Monday, July 30, 2012

full circle

i know i've already posted about the end of m's school, and then- surprise!- the real end of school, since she had three weeks of summer "camp" (ahem, it's exactly the same as school, my friends, but it's in the summer and you bring your own snack- hence "camp") before her very, very last day.

so feel free to skip this post, and wait for my (yes- they are coming! promise!) final posts about our trip to oregon. somehow life went on fast forward the second we got home and haven't quite gotten to uploading those pictures and putting them on here. i live under the delusion that i am a master multi-tasker and can whip things out in just a few minutes, but then i remember that no, not really; i'm slow, and it takes me forever to get things done, especially when it involves a blog post.

last week i potentially realized why i need to process this transition ad-nauseam. when i was growing up, i happened to switch schools a lot- the combination of my family moving multiple times and changing from private to public to private to public schools meant that i changed schools in 2nd, 4th, 7th, 8th, 9th, and 10th grade. not my favorite to be the new kid, and i'm sure it has contributed to my need to fully process transitions along the way. or maybe not. who knows.

you may remember me writing about the first time we went to jwposd. matt and i walked into a classroom of some of the older kids- deaf kids who were about to transition to kindergarten or first grade- holding our itty bitty two month old baby. at the time i don't think i'd ever seen anyone wearing a cochlear implant that i could recall. this cute, vivacious little munchkin, mia, with bilateral implants, walked right up to us and our baby. "hi. i'm mia. is your baby deaf?" no one had asked me that yet. i was at the point where i could hardly say deaf without crying, and just being at a deaf school was super emotional. this chatty little deaf girl, happy as could be, was apparently obsessed with babies, so she asked us all of these questions about m, and talked us up for a few minutes. it was this moment in time where i saw this glimpse of the future- a few years out when my little girl would be thriving.

fast forward:
my girl is thriving.

her favorite spot, standing next to one of her favorite people, her "sister" lily in morning music the last week of school:

 morning music, my favorite part of the day:
 visiting vonnie in the office to get a little candy treat, ruby's favorite part of the day:
 some of my favorites, other moms:
(or "the deaf moms" as matt calls us, even though our kids have ranges of hearing loss. we all started together when our little ones were babies and toddlers!)

fast forward:
one of my favorite things is talking to newly diagnosed families. often i meet them when they are on their tour of the school, still somewhat shellshocked to have a child with hearing loss. i love talking to them because i remember how it felt to first be at jwposd, to be struggling to wrestle hearing aids and later implants on a feisty baby, to feel unsure of what the future held.

the last week of school i met a couple of new families touring with babies. one mom was holding her profoundly deaf five month old baby boy in her arms, his teeny hearing aids pressed into his even tinier ears. i'd finished talking to her, and she'd walked down the hallway to see more of the school and to meet other parents.

m had just gotten out of class and was running down to get her things out of her cubby when she spotted the baby. she raced down the hall to be and said, "mom! i see that baby with hearing aids!" sometimes she gets shy with new people, but i could tell she wanted to go meet him and his mom. (she is currently fascinated by meeting new people who are just like her- meaning that they are deaf and either younger or older than she is) so i said, "you should go down and ask his mommy what his name is!" she turned, skipped down the hallway and went right up to the mom. (later she told me, "mom, i had to be very patient and keep saying excuse me because those moms were really talking a lot") she introduced herself and talked to the new mom about her baby. the mom said, "see? he has hearing aids!" and my 4 year old girl flipped her hair back, struck a pose, and proud as could be announced, "well, i have cochlear implants!" before turning to go play with her friends.

i thought back to that moment, four years ago, when mia, talking to our little deaf baby, gave me a vision of what could be. i thought about how this season at jwposd had brought us full circle.

someday i will wonder how i drove so far for so many days a week for so long. someday that five month old baby that m bounded up to will be the little boy talking to new parents, showing off his implants. someday i will sit on an alumni parent panel passing along our family's victories and griefs.

and someday
my daughter will be all grown up,
and will be sharing her very own story in her very own strong and beautiful voice.
in many ways, she already is.

Friday, July 27, 2012


goes my heart!
and now?
yesterday was m's
last day of summer school,
which is m's end of the road at her deaf school.
of course ruby has been there since she was a teeny tiny newborn in my arms,
so it is the end of a season for her too.
(she thinks she is in her own personal class of two with her bestie ella, 
also a younger sibling of one of m's classmates)

my girls are so big:
how can it be that i have big girls and no more babies?

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

exhibit a, y'all

tomorrow is m's last day at her oral deaf school! (insert many emotions, including disbelief, here)

last night i took this little video of her singing to share with her morning music teacher at school (she gives her a little shout out in the last few seconds), and it pretty much sums up why we made the trek for almost four years to a school an hour away. my girl may never have a record deal, but listen to my deaf munchkin's sweet little song:

Monday, July 23, 2012

please excuse this interruption

here's my little family:
we need a little solo hangtime today, y'all.
in the last month...
we've had a glorious week of vacation in tahoe, launched back into m's summer school at her deaf school, had far away family staying with us, then family watching our girls so matt and i could get away for EIGHT days, and lastly, five teenagers staying at our house this past week as sort of an alternative to summer camp (which means matt & i provided the programming).

phew! good things, all good things.


my house is a mess
my blog is neglected
i have deadlines to get to
and about 590 emails to return

but my girls desperately need some mommy-attention-&-nothing-to-do-and-no-one-to-see-time today.

can't wait to share some of the last month's adventures with you, but for now?
off to play with my girls.

Saturday, July 14, 2012


just tried to post a new oregon post and wham, with a touch of a button my last post went poof and reverted to my very original draft. boo.

i really don't love blogging form my phone for this very reason- it's kind of tempermental and seems to obliterate posts way too fast for my liking.

all that to say: we are still in oregon. (yesterday, today and tomorrow we are in portland, then we head home.) we are loving this week. and we (ahem, ok, it's mostly me) are also missing our girls. more to come, when i can actually post some of this week's awesomeness!

any portland tips?

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Monday, July 9, 2012

It's that time again...

for the alameda county fair! every time I take the girls to the fair (i think my mom and i have taken them for three years now) i remember going back when I was in high school. These days I have two kids in tow and we hit a much different area of the fair: the animals. M declared, "maybe we should save the rides for next year do ruby can go on them too." the girls love the Alaskan pig races so we check out that and the 4-h animals and then enjoy some ridiculously overpriced soft serve times! Do you go to the fair?

(ps excuse the random punctuation- writing this post from my phone as Matt & I head out on a road trip sand kids!)

Wednesday, July 4, 2012


the fourth of july, truncated version:
all morning we cleaned the house. fun times (no photo, all, sorry.)

then, while i made plum and nectarine salsa, i sang along to u2 for a long time.
made me happy & matt kindly obliged:
aforementioned salsas:
we went to our friends' house for independence day festivities.
they have the best assortment of succulents!
while we were there someone asked me about what my blog was about. 
i don't know- it's kind of random, like me. i said my kids, food, life...
throw in some deafness & art & celebrity trash and i'd say that covers it!

little m & all the other girls were enamored with the real-live teenager that was there. 
she was followed around all afternoon and evening by five little girls, all obsessed with her.
ruby decked out in red white & blue, showing me her picture pose
late at night (yep, as in 10:30 or so), matt and m sat out in the front yard 
watching all of our neighbors set of fireworks.
who needs the city fireworks when you live where i do?
clean house, yummy food, good friends, and sparkles in the sky!
it was a good day.
happy fourth of july!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

you. guys.

a. being on vacation is way better than real life

b. i want s'mores right now

c. how can genetics predispose me to so many under eye wrinkles and bags. for. the. love. (see above photo in case you protest)

d. tonight we had fancy dinner, as conceived and executed by m. we raided her dress up clothes, i threw on a dress and lots of mis-matching accessories and matt donned a tie and crown. (apparently fancy is also synonymous with royal) then m set the table with what she considered to be fancy. good times until ruby had a meltdown & the girls marched up to bed, and somewhere in there ruby bit my leg (yes, i said bit).

e. i used to love fireworks. then i lived in oakland and there are enough fireworks per capita to put me in an early grave, or in the very least experience heart palpatations. in case you are wondering, my street sounds like world war 3. not a fan.

f. have you gone to any of your high school reunions? i went to my 20th this weekend (see under eye wrinkles under c.) and although that could be a post in and of itself, suffice it to say: i am glad i went. there were a bunch of no shows who i would've loved to see, but it was good to see the people i did. and also, this is my question: is it really a compliment when people say, "you look exactly the same as you did in high school!" let me remind you that i graduated in 1992. so that era was maybe not the best for one's personal appearance looking optimal. braided belts and boxers as shorts ring a bell for anyone?

g. also, i read the second and third hunger games books last week. bam.

h. yesterday was my mom's birthday. she's lovely & amazing, y'all.

i. how can my children utterly exasperate me & be adorable all in the same day? killing me. lest you think they are this cute all the time-
you are wrong. that's only part of the time.
but when they're cute, they're pretty cute.

i'll leave you on that note,
to the tune of fireworks exploding all around.