Thursday, December 13, 2012

The Countdown

AH, the happy season of December...

Like an idiot, I decided to knit two major gifts at the beginning of the month. One is almost done, the other...not so much. But its the one for Silas, so I guess he won't be mad...

Today we decorated cookies. I type this as Silas is in his swing while Milo (completely jacked on royal icing) dances to Christmas songs to amuse him. 

 Maybe I went a little nuts with the macro, but sprinkles are just SO PRETTY
This baby has been up since six a.m. without a decent nap. 

I enjoy his feet.

Even when the boys get photobombed by them.

It begins...

I am debating letting him run around outside. But he will want me to chase him. And I do not want to chase him. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Hair, In My Dreams

If it wouldn't be weird/illegal, I would scalp her and wear her hair as my own:

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Boys Are Gross, But I Love Mine

Int. Morning, my house

A 31-year old, overweight, slightly attractive woman walks through a hallway and comes across a crumpled t-shirt on the floor

Althea : "Hey, Milo, why is your new Darth Vader t-shirt on the floor?"

Milo (without looking up from his computer game, and with the tone of someone pointing out something painfully obvious) : "Cause der was POOP on it."

Althea : "Uh, so why was there poop on it? How did that happen?"

Milo : "I don't KNOW MOM!"

Althea : "oh."


Int. mid-afternoon, my office area

Aforementioned woman walks through her home holding a large baby. She has just changed her shirt because the baby has just puked on it.

Baby is held facing out in the hopes that any further spew will land on the easily wiped floor.

Woman sits at her computer, with baby still in facing-out position.

Baby pukes on her jeans. 

Althea : " REALLY?!!??"


Friday, November 30, 2012

The Battle

In many ways, we do some sort of battle daily. Battle against traffic, against inner demons, against enemies,etc.

I battle with myself. The crummy thing about fighting with yourself is that you don't really ever win. 

My recent struggle is with my appearance. I know, I know...vanity is disgusting. But I can't help it. If my appearance doesn't at least approach cute...I feel bad. 

I can't fit into ANY of my clothes. I feel as though I don't have time to exercise. Or maybe, I just don't want to do it. 

Sometimes the weight of this world seems to be more than I can handle. 

It is no coincidence that I am writing this on a Friday morning. Thursdays have been a battlefield for me for some time now. I hate them. My best friend knows this and occasionally sends me (I just got a text from her this moment) a text or an email to cheer me up.

Yesterday (and the day before) was rough. The bad thoughts beat their way through the walls I have built in my mind and came crashing to the forefront. 

I know that I should be grateful. For this life. For my wonderful husband. For my incredible family and friends. 

And I am. 

I often say, "I love you people but I need you to get the hell away from me."

Today my prayer is for strength. Strength to do what I know is right. To NOT eat the rest of the chocolate cake in my fridge. To run to God. To appreciate what I have. To be GRATEFUL for my body-the body that held and nourished two babies. To not detest myself or my situation. 


Friday, November 16, 2012


I have random ideas of somethings to post here...late at night/early in the morning.

But come almost-sunrise, I have forgotten them. As Milo asks me to tell him about my dreams...forgotten.

However, I have been taking some photos. 


THIS IS MY STREETLIGHT!!!! (milo is trying to climb it)

Thursday, October 18, 2012


Yesterday I tried to get my oldest son to join me on a walk over a windy (but small) hill to investigate a lake. 

An honest LAKE. Man made to be sure, but old and BEHIND MY HOUSE.


We have a HOUSE now. 

It is the biggest BIGGEST thing I have ever lived in before in my whole very entire LIFE. 

It has a basement and a garage and an oven with GAS and a new bookshelf and a big bedroom for everyone and an EXTRA BEDROOM.

Never before in my life have I lived somewhere with a whole extra BEDROOM. 

Milo flatly refused ( well not flatly. he was quite dramatic about it ) to come with to the lake. 

I'll get him there. I wonder if the kids here skate on it when it freezes. There a is also a total sled hill. 

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Heightened Awareness

I had just sat down at the computer to do some research on the park district of the town to which we are supposedly moving.

The only people home were myself, my kids and my mother in law.

Then we heard large thud, followed by other, faster thuds. Accompanied by the scream of a child. 

My mother in law and I leapt up from where we were sitting. She yells, 'WHERE ARE YOU?'.

We race up the stairs, round the corner into the first bedroom. 

The heavy dresser leans against the end of the bed. 

The scream is coming from underneath it. 

My mother in law and I heave the dresser off the bed. I grab my son; who wraps himself around me with his arms and legs. He's crying. 

I take him out into the hall to check him for blood, a concussion, bruises, anything. 

Nothing. A scratch on his leg. No blood. 

My mother in law was struggling with the heavy dresser. She says, 'Is there something behind it, I can't get it back up!'

The drawers had all been opened by a little boy looking for his Two-Face mask. Their combined weight tipped the dresser over onto the foot of the bed,forming a tent of dresser. 

If it weren't for the bed being where it was...I can't even. 

I hugged and kissed my son. I trembled and sweated and did NOT cry yet. 

But now the sunlight is brighter. The noises are louder. I could probably see in the dark right now. 

Then I saw this:

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Hey there.

Beth from KillerB hath tagged me. My brain is mush, so I can't think of something to write on my own. So here we go.

1. Would you rather have the ability to fly or to become invisible? Why?
Some of my favorite dreams are of flying. I don't want to be invisible, because I think I would spy on people and find out things I don't want to know! I'm nosy. 2. What is your favorite go-to dinner option?
Now that we are staying with my in-laws...frozen ravioli and jarred sauce (my inner chef is soooo embarrassed)3. Most quotable thing that YOU have ever said.
Last night, to my bestie Dana: 'If you're cold, go put some stuff on your things..."4. What is your greatest strength, or something that you are most proud of?
I'd like to think that I can make people feel good about themselvs. Bring someone out of the dumps. 5. What was the best vacation you ever took and what made it so incredible?
Punta Cana with my husband before we were married. It was such a different time. It was sexy and fun and relaxing and it changed me when I returned. Plus I met a giant rooster AND I got tan!!
Second best...Disney with the kid and the husb before kid #2 joined us. Great to see my little man enjoy the magic. Cannot wait to go back as a foursome. 6. If you had to relive a time in your life, what would you go back and do again?
If I had to relive it and do it differently I would have focused on getting into a good college right out of high school. I don't regret much but I do sometimes regret that. But I do NOT regret not having any loan payments to make!7. Tell me something you feel your parent(s) taught you that you still value to this day.
My parents taught me how to laugh. 8. If you had to bury a time capsule to represent this year, what three things would you put in it?
A moving box, paperwork and laundry detergent.9. Biggest pet peeve.
Whatever is irritating me at the moment. 10. Name your favorite non-major holiday and tell me why it's special to you.
Is Easter considered non-major? Its my favorite because it reminds me just how much God loves us. 11. What do you wish people would ask you about?
I wish people would STOP asking me how my newborn is 'letting me sleep'. HE DOESNT LET ME SLEEP!!! I'M TIRED!!! HE IS ONE MONTH OLD, DUDE!!!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Here He Is!

Silas Cooper!!!

Born July 10

Weighing 8 pounds 14 ounces

Friday, July 27, 2012

Yet Another Strange Dream

Someone told me once that it was incredibly boring to listen to peoples' dreams. He said it was like listening to a description of their acid trips.

I hope you , dear reader, do not feel this way. 

Last night I dreamt I was in an English countryside. At some sort of racetrack. Very proper and English and full of tall hedges. It was beautiful.
A very toothily handsome and properly English fellow in a blue blazer and khaki pants invited me and another girl to go for a horseback ride. 
I felt nervous because I am only familiar riding horses with Western type saddles, and I knew this would be an English-saddle ride. English saddles are typically far less comfortable, and the way in which you rein your horse is totally different. 

Nervousness in dreams...I wonder what that signifies.

The three of us began to ride through this proper English garden. I was at the end of our line, and I watched the other two riders posting during a trot, as they should...

Then I saw the sky bridge. It looked like the wooden bridge you see in movies. Dilapidated and rickety and swinging in the air. Ending at the top of a very tall pine.

The two riders trotted properly to the top. 

My horse and I followed. 

And then we fell. My beautiful golden horse and I. We fell all the way to the ground with a sickening thump. I watched the hurt in the horse's large eyes. I felt no pain. 

I knew, in my dream, that these were the last few moments for this animal. 

I touched its nose gently and whispered words of comfort. 

Then I woke up.

WEIRD, right???? 

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Post Partum

I don't want to write a post about the miracle of childbirth, ST. Alexius nurses, spinal blocks and planned c-sections without the time or forethought to do it justice. 

So I won't.

This is a placeholder post. 

I am off to wake my sleepy newborn and watch some Food Network. As I know most of my readers personally...go creep on Facebook if you want some photos.

For those of you that I do not have the pleasure of knowing personally...

Silas Cooper Smith was born on July 10th at 12:42 pm. 8 lbs, 15 oz, 21 inches long.

He has dark hair and seems very serious. He has a perfectly round head and does not like to sleep at night. 

He currently enjoys nursing, snuggles, and burping. 

There you go. 


Sunday, July 8, 2012

Mere Days

Today Brian and I took Milo to Gameworks for his last hurrah as an only child. As with most things these days-the outing left me tired, hungry and thirsty...

I hope that Milo can remember what it was like before he became a big brother. Not because I think being a big brother is going to suck for him, but because I want him to remember what it was like to have us all to himself. I want him to feel special all the time. 

As we sat together as a family at the Pac-Man Battle Royal game, Brian and Milo fought each other and the Smith In Utero began kicking as the game got louder. 

Last night Brian and I went to see Moonrise Kingdom. I figured out why I love Wes Anderson films so-they make me remember how to see the beauty and magic in everyday life. 
The oppressive heat finally broke last night and to drive home at midnight with the windows down was a treat. The moon peeked its orange face through the clouds, and even the dead grass and flowers near the golf course were beautiful. 

I go in Tuesday to have this baby. People keep asking me if I am nervous. I tell them I won't be nervous until I climb on the table. Or when the doctor begins at ask me, 'Does this feel sharp or dull?'

So, blog-land, you may not hear from me for awhile. But you WILL hear from me. 

Friday, June 15, 2012

Still Alive

We have officially closed the sale of our townhouse and moved in with my in-laws. I got the call from our realtor on Friday at 2:41 pm asking if we could move that weekend. The only answer was yes. 
I took a moment to say goodbye to the first house I made into a home...the first place I brought my son to...the place I bought with my husband. Some memories are sweet, some a less so.
We are grateful for an approved short sale in this economy and for generous in laws willing to take us in. We are doing our best to keep everyone's lives right side up. We are grateful to our friends who dropped everything to come help us move. I wasn't much help, being 600 months pregnant and quite large. 
I am currently rather exhausted, so I am going to ignore my to do list and go cuddle on the couch with the kiddo and shut my eyes.
More someday. 

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Photoless, But Humorous

Microscopic paperwork bullshit delays closing date on townhouse AGAIN. If I only knew whose desk upon which to shit. 

Had a fun playdate today at The Treehouse in Lake Zurich. The highlight for me was when my son brought me the old Band-Aid that fell off his knee. 

Uncomfortable and unexpected pregnancy symptoms have cropped up. Nothing serious. Annoying. 

I am fairly sure that everyone else in our building that was here when we bought the place has moved out. My jealousy is shameful. 

We got an X-Box that looks like R2D2. 

I am debating writing an angry expose on Lush Fresh Handmade Cosmetics...from the point of view of a former employee. Part of me hopes they see it. Another part knows they might see it and will very likely not give a shit. 

Contact lenses are WAY better than glasses. After 20-some years of wearing 

Day's end finds me with many stains on my large tummy. 

My nail polish chipped after ONE DAY. What the fuck. 

Joan Holloway/Harris from Mad Men will forever be an idol of mine. 

That's all. 

Monday, May 21, 2012

Shoe Lust List

Modcloth has great is my completely biased-ly curated list for you:

Because tall boots are the best

Tall flat boots are also best

If I had silver sequined pants, I would wear them with these.

Wear with darkdark bellbottoms



Who doesn't enjoy an interesting wedge?

Because my bestie has perfect nude pumps, I must also have them.

Because Joan Holloway has these. 


These are more shoes I would wear on the daily. 

Perfect badass black wedge booties. 

All photos from Modcloth
I think it is safe to say that plenty of these shoes would be fit for a drag queen, and I am okay with that. 
Here's my issue...I'm already on the tall side of average. But I REALLY like tall shoes. When I wear tall shoes, I am like...TALL. And people are like...what's up with you being all TALL AND SHIT?
And all I can do is point down. They usually get it if they are chicks, man. 

Wednesday, May 16, 2012


Today I am quite grateful that I have medical insurance and that I live in an age in which I have options. 

I don't think I've ever told my son's birth story here...don't worry, I won't. I'll sum up. 

He was gargantuan. I REALLY tried to have him come out naturally.
It wasn't happening. The docs had to go get him. Which was fine. 

Now I am gestating my second child. Yesterday I went for my growth ultrasound at 30 weeks. 

I wish I had a photo of the doctor's face when she told me the size. 

The child inside me is currently growing 2-3 weeks ahead of schedule. (and yes, I am like 95% sure of my dates as far as due date calculation goes)

4.8 pounds. SHIT man. I mean, that's great! Big babies don't seem fragile! They have really cute roundness! Chubby cheeks! Pudgy tummies! yay!

I truly am grateful to have a healthy baby. I am GOBSMACKED that this one is going to be another gargantuan one. My theory with the first baby was that his size was partly due my my ingestion of Hostess cupcakes, ramen , McDonald's breakfasts, Oreos. So with this one I haven't really (REALLY) given myself over completely to temptation (just kind of...I mean, when ELSE do I get to eat whatever I want?). 

Apparently genetics has other plans for me. 

I don't think I have ever been more happy to hear these words: 
"We can do the c-section a week before your due date. We don't want you to go into labor."


My MD also moved my due date up a week, so I now have TWO weeks LESS to be pregnant than I thought! 


July tenth sound good? I like that date. 

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Five Years

 Five years ago today we went to the chapel and got married. Then we had a really big party, and it was a blast. Nearly everyone in the entire world we love was there. 

 My lovely girls, our splendid (former) pastor, and the happy couple. 
We toasted our union with handblown glass beer boots from Germany. No pansy-ass champagne flutes for us. 
I could keep posting photos from the wedding. It was so much fun.
But a wedding is one day, while a marriage is forever. 
We have had quite a bit thrown at us, and we are both grateful for each other, and for the shared faith that grounds us and keeps us sane. 
To forever, Hunney. I laove you. 

Friday, May 11, 2012

A Letter

Dearest Body of Mine,

First of all , I would like to express my extreme appreciation for your continued health. You have provided me with many pleasant experiences: dancing, running, weightlifting, digestion, swimming, etc. You have borne one distinctly amazing child and will do so again in July. You and I together have walked the obesity line but never crossed it. Your ankles are cute and your ears are small. The blue eyes get compliments, and you have REALLY nice hair. I have never broken any of your bones, but I have seen one of them that time I cut my finger open in MN. 
I DO love you.

But this whole pregnancy sinuses thing is kind of bullshit. I don't really appreciate being woken up by my own stupid nose making noise. I understand that you're working on that whole gestation thing, but can we work together on the whole no-whistling-nose thing?

And I agree, the third trimester super sucks. 

-the soul you carry

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Differences Between First and Second

With your first pregnancy, people (or maybe just my husband) say(s) things like, 
'What a magical time for you!'
'Oh my goodness you're gonna be a MOMMY!!!'
'You're glowing, you really are...'

With your second pregnancy, people (or maybe just my husband) say(s) things like:
'TWO Twinkies? You're gonna eat TWO Twinkies?'
'Did you fart AGAIN?'
Me: 'Dang, I am PREGNANT.'
He: 'YEAH you are...'

I don't mean to imply that my husband is insensitive-far from it. His more of a colander. And I really do respect that about him. 

But I really can't help the farting. I'm sorry. I'll stand by an open window/door. 

Saturday, May 5, 2012


This family does nothing gradually. If you know me at all, you know that gradual and subtle is not my style. I am all about bleaching, leopard print, large cabochons, loud music, bright colors...

I am also, apparently about major life changes all at once. 

When DH and I were first married, we bought this townhouse the weekend after the wedding. Then we moved and I got knocked up within 2 months of that. Oh, and did I mention he was studying for his CPA degree? (I probably have...)

Well...round 2 is upon us. 

DH starts his new job on Monday. My last day as a paid employee is Tuesday. Our short sale was approved yesterday. The buyer wants to close before June 4th. I am due to birth a child July 21. 

So, like, yay! But, also...DAMN. 

Friday, May 4, 2012

Is This a Joke?

When my son was born, he slept and fed in 2 hour increments, for which I was truly grateful. I felt somewhat energized and lucky that he would fall right back asleep while feeding at night. 

It was awesome, and after the initial new-parent exhaustion, we fell into a good routine and I could get some more sleep. 

But the past few days have been tough. Milo will NOT stay in his bed. He wants to sleep in my bed with me. Which might be cool...but...

He literally punches me in his sleep. He kicks. He tosses and turns.  LAST NIGHT he was FREAKING OUT because his HEAD WAS ITCHY!!! WHAT THE HELL???!?!

There was a thunderstorm last night, and I will never turn a scared kid out of my bed, but the itchy head thing kind of pissed me off. Jeez man.

I am super tired. I keep trying to tell myself that this is NOTHING compared to what will happen once baby comes. But shit man, I want to SLEEP. 

No, kiddo does NOT nap anymore. The best I can hope for is 20 minutes of shuteye this afternoon while he watches Adventure Time. 

Last night and the night before my husband has gone out with people from his office. He RARELY if ever does this, and seeing as this is his last week there, people wanted to take him out. 

This means literal 14-hour days alone with kiddo for me. Which...okay...but...shit man...(I said that like Bukowski during Hostage).


Wednesday, May 2, 2012


Pregnancy causes some vivid dreams for me this time around. 

This morning I dreamt that I gave birth to an enormous baby girl with black hair. 

And that my sister Megan came in and told me that she liked her clothes (like, the blanket I swaddled her in. Weird).

My tummy has gotten to the get-in-the-way size. I keep bumping it into things, and my center of balance is thrown way off. 

I drop at least six things before noon. 

But I am happy to let this baby continue to marinate. 

Monday, April 30, 2012

Conversations. And A Reason.

Yesterday my darling husband dropped me off at the Ulta Benefit Brow Bar by our house so that I could get my complimentary birthday eyebrow shaping. 

I had made the appointment for 1:20 in the afternoon, then we got caught up in eating breakfast and finding Milo a Club Penguin toy...
I was late. So by the time I made it into the store, the eyebrow lady had taken a walk in. Totally understandable. I expected it. 

So I hovered around, looking at the Benefit products (none of which I can afford currently, haha). I've liked them for years and it was nice to be un-rushed and able to swatch some things I'd wanted to try. This also gave me an opportunity to overhear the conversation going on between the aesthetician and her client. 

I wasn't eavesdropping...we were in the same space and I really couldn't help but hear what the two women were saying. 

From what I could surmise, Client Lady had some sort of recurring health problem. She mentioned the Mayo clinic and many doctor's visits. Aesthetician Lady (an older woman) was sympathetic, empathetic and kept saying how CL was an inspiration.

I didn't listen any more closely than that. They obviously shared some sort of moment. I watched as the two women hugged each other and exchanged business cards. 

Understandably, I was curious about what type of conversation AL and I would have. Women generally talk to me about being pregnant, and men rarely talk to me at all unless they have to (i.e., I am at work). This woman was around my grandmother's age, so really...anything could've happened. I wondered how 'deep' the conversation would get. If she would mention her prior client. If she would seem sad or wistful. 

Our conversation went as many of the type do...we chatted about skincare, family, eyebrows, eyelashes...the type of thing a woman chats with her stylist/aesthetician about. 

It was the total opposite of AL's prior conversation. 

This is one of the reasons I really want to attend cosmetology school in the future. I want to be able to have such varied and interesting interactions with people. 
Plus...the beauty business is recession-proof and I think I could make a lot of money there. I wouldn't have to work retail OR wait tables!!

Before I Forget...

...what we did in Florida, I had better shake a leg and get these posts done!!!
Our second day was spent at Hollywood Studios (my favorite!)
Waiting to meet Buzz and Woody.

MuppetVision 3-D made me happy years ago, and did not disappoint this time. 

They took off right after this. 

This is apparently the truck that inspired the design of Mater. 

Shaking our fists at Evil Zurg. 

On the one day it was warm enough to go in the pool, Milo was a CHAMP! He put on that life jacket and hung out in the 'deep' end with me for an hour! He also went down the water slide all by himself. And yes, we WERE two of the palest people at the pool .

We spent our third day at Magic Kingdom, and the last morning at Animal Kingdom...the photo order gets a little messed up here. 

Tree of Life. REALLY COOL

Animal butts

We swtiched around some of our meal plan points and upgraded to a table service at Citricos, at the Grand Floridian Resort. SO amazing!!!! Brian had osso bucco and I had Madiera-braised short ribs. Then for dessert I had a tropical fruit creme brulee and Brian had a blood orange tart (that he didn't really like). But my creme brulee was phenomenal. 
Milo had some Goldfish crackers and then he made ice cream soup. Gross. 
Please ignore my weird alien hand. 
More tomorrow. Photos of not my alien hands.