Saturday, January 17

new digs*

the boho family, photo by tara whitney

Dearest ladies and gents,
It was indeed time for a transformation, so my blog has moved to the following new digs...

Chronicles of Me ~ Part Deux

Do add this new address to your bookmarks or blog lists:

I'm so thrilled about this new adventure.
Hope to see you there!

Friday, January 16

our boho kitties rock!

elvis (left) and amber (right) protecting while cedar naps

amber (left) and elvis (right) discussing cedar's dance moves

We had no idea how our kitties would respond to Cedar. They have been our children for years and to introduce them to a new baby brought up concerns for us in a big way. Our kitties slept with us, cuddled on the couch, followed us wherever we went and so I wondered if all of this would stop, if they would run away or just ignore Cedar and be annoyed by his cries.

What ended up happening was so beautiful. At first Amber was the one to be nurturing right away. She went up and sniffed him and laid near him on that first night bringing him home. With the bassinet right up against my side of the bed, she would lay near it and constantly look in to see if he was alright. Elvis reacted differently. At first he hissed and ran away from him. It was as if he thought Cedar was another cat there to steal his food and cushy blankets all around the house. We noticed Elvis looked annoyed and frustrated with us. I was so worried he'd just take off one day, so we tried to give our kitties as much attention as possible. Then, about a week after Cedar was home, Elvis started laying a bit closer to him each night. He would walk up and smell him rather than turn away when we brought Cedar into a room. Most recently, he lays near Cedar and places his paw somewhere on his body and purrs.

The cutest thing is that both Amber and Elvis are really protective of Cedar now. Each of them grab a side to snuggle on and they look at one another as if they are discussing what the babysitting plan is (I captured it in these two photos).

My favorite part of the week is during the weekend when we all try to stay in bed as long as possible and all four of us are cuddled near one another. We call it the "family bed" and I must say, I am totally blissed out on those mornings.

Cedar loves to watch them but I have no idea if he has registered the difference between a human and a cat as of yet. One time when Amber was snuggled near him, he squealed when looking at her up close and flailed his arms to where he whacked her in the face. I thought she was going to jump off of the couch but rather, she just turned her body in the other direction and was so very patient with him.

I am curious what your experiences have been with your children and pets, or other peoples children and your pets, or other peoples pets and your children or if you just want to talk about your pets. ; ) Do share.

Wednesday, January 14

loved baby*

cedar's bum, canon 50d

I know I've been a wee bit quiet.

There's been a shift here in our home. Since I am still truly in it, I am struggling to find the words to express what is happening but I am sure once I allow more time for reflection, the words will come. Right now I don't want to try to make sense of it. It just feels like some fears are subsiding. Blame and shame are not getting much attention. Expectations are hushing. My heart is opening wider. My love is growing deeper. I am lost in him. Totally utterly lost in how I want to meet his every need and rock him to sleep and talk to him about my life and dream with him and sit still with him and listen to music and dance with him.

I am marinating in this. I know I have always had a big heart but I didn't realize how much of it was reserved for this little guy.

Such a loved baby.

Saturday, January 10


cedar, this morning at 7 weeks, canon 50d

dear sweet son,
you teach me to sit in stillness and watch the sunrise.


Friday, January 9

squam art workshops 2009*

christine, swirly and kelly rae at squam 2008, canon digital rebel xti

Last year, I shared the life altering experience I had at Squam both here and here. Since, I am still evolving and growing and moving forward with so much of what I learned about myself, my dear friends and the new lasting friendships I made there. One of my dearies called it a "Soul Picnic" and how perfect of a description that is.

Well, it's happening again folks and this time TWICE...both in June and September of 2009. I am hoping to somehow make it work that I can be there in the Fall because I cannot for the life of me imagine missing out on the absolute juicy goodness that is this magical place. Not only is it peaceful and gorgeous and nature at its best...but to be surrounded by such soulful, loving, accepting, unique women (and a few brave men) in one place just rocked my world.

My dear friend, Elizabeth...the Queen of and Creator of Squam, wrote this letter on the Squam blog and I wanted to share it here with hopes that you too will be inspired to partake in the next Soul Picnic of a Lifetime if you're able::

{preview of documentary "Who Does She Think She Is?"}

Okay, trumpets please, the first big announcement of 2009 is that we will be showing the film "Who Does She Think She Is?" at both the June and September sessions.


But wait, it gets better. Director Pamela Tanner Boll will also be on hand at the September screening to discuss the film and to answer your questions.
And, she will be with us for the whole weekend and taking classes, too.

If you are not familiar with the film, it was made by the same producing team that won an Academy Award for Born Into Brothels.

"Who Does She Think She Is?" examines some of the most pressing issues of our time: parenting and work, partnering and independence, economics and art. The film follows five women artists as they navigate the economic, psychological, and spiritual challenges of making work outside the elite art world.

Here's what some of our country's leading newspapers had to say about the film:

from The New York Times: "Calmly directed by Pamela Tanner Boll, "Who Does She Think She Is?" is about answering the call to self-expression in the face of biological imperatives and cultural programming." (October 17, 2008)

from The New York Times: "The new film, "Who Does She Think She Is?," provides a nuanced look at the sacrifices and challenges facing female artists who become mothers." (October 14, 2008)

from The Wall Street Journal: "Why are there so many women in art school, but a tiny percentage represented in major galleries? Why does a woman have to choose between having a family and practicing her art? What are some of the hurdles that women face in the art world? These are a few of the questions filmmaker Pamela Tanner Boll tackles in her new documentary, "Who Does She Think She Is?" (October 17, 2008)

Needless to say, I am chuffed and thrilled and honored that this will be available to you at SAW this year.

Bisous, Elizabeth

Wednesday, January 7


cedar, canon 50d

I love how when I am open about the messy bits in my life,
that healing weaves its way into the story.

Today was gentler than yesterday.
It was more quiet and soothing. Him and me. Me and him.
We gazed at one another while I told him stories.
Not in a baby voice, but my me voice...
And I shared some of the journey that brought me to him.
He listened intently.
We danced in my studio to Libera until he fell asleep nestled in my neck.
Then we laid together just breathing.

I read him your stories...
the ones where you all came and circled us, told us we weren't alone,
wrapped your arms around me and my babe and, held our hands and nodded with understanding. Oh how this transformed our spirits and made sense of it all.

Tonight we had a moment that I needed but didn't realize I needed.
It was quiet. Boho Boy was asleep. Me and Cedar alone on the couch.
Him on my chest. He wiggled his face up towards mine, sleeping...like a cherub.
My heart felt so full of love that it hurt...but a good hurt.

And it all came flowing into me as I allowed myself to truly see him.
Then there was something I couldn't see but feel...
Like the wind.

"You're the one I've been waiting for...".

Tuesday, January 6

rookie mom*

I remember so, so many times over the past four years of my fertility journey I would gather up all the strength I had to get out of the house and bring myself to the beach for a healing walk by the shore. Then, as I walked, I would pass adorable family after adorable family and it would break my heart. I would see cute mothers riding their cute strollers with their cute babies and as I would look away to watch the waves crash instead, I would think..."some day that will be me." It's amazing how much that longing consumes you when you are given the idea that you may not ever experience it.

So many tears streamed down my face behind my sunglasses on those days. So many times I would look down and just watch my feet walking forward in the sand so that I wouldn't have to see those moms and feel that heartache. I never once thought that any of those mothers may be having their own world of struggles. I never once thought that this day for them is their one day they are able to get out of the house for some fresh air and that walking in the sand is their sanity, their place of reconnecting with themselves.

I wish I would have known then, what I know now. That way, I might have looked a bit deeper into their story and had seen many mothers who perhaps looked at me with longing..."there she is all by herself on the beach, only responsible for her, so much free time, free time...how I long for what she has." I think it would have helped me to know that during those walks on the beach, I too was holding something so valuable but I was often too depleted and saddened to see it.

Today I took Cedar to the beach alone for the first time. It was early in the morning and my favorite beach is about a 25 minute drive away. I had been looking forward to this moment for years. It was my turn, right? My day on the beach with babe dream coming true.

Well, he cried a lot of the way because there was one burp that decided to wedge itself into his gut about 10 minutes after I put him in the car seat. Damn...I thought I got all of those burps out before we left! So, by the time we finally arrived, he was angry and not at all his Zen self able to appreciate fresh ocean air. I thought for sure once I got him in the stroller and walking, he would doze off into baby-la land. Well, the dirt road down to the beach is pretty intense. Its steep, with a lot of rocks and bumps. How would I know this because I've never needed to take it? I always took the stairs. So, as I took the stroller down the road, holding onto dear life so that it didn't tip over, he totally starts wailing. Wait! I never saw babies cry on their way down to the beach! I thought for sure once we get to the sand, he'd stop...but he didn't, so I decided he must need the rest of his bottle. There was an issue. The sand was damp and wet...you know, like winter beach sand but whatever. I laid my blanket out, plopped myself down and held him to feed him. Oh my...the sun was in his eyes and I didn't have a sun hat for him. So, I am sitting in the middle of the beach, on a blanket with a newborn and my bum getting soaking wet and all these people walking by are looking at me like I am a total rookie and haven't a clue what I am doing. He was wet and cold and annoyed and I was ill prepared. I felt myself on the verge of just bursting into self pity tears but then I took a deep breath and showed him the waves while he finished his happy juice. I propped him up on my chest so that I could put my other hand over his face to block the sun and we finally had our moment of Zen.

After this, I walked him for a bit (see video above) but then quickly got into the car so I could change him (who knew that strollers make you spit up all over everything) and then head home. I thought I was okay but then half way home I just burst into tears. I tried to figure out where all the emotion came from and then I remembered. All those times I walked on the beach longing for what I have now and here I was, having that dream moment and in all honesty, it was totally awkward and uncomfy and I just wanted to go back home. I realized that I had a certain expectation of how it was supposed to be and was trying to live up to that expectation today but failed miserably.

The drive home was a cycle of remembering the pain of my longing for so many years, then feeling guilty for being annoyed by all that transpired and then forgiving myself for having very normal feelings that all new mothers have. I'm trying to find my groove, my center, my Zen, my ability to let go...and I know that will take time.

I cried more today on the couch and I am just letting myself cry. This is a lot. Going from (in)fertility to adoption and the myriad of emotions in between...its just a lot to take in and work through. Thank goodness Cedar-love has the patience of a saint and that we are head over heals for one another. We'll figure it out together.

I'd love to hear stories like I just shared with you. A day when you took your babe out and it was just a comedy of errors. It would help me to not feel so isolated and alone with it all.

Sunday, January 4

total baby nerdness*

My sisters, nieces and I have this "Voice" we use to talk to our pets and when we all get together, we exaggerated it with one another. Sometimes, when we're talking on the phone and one person is having a rough time, one of us will talk to the other in this Voice and it always ends in laughter. Total medicine for the girls in my family...and the boys just roll their eyes. I think its because they're jealous since they just can't get the Voice right.

So, I made this video of Cedar right after he woke up and had his bottle. It is for his Auntie Darlene because, well...she is the creator of the Voice and I am using it here to talk to him.

I must forewarn you that if you're not in the mood for total baby nerdness, then...you might want to skip the video. ; )

Friday, January 2

eight belles*

boho baby cedar & owlie, canon 50d

Owlie, a gift from true and lovely Amy, was the first stuffed friend that Cedar reached for when I placed it near him. I think Owlie carried with him the soft, sensitive, thoughtful, deep, oh so deep of a soul that Amy herself embodies. These are qualities I feel pouring forth our son and it doesn't surprise me that he was attracted to her spirit so easily.

I also wanted to share Amy's music with you. Dim the lights, light some candles, close your eyes and take deep breaths as her melodies swim through your soul. She transforms the heart with her unique voice and lyrics. They will find you either laying in the sand or grass looking up at the stars, sitting in a cafe in Paris people watching and spilling in your journal...so many places she takes me in my mind. I cry. I laugh. I revel. I dig deep. I dream. I long. I breathe deep. I question. I soar. I accept. I let go. I embrace. I sit still. I feel.

And she has become a dear soul friend in my life. One of those friends you feel you've known in another life and you connect in this one with chills and an honor already nurtured and new memories to unfold. Effortless and true.

Eight Belles...do open your heart and listen. Your life will change...and it will be good.

{album photo by jesh de rox}