's been a while, but i just got the pics and the low-down on a super lovely, loving and amazing wedding that took place at the palm springs ace hotel last september...can't wait to share it with you all...

{photo credit: eyla cuenca}

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

what does a crunchy mama mean?

i'll post a holiday round up post soon...beatrice *loved* her was a real hit!  best $85 i've spent in a while...

lately i've been obsessing over babywearing... i began wearing beatrice very early on and i have a few different carriers, but lately i've been wanting more.  i've been spending time on various babywearing boards and have realized that it's a vast and diverse community.  and it's a community...there are so many women {and some men} out there, but it's still not very mainstream.  unfortunately, the norm is still those very uncomfortable baby bjorns...

and with every community, there is definitely diversity...but many babywearing mamas fall into the crunchy mama realm: natural birth, cloth diapering, babywearing, AP, non-vaxing, co-sleeping, eating organic, respecting the child, gentle parenting, etc.  i consider myself very crunchy, i definitely do all of the above, except the non-vaxing {my decision to vax is another, long post...}.  i'm pretty on the hippie side and i also fall on the liberal side.  my experience of "hippie" coming from the san francisco bay area {haight ashbury, berkeley, etc} has been that hippie or crunchy equals liberal.  well not so much in the mama-hood world...

i'm finding that many of the mamas on the boards are pretty conservative socially and quite religious.  there is definitely a faction of mormon mamas who are very crunchy.  and i have to admit: this is a bit unsettling for me definitely puts me on guard a little bit when i'm posting or on the forums.  i find myself using the partner word but avoiding the she pronoun for fear of being judged.

however, i know that by withholding information and assuming that i will be judged, that i'm the one doing the judging...i'm the one judging them and assuming that their views will not be accepting of me.  what would that say to my daughter?  don't be yourself, for fear of being judged?  that's certainly not a message i want to send her.  so in order to practice my philosophy of leading by example, i'm working on acceptance on my part...

{photo of me wearing bea at an outfest fundraising event}