June 2010

(be)cause cuz

June 30, 2010

This post is brought to you by Max, Miles, Zach and Asher. And Wordless Wednesday at 5 Minutes for Mom. And the colors black and white. And the number four. Thank you for allowing me to pop up in your inbox and for reading my words, silly or serious. I appreciate you. ~Heather


Obviously, I could not think of a title for this post. Allison called me to let me know. (Because she is so often my brain and has figured out by now that I would most likely be oblivious if left on my own without her brain.) Her message said, You’ve been nominated in two categories for a BlogLuxe Award. I just wanted you to know they have your link wrong on the site. Congratulations! (Of course, her lovely humility prevented her from also telling me that she herself is nominated in 2 categories.) (GO ALLISON!) All I heard was, “You’ve been nominated.” And then I was just completely confused. Me? Huh? Wha? I found out my (also nominated-for Rage Against the Minivan) friend Kristen (thank you, lady) is one of the people who nominated The Extraordinary Ordinary for this lovely thing~ (this is a picture I stole from the very deservingly nominated, Casey […]


On day one, you taught me that having a c-section didn’t make me a failurebecause I had you. On day 2 I studied all your sleeping faces, all day longand I loved even the frumpy grumpy onesand you still make themand somehow, I love them even more In your first monthsyou showed me what peace looks likeand how it would feel when you’re sickalways like I’m sick, but worse You’ve always shown mejoypure joyin the smallest things In your first few years, I learned that so much of what I know and believe is because of you.You are five years of love and light, struggle and growth and absolutely nothing I would trade.Because of you I know what an old soul in a small body can bring to this life, and I know that I will always always love and accept you…no.matter.what. And I know that I say be careful too often, but […]



June 26, 2010

I need willpower. I’m hungry and thirsty and looking for a place to sleep. I know what I need. I can rise up in the morning and tell myself, today I will do the right things, and then I believe I will reap the rewards of self-discipline and self-control. My intentions are so good that I believe I’ll do it all (and more) and then maybe I’ll feel more peaceful. As if everything works like checks and balances and tit for tat and punishment and reward. Do ‘A’ – Get ‘B’ I need to believe in grace because I can’t believe A gets B because so often I get a really good B without finishing my A, without following through or doing my good-intended right thing. Grace isn’t fair in the best possible way. Grace does not fit in a box, but it remains in all things even though it blows my mind […]


summer rules

June 25, 2010

1. Run, don’t walk, to the park. 2. Sneak snacks no matter what time it is. 3. Chase chipmunks with squeal-y matching friends. 4. Skip naps and take long baths, washing off the lake or the pool or the sand or the dirt or the all of the above. 5. Worry less about getting clean and more about getting fun. 6. Look long at the water and the sky while you stay up late.7. In other words, ignore the rules. Thank you for allowing me to pop up in your inbox and for reading my words, silly or serious. I appreciate you. ~Heather


here’s the down low

June 24, 2010

I was thinking about how many things I bring up in this space, never to revisit them again (ahem, thoughts of homeschooling? Wanting another baby? Other stuff I can’t think of right now?) And then I thought about how writing about recovery and sobriety and addiction has sort of taken over my blog. So that means that the tone is often…heavy, man. Then I thought, I hardly ever update on Asher’s health anymore and I rarely do “From the Mouth of Miles” posts these days. The thing is, it all happened naturally. Asher is doing really well, and when Miles talks about things that I want to share with the world, I censor myself a bit more because I don’t want him to look back on these pages and wonder why I made every stinking little thing public knowledge, you know?There’s a huge difference in life these days. When I compare last year […]


I’ve been given (or have found all on my own) some great information since I spilled the beans the other day, letting ya’ll know I’d like to write a book. So I said to myself, Sheesh Heather, you should share these resources, like in a post or something. And then I agreed with myself that I should do just that. Right now. In this here post.You’re welcome. Firstly, my blog friend Becca has done an excellent series on writing on her blog. If you’re interested in writing fiction, this series will become a go-to place for information on all things plot and character growth. (Click on “series on writing” above to start at the beginning.) Nextly, Jennifer of Conversion Diary sent me some must-read book titles. Because I adore Jennifer, her wisdom and talent, I share them with you now: Writing the Breakout Novel by Donald Maass. (His book The Fire in Fiction […]



June 22, 2010

A day at the water park, cooling off in the water and soaking up the sun? Summer bliss in my book. (And this place is a mere three blocks from our house-I love that.) I’m pretty sure these water park days will be ear-marked in the memory books of my boys, too. Asher, Miles and strong friend, E Oh My Serious Fun. I love to watch them play in the water, rush down the slide, water drops dripping from their noses. I love the way water keeps their minds busy for hours, while I sit and take it all in. But this last time, what I loved the most was the way Asher snuggled into me after getting hurt, wrapped in a towel and fell fast asleep. It’s been a really long time since I snuggled a sleeping boy baby, rocking back and forth and nuzzling blond hair. (They are just growing far […]


magical characters

June 20, 2010

A good friend called recently and told me that she woke up one morning with characters having a conversation in her head. (No, she’s not hallucinating…she’s imagining. Which is totally different. Kind of.) She said that a story just up and started to unfold, right there, without her trying to conjure it up, and that these characters continue their own story every day all on their own. She simply writes down what they’re doing and saying after she listens in on them. Back when we had this conversation, my friend had written over 250 pages. In 3 weeks. Dude. She had no dream or intention of writing a book. It just kinda happened to her, and now she’s got the bug and she just can’t stop thinking about her book and she can’t stop writing. Uh yeah, I’m totally jealous. I’m not gonna lie. I do want to write a book. I’ve wanted […]



June 19, 2010

I read something last night. It was written by a woman who struggled with alcoholism like I do and it said that when she drank to enjoy it, she couldn’t control her drinking, and when she tried to control her drinking, to drink less, she didn’t enjoy it at all. Seems kind of obvious that this would be the case for an alcoholic, but it takes most of us a really long time to recognize this reality. I thought about all the times in my life that I could, for one reason or another, only have a couple of drinks at a time. Maybe it was in the presence of non-drinking people, or we were about to go to a movie, or any number of things. And I realized how true it was, that I would get so uncomfortable with only a couple of drinks. I didn’t see the point in that at […]


(Grandma, I’m about to make no sense to you. So please don’t feel bad if you don’t get what I’m talking about. I love you!)~~~~~ “Now this is a story all about how my life got flipped, turned upside-down, now I’d like to take a minute, just sit right there, and I’ll tell you how I became The Prince….” Oh wait…I love that song, but it’s just (sadly) not my story… Actually, this is a story all about how The Serenity Suite at BlogHer ’10 came to be. It’s actually more exciting than “shootin’ some b-ball outside of the school…”Maggie and I were talking about BlogHer ’10 on the phone one night right after we quit drinking, “when a couple of guys who were up to no good, started makin’ trouble in my neighborhood….”Or wait….okay, um…we started talking about how Maggie is speaking at the conference this year and then I was being […]


hamster wheel

June 16, 2010

So often I expect perfection from myself in motherhood, at least somewhere in the back of my mind I do. I’m on a hamster wheel to nowhere when I do that. I’m pulling the wheel under and over me and back around again with thoughts of perfect meals and a perfect education and perfect faith and a perfect home. Those thoughts are slowing these days, I’m sooooo grateful for that. Last night Miles rode his small blue bike while I jog/walked next to him and he said it would be a really good day if we could spend it that way, all day. He was riding along and thinking he was having the best time of his life and he wanted it to go on and on like a hamster wheel. That’s all he wanted, just a little adventure on a little bike, with me. He’s right, ya know. Keeping it simple is […]


Moooo. Peeew.

June 15, 2010

We went to a Dairy Days event. Yes, this confirms it. We live in the country now. Farms stink. (The child would not let go of his nose-I hope he didn’t offend the cows.) Oh look. That one looks offended. Oh well…let’s just look at this guy instead… The next day, our little dude was on the front page of the local paper on this very same tractor. Now we have to fight off the paparazzi like never before. It’s kind of hard having a child star. The End. Thank you for allowing me to pop up in your inbox and for reading my words, silly or serious. I appreciate you. ~Heather


spontaneous dichotomies

June 14, 2010

The roads are the kind that dip and swirl, pulling your stomach with them. My iPod was on shuffle and the songs matched this experience and I knew that was grace. I was keenly aware of grace. I listened to an entire audiobook about grace on my seven hour drive, and I thought, it’s everywhere I look. I can see it. This is what I mean by extraordinary. It was in the stacked green trees on the hills and on the cows in the fields, and my heart started revving up when I looked at the GPS and saw I was only a mile away. I knew I was about to see one of my life’s most treasured grace faces, smiling at me in a deeply rooted recognition of soul. I’m not making it up when I say that the sun peeked through the clouds right in that moment, and then disappeared for […]


This is Heather. She’s not naked. Her dress is strapless. But you knew that. Yes. Yet another Heather born in the 70’s. Heather is one of my dearest friends, and she was married last weekend. It was a beautiful day full of bluegrass music and sun and friends and family. I love my Heather, and have since elementary school. We’re Heather squared, or The Heathers. The day before the wedding, I happened upon a new shoppe in the small town in which we live. I opened the door with low expectations. After all, this is rural Minnesota so let’s just say the shopping is…limited. And then a miracle occurred. Well, okay. Maybe it wasn’t a miracle. I mean, I don’t even really LIKE shopping much at all. But do you wanna know what I do like? Knowing that all I have to do is go to ONE store and I will love everything […]


But sometimes, when you take two ordinary things and put them together at the same time and in the same place, there’s nothing ordinary about them at all. – Charlotte’s WebI thought I was most likely the only person in my particular type of recovery while at the Casual Blogger Conference. I was surrounded by my Mormon friends, who I figured didn’t struggle with alcoholism since part of their faith requires abstinence from booze. Of course that’s a naive thing to think, and it’s not that I believe all Mormons are the same, I don’t. It’s just that in my insecurity, I assumed I was the only one completely tuned into the fact that there was no alcohol being served at the conference events. Of course, this was good for me and I’m not drinking, so why think about it? Well, because I’m an alcoholic and part of my brain is always rolling […]


Ryan and I went to the wedding of a dear friend last Friday.And I did get all {Gussy}eeed up, for the first time in a very long time. I had the dress and the jewelry and I said to myself, but I still need a {Gussy} bag. I really do. I would have enjoyed this little wristlet for the wedding…Yeah, I’m gonna have to get one, dontcha know? And also, I shall purchase this cutie patootie for my computer-toting… Now, won’t you come along with me to Mama Manifesto, and I’ll give you a chance to win some {Gussy} for yourself. One last time. Say it with me….{Gusssssy} I love. Now let’s go! (click click win win) ~COMMENTS ARE CLOSED HERE, BUT TOTALLY OPEN AT MAMA MANIFESTO~ Thank you for allowing me to pop up in your inbox and for reading my words, silly or serious. I appreciate you. ~Heather

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June 7, 2010

It’s been nearly five months since we moved. Five months. This has been the very most surreal five months of my life, I’m pretty sure. I stopped drinking not long after we came here so everything was literally and figuratively new for me, for us. Today, when Ryan finished building a fence for our backyard, I thought about it all, again. The fence means that our boys can run in and out without so much worry and checking. And it also meant so many other analogous things, and I really liked that it also means that our dog can finally be free of this… In our previous fenced backyard, our Tia Maria dog had free reign within the parameters of the fence. She was just fine with that. It was as if she knew the fence was there to protect her, to keep her home. Every once and a while she would get […]


Little Brother, you’re up.No really. It’ll be okay… No. You may not have either of them.They are MINE.The End. Oh P.S. I want to say thank you for your comments on my last post. Because of this bumpy sobriety journey, that kind of post means much to me, and so your words of encouragement, grace, friendship, and love…well, they totally lift me up. Thank you. Thank you for allowing me to pop up in your inbox and for reading my words, silly or serious. I appreciate you. ~Heather


The way home

June 3, 2010

I am on a flight where you choose your own seat and this is new to me. At the same time that this empowers me, it also makes me feel like the unpopular kid in the lunch room, searching frantically for one of the last spaces and a welcoming face. Much like the last four and a half months of sobriety, I think, because I always think in analogies. I can’t help it. I spot the middle seat in the exit row and ask the Aisle Man if it’s taken. He kindly says it’s yours and I slide in and stretch my legs and start to realize he’s been drinking. He makes jokes that aren’t funny, loudly, trying to entertain the whole plane. Some people chuckle softly, a courtesy laugh. Others shift uncomfortably in their seats, trying to ignore his volume and obvious drunkenness. He orders a drink and then another on a […]


*written on Sunday* I’m sitting in a hotel room by myself. Melissa and Kristen had earlier flights today and so they’re gone. (sad face) There’s an ad on TV right now for a bracelet you can wear that will solve all your problems. Seriously, I need one. According to the riveting infomercial this bracelet makes you feel happy and sleep soundly and also keeps you from tipping over when someone pulls really hard on your arm. When I pushed the ‘on’ button on the television I realized that this is the first time the zone-out box has been on in this room the entire time we were here. And just look at what we’ve been missing! (sarcasm) It’s really good for me to do things like this. (Not the TV watching, but the attending of the blog conference.) What I mean by that is that it’s good to step out of my comfort […]