Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Like Hitchcock Only Not Creepy

There is the skeleton of a mall a few miles from our house that is playing host to a spectacular bird migration right now. My neighbor sent me a video a few weeks ago of her kids exploring the parking lot with black speckles swooping above their heads and we had to go.


We gave Eddy a bath and left our house at about 8, stopped for a six-pack of beers, and found a spot to park among other eager bird watchers.


The night that we went was one of those magical Texas summer nights just before rain. As giant storm clouds rolled in, the temperature dropped and the wind swirled around us. It felt wild and spooky and electric.


It reminded me of one of those nights from your childhood that you remember for all time. This one night, when we were kids, my parents took us out in our pajamas...





According to a friend on Instagram, it's still going on so get there if you're in Austin.

And to answer your burning question, no, we did not get pooped on.




On our way home, Tim said, "That is totally one of those things that white people do. Go watch Science." This half-white girl/former science teacher was totally geeking out.




So, am I the only mom out there that cries at ridiculous times? I going to assume I'm not.

There I was, snapping pictures of my little family on my favorite kind of summer night doing my favorite kind of thing. And I was crying.

Shut up.


///





Tuesday, July 30, 2013

The Same Old Story

I came across this story today about Maude Callen, a midwife in rural South Carolina in the 1950s. The photographs - originally published in LIFE in 1951 - tell a story so incredible that it inspired readers to donate more than $20,000 that was used to set up a clinic.

When I came to this picture, I started crying.


I've said it before, but on the day of Eddy's birth I felt a completely primal connection to thousands of years of women before me. And though I was the only one with the physical power to push, there was an extraordinary network surrounding me that sure did help will that big-headed baby out.

I am in love with this image. I've been there. I know the trust that this woman had placed in Mrs. Callen. I think I may just start a hunt for the original LIFE magazine so that I can hold these images in my hands.

I showed this picture to Tim and he said, "Oh wow. That does look just like you looked."



I love that after all this time - barring emergencies - when it works, it works.


///


See the full gallery of W. Eugene Smith's photo essay here.

And I am still so thankful for alison eden. My friend gave me the gift of being able to relive that day any time I wish.






Saturday, July 27, 2013

30/52

A portrait of my child once a week, every week, in 2013.


We daytripped out to Pace Bend Park last weekend and found a tiny strip of the Colorado River that sure did feel like our own private ocean. We got there early, played hard for 3 hours, and drove home with 2 sleeping buds in the backseat. 

Can't wait to go back.


Summer, you rule.


///


I'm in love with this little big boy and his helmet. Reminds me of my own blondie. And I've already pledged my love for skinned knees like these.

Joining Jodi.





Friday, July 26, 2013

The E's Knees

Thank you, Summer, for reintroducing me to these knees that I love so.


Hidden under pants and long shorts, I thought that maybe they had turned into big boy knees. No, they aren't as padded as they were a year ago but baby knees is what they look like to me.

And if you look real closely, you can see the remains of a little sidewalk burn. With adventure and bravery comes the occasional injury. Scrapes and bruises make me love them all the more. Still chubby and covered in blonde fuzz, they are enough to make me swoon.

So this summer, we are letting these knees feel some air. We are rolling up those little shorts, swimming in just a diaper, and waiting a leeetle bit longer to put on pajamas after bath. I can't be certain that these knees will be the same next summer.


Love that chub.

And PS - he held onto to that Popsicle in the pool until it was gone. Every time he attempted a bite, he made a face telling me that it was too cold. When it melted to nothing more than a dime's size, it floated away in the water and he looked at me in the most pained way. Can't quite figure them out yet.




Saturday, July 20, 2013

29/52

A portrait of my child once a week, every week, in 2013.


We had a twilight family adventure this week that I will share more about later. It was just before a storm so the sky was grouchy and the air was magic. And Eddy, of course, found the puddles.

How cool are these photos of kids in front of a projector? And a baby in a bath. Need I say more?

Joining Jodi.





Thursday, July 18, 2013

BFFs

I asked Eddy today if Lucy was his best friend and he said yes.



I think that if I had asked him if cheese was his best friend that he would have said yes.

But I didn't ask him that.



<3




Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Johnny and Rachel

Eddy and I have developed a routine over the past 6 months that I love. We have a spot and sometimes we take other people to our spot but mostly it is ours.

Our spot is La Cocina de Consuelo and it has the most delicious breakfast burritos in Austin. Maybe anywhere. Whoa.


If booze-soaking grease is what you're looking for, La Cocina won't cut it. I don't judge. Once upon a time that's what I was looking for. The burritos are big enough to share - Eddy and I share 2 and never finish - and they are stuffed with home-cooked-tasting goodness that leave you feeling satisfied and never heavy. And the best thing - the best thing - is that their tortillas are homemade. I've watched them roll the dough. It's a rarity here in Austin and it's a game changer.

For  m o n t h s, Eddy and I came here at least twice a week. We walked in each time, smiley and overly excited for our breakfast. We order 2: a Johnny (bean, egg, cheese, and potato) and a Rachel (potato, egg, and beautifully ripe avocado every time) and the same man has taken our order every time. Besides Consuelo, "Connie", he's often times the only other person working.

Okay so like I said, at least twice a week for  m o n t h s  and the most I'd ever get out of this guy was "Would you like a copy of your receipt?" If you could hear me saying that right now you'd basically be hearing him saying it because I'm really good at impressions.

I've always wanted to have a spot where I could walk in and feel like a regular and I was beginning to think it was never going to happen.


AND THEN! one day, he asked me how old Eddy was. Probably way too excitedly, I responded "16 months!" And oh I didn't stop there. "Yeah, he's a pretty big boy but he's really started thinning out since he started walking." I could hear Tim saying, "Geez, he didn't ask for a history lesson."

This was actually something to call home about. I called my mom and told her that the burrito man finally talked to me about something other than my receipt!

This recharged our burrito-having experience. Sometimes we would even up our weekly toll to thrice a week.

Oh, it gets better. A few visits later, the burrito man made my dreams come true when he uttered the words, "Do you want your regular?"

!!!



Around mid-June, they hung signs up around the store saying that they would be on vacation from July 1-July 8. On the last day of June, we savored our burritos that would have to sustain us through a very long week and wished them a good vacation! on our way out the door.

Totally not caring if it seemed eager, we showed up on July 9 and ordered a Johnny and a Rachel to go.

This is where things get real good.




As he handed me my bag, our burrito man said:

Have a good day, Kacie.

KACIE!

I mean, obviously he just looked at my credit card but hey.

Dreams. For real. This is what dreams are made of.

For me, at least.

If you're in Austin, get on over there. Tell 'em Kacie sent you.

No, don't don't. That makes me so nervous. I don't want to get ahead of myself.





Oh my gosh, what if one day Eddy and I get a burrito named after us on the menu?? Okay now I am getting ahead of myself.





Saturday, July 13, 2013

28/52


A portrait of my child once a week, every week, in 2013.



Nowadays, we are left with stripping down and drenching ourselves with a hose as one of our only options for staying cool.

Eddy's not complaining. In fact, he wakes up from every nap and exclaims, "Wuhduh!"

///

I am really loving Meryl's photos lately. Her adventures are enviable and beautifully captured. And Coco looks so very happy and free.

Joining Jodi.




Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Love and Dental Hygiene

A few weeks ago, Tim and I sat around with friends after all the kids had gone to sleep. We drank beer, shared stories, and laughed until we cried.

Tim told a story about how, when we first started dating, I told him that he should squeeze the toothpaste tube from the bottom up to make it last longer. (I was really laying on the sexy to keep this guy.) I didn't remember this at all but apparently I made a game out of it and every time he was ready to throw in the towel and buy a new tube, I challenged him to squeeze more out and sure enough he could. Before you get worried that we were compromising our dental hygiene, let me assure you that I have been cavity-free for 31 years.

Some time later, with a bright smile on his face, he asked me to marry him.

Smart guy. I'm obviously a total catch.




Happy anniversary, TT.

Love ya. Here's to fresh breath and us.




Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Dear Eddy, Month 17 (but who's counting?)

Dear Eddy,

A friend recently asked me what we do all day. I told her that we do anything all day. Or nothing. Or just find something. Most days, we don't really have a plan. Sounds super lazy but something could be a trip to the grocery store - where the first thing you ask for is a carrot ("ckkh") - or a spontaneous splash. I've been to the grocery store a few times without you and I gotta say it's just not as fun. People look at me like I'm crazy when I talk out loud about whether this cantaloupe smells ripe enough. We're buds, you and me. We can have fun doing absolutely nothing.

I've recently turned your car seat around to face forward - a bit sooner than originally planned but you are enormous and it was getting to the point of needing a shoehorn to wedge you out facing backwards - and now it very much feels like we are cruising together. We took a road trip, just the two of us, a few weeks ago and you were unsurprisingly the perfect road companion.

I had my iPhone plugged in and we were listening to music on shuffle. It feels like bragging to say that you have impeccable taste but I'll go ahead and brag. You find your groove in anything from The Clash to Stevie Wonder.

Somewhere between Galveston and New Braunfels, New Slang by The Shins came on and I told you that this was a song I played for you on the day you were born.

Having total anxiety about what to play while I was in labor, I scratched that idea and instead made a playlist to start after you were born. I had some idea of what our house would feel like at that time and I knew I wanted certain sounds hitting your ears from the start. I didn't realize at the time that I was building a playlist that consisted of songs that would forever transport me immediately to that day.

Marvin Gaye promised me that together would feel good, Diana Ross knew that I would hear a symphony, Robert Smith knew how it felt to wait so long for something exciting, and of course The Beatles.

When I told you in the car that I had played this song for you on the day you were born, I fantasized about you telling someone else that in the future. Before that time comes, I'm sure I'll slip up and tell teenage-you in front of a friend and totally embarrass you, but I think you'll come around. And in that fantasy, the person you're riding with says, "Wow, your mom has really good taste in music."

Duh. Where did you think that groove of yours came from?

Rock on, Little Dude. I love ya.

love,
Mama


I love it when we're cruising together.





Saturday, July 6, 2013

27/52

A portrait of my child once a week, every week, in 2013.




Do you think he lies in bed and thinks about his day? Like, Today was a really good day. I had so much fun with my family. I think I remember learning in a Child Development class in college that a baby's thoughts only go as far as their language. If that's the case, then he was probably thinking Papa! Mama! Deedee! Wuhduh! as he drifted off to sleep tonight.




I'm in love with this beautiful black and white shot from last week and am in search of the same light. And this city adventure looks fantastic.

Joining Jodi.