fishes and bears and penguins and dragons (oh, my.)

I think it’s been over a month since I’ve posted, though I’m so grateful to J for keeping us afloat. My silence in what is such a vital space for me should give you some idea of how too.too.too busy I’ve been with this job cycle. I’m keeping up with mamahood, but I’m neglecting all of my friends and most of my (non-Bram) family. I’m for sure neglecting myself. I’m averaging close to an application a day right now, and they take an average of five hours to construct. With an average of three hours of childcare a day and two courses to teach… well there are no minutes. I feel whiplashed. I think I left my soul more than a few exits back. And this won’t even be a proper catch up because I’m barely peeking up through the mountain of grading that has to get done during this nap. But a few of you have reached out with some concern, and we have great news about our Dragon that’s worthy of documentation. So here’s the tiniest little update, with a promise for more by the end of this month, when things slow down again.

  • Dragon is healthy! Strong and healthy and just… different from his brother. He moves differently. He looks similar in U/S photos, but there’s just something lovely and different about him. But oh yeah: Dragon is a boy. And nineteen weeks on Wednesday. And we are mad for him.
  • J finished her DONA doula certification! Between working full time and raising our boy and staring down the no.shortage.of.difficulties we’ve faced in the last two years, I’m not even sure how she managed it. What I DO know is that she is impressive and brave, and so many families will be blessed by her willingness to serve in this way. I could not be more proud of her, nor more in love.
  • Because my broken foot took the wind out of all of our travel plans for the summer, we have felt home-bound, and restless, and (though terribly busy) desperate to escape even for the tiniest moment. We have something fabulous on the books for this coming weekend, but this past weekend, my mom gave us our Christmas present early: a trip with her to Chicago to take the boy to Shedd. It was amazing. The routine of early parenthood gets so tiring. As does the routine of frugality. The routines of space and place and cooking and playing and picking up. Everything again and again with almost none of the scenery changing. This weekend was none of that. My mom bought us the most delicious food and paid our way into everything so we didn’t have to obsess over what it was doing to our budget. And the city! Every single time I make it to a city I remember that the buildings and the smells and the crush of people make my soul come to life. Even standing in the dark, cold, pouring rain praying for a cab felt exhilarating. It was such a gift: the getting away. And the seeing Bram see FISHES like sea turtles and whales?! Well, there are no words for that. Really: I’m not sure any family ever needed a whirlwind day away as badly as we did.

So there’s more to say, but no time, so: photos.

We went to Chicago when B was in J’s belly, and we bought him our first gift to him – a white bunny named Bernard – at the Macy’s downtown. So this time, when we found ourselves downtown with an hour to spare and realized that we still hadn’t gotten Dragon anything yet, we thought we’d do the same. We couldn’t find a dragon, but we did find this sweet fella, whom we’ve named Henry November. Bram approves of our choice for his brother’s first gift.


One of the things B got to do is RIDE THE TRAIN TO CHICAGO. Dude. [Babywearing geekdom: How stunning is the Toddler Tula I’m wearing him in? It was a gift from the seriously generous M and S.]


My loves: J, Dragon, Bramble, and the city. Our gorgeous hotel room happened to look out over a fire station. On trash day. What great good toddler fortune!!



Wonderful, patient, generous Bubbie and her penguin-grandbaby taking on a Shedd slide.


Train Captain Bram blowing Dinah’s horn on his second-ever Halloween.


And finally: our small, fierce, kind, gentle-feeling Dragon.




11 thoughts on “fishes and bears and penguins and dragons (oh, my.)

  1. I’m glad for the update. As always, it’s been nice to hear J’s voice, but I was beginning to get a bit worried about you. Glad things are going well, despite the business. Hope they slow down to a point of enjoyment soon.

    Also, getting away for a weekend sounds HEAVENLY. Glad you enjoyed yourselves.

  2. I love that we worry about each other in this community. I am more glad that the worry was not necessary. I am so glad you all made it to Chicago. Going to the Shedd with any sort of kid is simply magical. I can’t imagine the kind of heaven you were all in. As for the busy life, I hope you keep on weathering it with the grace and sanity that you always seem to manage. I will be thinking of you and wishing for slower, calmer days.

  3. Oh, so good to get this update. Hooray for healthy sweet boy Dragon. Hooray for your plucky little family. Keep on. Thinking of you through this job cycle. Indeed, you’re juggling a great deal. May it end in many interviews (and offers!)

  4. I’m glad you had a relaxing weekend and got some energizing outings and TRAINS! I hope everyone enjoyed you singing the inevitable song… :) Hoping good, good (Illinois, local) hiring thoughts for you, and continued strong, growing thoughts for J and Dragon!

  5. I’m sorry everything is so crazy with applications. I miss hearing more from you! Hopefully all your hard work will pay off with an amazing new job. I’m thinking of you and your family.

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