Just Write 153

September 16, 2014

I did not look at my email even one time yesterday. It was a Monday and a perfectly beautiful day, and I worked at The Middle Fork and you guys should have seen it. All the tables were full and people were waiting in the entry and thank the good Lord that one of the owners was there to man the cash register and make fancy lattes and such. My feet hurt. I love it when that place is busy. Except I say really random things to the people at the tables sometimes because I’m trying to remember so many things at once and move faster than I can. And my weird humor up and jumps right out when I’m overwhelmed, so there you have it. For instance, this one time, some people were trying to get a high chair to fit behind their table, in a corner, lifting it up and over. […]


Just Write {136}

May 20, 2014

Their dad was on a work trip and we were eating dinner, sitting together at the round white table. I don’t know which house will have the table. These are the things I’m answering, for my children. It’s impossible that this is what I’m answering, but I am. At their ages, there is some confusion about divorce and the finality of it, and confusion on how we will have all of our things, that we have now, but split up, in two places. I don’t know if they understand that this means the end of our marriage. A marriage that was also theirs, in the way that children connect. The love stays, the parenting stays, the belonging stays…I don’t care who gets the white table. Our kids are excited that if Asher is at one house and Miles is at the other, they can still play Minecraft, in tandem. This is mind blowing […]


Just Write {135}

May 13, 2014

Lately he has been hanging out with me, just sitting there on the couch or plopping down on the floor, flat on his back, while I hang clothes in my closet. He talks and talks and talks. Mostly about Legos or Star Wars or other things that he thinks about all the time. The other night, at bedtime, he said he couldn’t get to sleep because of his busy mind. My brain tries to focus on so many things at once, he said. It won’t stop going fast from thing to thing. Oh how I know. And how I wish I could slow it down for him, this boy with his mother’s brain. But I can’t, and maybe he’ll be a writer or think quick on his feet in his work, whatever it is. Maybe he’ll think up the greatest new thing to help people, because of his ideas, the ones that never […]


That lady that gave you the dirty look when your toddler ran in front of her cart at the store, she wants center. So does that man that pulled out in front of you on the way home. And so does that person leaving nasty comments online and that other one who is supposed to be a friend but keeps talking about her and her and you behind backs. It’s a me first society, my husband always says. We’re ants on a hill, running in lines and cutting across and turning our heads from side to side, Can you see me? Or rats in a race, or whatever analogy feels closest to life in year that hold twenty centuries that each hold one hundred and then still thirteen more. One thing will never change and that’s change and the speed of it. Sometimes I don’t even know what we’re racing for? For more, […]


we are…

April 5, 2013

    Let’s go together into spring, shaking the dust from our eyes and ears, spitting it out. It comes from too many damning thoughts, floats around and brings us to sitting, face in the dirt of our own piling. No, you are not lazy, unless you think you are. No, you are not going to be alone forever, unless you think you are. No, you are not going to go unheard. You are not going to stay right here. You are shaking it off and out and today is a day for moving. Out of your head or your very self or even your city. There are things to not ignore, getting trumped by your repetitive thinkings that demean you and rattle around and whisper hurtful and damaging things. The things to not ignore are heart-gut nudges that you choose to ignore because no no no, not that. That sounds hard. That […]


Happy Friday to you. My friend Teri is such a lovely person. When we get on the phone, I feel…comforted. We talk a long time and say more than people usually say and it’s comfortable because she’s unconditional. I just wanted you to know that. On Fridays, Teri has Favorite Quote Fridays on her site Keeping It Personal. She asked me to share one of my favorite quotes this week over there and I was so honored. You can head over to Keeping It Personal to read my quote and why I chose it–how it’s the one that encompasses so much of how I want to live. (Rilke will do that.) What’s one of your favorite quotes? And why do you love it?    You guys, this is Teri’s book, Overcoming the Nevers and I’m reading it right now. So many times I’ve thought about how the 12 steps could help so many […]


where the days go…

May 9, 2012

Asher – (whining) (a lot) Mommy, my finger hurts soooo much. (holding up pointer finger) Me – Oh. What happened? Asher – (still whining) (just keep imagine him whining through this whole post) I don’t knooooow. Me – Oh, I don’t see anything? Asher – (looking closely) I don’t know but I need five band-aids. Me – Five? Well. Five won’t fit. Asher – I need five. Me – How about 2? Asher – Four Me – Four and a half Asher – No. It doesn’t hurt half. It hurts whole. Me – okay, Asher. You’re only getting one band-aid. There’s no blood or anything. Asher – oooooh kaaaaay. We get the band-aid and I go to put it on and Asher is holding up his middle finger. Me – Sweetie, I thought it was this finger? (pointing at pointer finger with my pointer finger) Asher – Oh. Yeah. Right. We put the […]


Just Write {31}

April 17, 2012

My early riser is up with the light. Bouncing around and all chatter and energy. He passes the hours (yes, hours) before school with Nutella and checking in on the baby chicks (yes, chicks) and Legos and Animal Planet. Today we learned about walruses. Walruses apparently get annoyed with each other and jab those big tusks into each other. The narrator man says that’s okay because they heal fast and they’re made of six layers of blubber. On a commercial break, there’s an ad with a woman in a hospital bed. She says she had a stroke because she smoked her whole life. Her son is giving her a sponge bath and she’s talking about how she can’t do anything anymore. She tells smokers to “enjoy your independence now”. I asked Miles what he thought all of that meant and he said that everyone should stop smoking. Then he added that if you […]


well, be still mine

February 23, 2012

::::: Mommy, do you know what my heart is? What’s your heart, Miles? Elsie. ::::: linking with small moments at bigger picture blogs



September 23, 2011

He’s hilarious, this boy. He gets so so so excited about things like popcorn. He jumps up and down and flaps his arms because Friday night is movie night with popcorn. He also loves Fridays because my sister comes to be with him. They run errands and he calls her Auntie Slushy. That’s because she always gets him an icee slushy from the gas station. And then he says ridiculous things like, Daddy! ‘Go’ means poop AND ‘Go’ means drive! Um. Yeah. I worry about him because of his hydrocephalus. I mean, I worry about shunt malfunctions and when he doesn’t feel right, I hover a bit and I ask a lot of questions. But you know what? Other than that, he’s this boy that I don’t really have to worry about. He’s just so happy. He rolls with the punches. He overcomes. He loves life. He listens and he jumps up to […]


art and hilarity

September 18, 2011

We went to an art festival yesterday and the boys created. I love it when they do that. paper water ink flower by Miles (from a coffee filter) drying in the wind If you follow me on Twitter or Facebook, you probably already know, but my boys have been saying THE FUNNIEST things lately. Like yesterday when Miles went to greet Elsie after she woke up and he noticed she was sleeping in a sleep sack (in her crib) and he said, She’s like a little slug…a slug stuck in jail. And then the other day, Asher was in the bathroom and I heard him say, in a robot-like voice, You. have. 55. pees. So I said, What honey? and he answered, Oh nothing, that was just the toilet talking. Last night I was reading them books and the book said that a mother’s eyes sparkle like the stars in the sky. So […]


1. There are things about each of my children that mirror who I am. Some of these parts are appealing, I suppose. Others…notsomuch. One thing that Miles carries of mine is neither good nor bad. Or, maybe, it’s both good and bad. Memory. Fierce memory. Just today he said, Remember that one time when I was three and that fly landed on my hand and I stood very still and it stayed there a long time. I do remember, mostly. I know he remembers entirely. That boy seemed to enter the world intent on memorizing every moment and everything. He hardly ever cried as a baby, so unlike his brother and sister, and looking at him you would have seen a furrowed and concentrated expression. It’s as if he arrived here knowing everything that was going to happen, an old soul, if you will. And it seems if that’s the case, he just […]


monday laser surgery

February 28, 2011

a pudgy little hand and a little chocolate around the corners of his mouth.something spilled on his sweatshirt.long eyelashes.chubby cheeks. An IPod and head phones…who knew. ::::: This morning he took a little Lego light saber and pretended to laser off the age spots on my hands. Isn’t that thoughtful? He would say, “This will hurt just a little bit…zzzz…zzzzt.” I was almost convinced it was working so I sat very still.This is a good start to a (finally) sunny day. Happy Monday, friends. Thank you for allowing me to pop up in your inbox and for reading my words, silly or serious. I appreciate you. ~Heather


Friday’s train

February 25, 2011

I took this picture with an app on my phone, so I realize it’s hard to see, but hopefully you can tell it’s a little acorn hat. Right now it’s sitting up on a vase on our fireplace mantel, waiting to slide over a new little noggin in June. Speaking of the fireplace, sometimes I think we’re going to need to use it forever. We just got almost twenty inches of snow recently and another bunch is expected soon. I tweeted that the snow was starting to feel like a straight jacket. And so is the cold. We had friends over last night and they liked the fireplace. They asked if we had recorded the news show about me and alcoholism and our family. I didn’t know, but Ryan had it saved on our saving thing-a-ma-jig so we watched it with them and my whole body vibrated like I was nervous. I just […]



February 20, 2011

Back when I quit drinking, I gave Miles an explanation I thought he could understand. Then I was a bit astounded at his ability to understand. (I give him all the credit.) This morning Ryan looked at his phone and saw it was the 20th. For us, the 20th always sticks out, a number that shouts SOBRIETY! So he said some congratulatory things to me from the other room, calling them out. Miles figured out what his daddy was referring to and came to me, stood next to me and asked, “Does that mean you had another month of not drinking wine?” “Yes, that’s right, honey.” He beamed and bounced a little bit, gave me a quick little side squeeze and ran off to play. ::::: When I think back on the days when Asher was brand new and Miles was so much smaller, it always stings my heart. It was a hard […]


Me – Asher, I want to tell you something. Asher – (eyes bright, runs right over) What, Mama? Me – Today you are THREE. It’s your birthday today! Asher – oooooh. Will I get a balloon? Me – Yes. Later today….what are you going to do this year, while you’re three?Asher – play wid Zach-Max (cousins)…and brudder…and you (pronounced jew. just sayin‘)….cause I missed jew (very very sad face, oh so downcast, oh his soul)Me – Oh. When was I gone? Asher – (long pouty pause, then giggles, throws his head back) I kidding! Me – Oh, you’re silly. I love you. Asher – I wuz jew, too, Mommy. (gives big hugs, then throws noggin back again to be silly and cracks said noggin on chair.)(just keepin‘ it real, peeps.)(he’s totally fine.) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Cue The Cute: End Cute. Happy Birthday, Asher. Mommy loves you to the sky and back and back up and […]


1. So, that One Room at a Time thing? We’re still doing that, it’s just that it’s taking a really long time to do one room at a time. We’ve been working on the dining room for a while now. I still plan to do some Big Reveals complete with riveting before and after pictures, but stuff keeps getting in the way. Like life. Silly life. 2. I’m really excited to be starting something new here on the ol’ blog. I’m going to be interviewing people, about their life stories and then writing about them here. You know, like I’m a jouranlist of my own making or something. I’m actually interviewing my friend Jen this very day about her journey with breast cancer, starting in her early twenties. She’s absolutely beautiful and a complete rock star and I can’t wait for you to meet her. I want to call this series something but […]


Chubby Bunnies

April 14, 2010

Say ‘chubby bunnies‘ I SAID, say ‘chubby bunnies‘ Disclaimer: No one was traumatized while squished cheeks were being coaxed to spill their chubby bunnies. There were no tears. There was no pain, no fits. Except for fits of the giggles. And then he said, I’m not just your average boy, Mommy. He’s not, you know. I haven’t met an average boy yet,especially mine. ~~~~~ I’ve been trying to write a post for a few days now. It’s a Very Important Post. Or something. Actually, I have about five posts working, saved as drafts, just a-sittin‘ there a-wishin‘ they were fishin‘. Or… a-finished. What? I don’t have any idea what that meant, but now here I am writing this nonsensical post off the top of my head instead of those other ones. It seems that any time I sit down to spend some time on the world wide web these days, something comes up. […]



March 29, 2010

“Remember, we all stumble, every one of us. That’s why it’s a comfort to go hand-in-hand.”{Emily Kimbrough} Motherhood has shown me how little I know about much of anything. It started right away. I thought I would know exactly what to do {pffft}, but I second-guessed everything. So much of the time, this unknowledge loomed over me, past and present and future. I knew instantly that I desperately wanted control of everything and I had control of nothing. It was terrifying. To fiercely want to protect while feeling so helpless. Sometimes it feels like all I’ve done since we had our boys is stand in one place trying to figure things out. Thinking about how to do right by them or fix this or that while all the clashing thoughts bounce around my head and heart. Most often, by the time I work through the mess and come up the best possible response, […]


Thursday~December 17, 2009 Miles did our Christmas decorating this year. I believe he has a gift. All I had to do was sit at the table and watch. These are all of our decorations, you know, since we’re moving.I’m cool with that.All that really matters is that proud little grin anyway. ~~~~~ Not only is Miles helpful, he’s also hilarious. Just the other day he said,Daddy, your loud talking is crazing me out. Go ahead and steal the phrase crazing me out. You’re welcome. ~~~~~ Head on over to You Capture at I Should Be Folding Laundry for more Decor photos. ~~~~~P.S. Thank you all so much for your comments on my last post. That was the kind of post I hesitate to publish in all my fear and insecurity, all worried that I won’t be understood. So honestly, I was relieved and humbled and simply blown away by your encouraging comments. You […]


The Nanosecond

November 26, 2009

Thursday~November 26, 2009 My friend Lindsey gave me a gift today by sharing this quote with me, “Gratitude is noticing the extraordinary in the ordinary. And then taking the nanosecond to feel it.” (K.K. Kaplan) (Oh, how I love that! Thank you, Lindsey!) Happy Thanksgiving!(Dear My Side of the Family,We miss you today!) Thank you for allowing me to pop up in your inbox and for reading my words, silly or serious. I appreciate you. ~Heather


Free writing with Miles

October 23, 2009

Friday~October 23, 2009 Below you will find a piece of writing penned by myself and my inspiring four year old, Miles. We took turns. I asked him to start the story and when he would pause, I would pick up from where he left off. Then he would pause and I would take a turn. Then he just ran with it all on his own, rattling off the story almost faster than I could type. So I give you… Spider Went Into Someone’s Hand(title by Miles)(Kristen, aren’t you glad I didn’t say ear?) (Miles begins the story)“There was a spider and everybody came and the spider went out. And then the mom came in and then the kid came in.”(Then it was my turn…you get the idea.)“The spider’s name was Frank. He was hairy. He was black. He ran away when everybody came in because he was afraid of their feet stepping on […]


Sunday~October 4, 2009All this time, you’ve been hearing about Asher’s noggin. Ever since we found out about that whole hydrocephalus thing it’s as if his only appearance here on the blog is all about water on the brain and shunts and all that. Poor guy. There’s more to him than hydrocephalus, of course. He’s doing so well. SO well. I mean, like, I-will-scream-at-you-every-time-you-tell-me-I-can’t-have-what-I-want-to-have kind of well, know what I mean? And if he doesn’t agree with his brother…uh huh, that deserves a punch or a scratch or a bite. He’s got The Feisty, that Asher. He’s got it. (I should seriously post video of it, he’s terrifying.) And it is SO hard to be mad at him. No, not because of his noggin, but because he’s Asher. He will completely fold his face into a frown and hunch his shoulders and then screeeeech his demands like some kind of crazed vulture. And that’s […]


Wednesday~September 9, 2009 All this time, I’ve titled posts “From the Mouth of Miles.” Now I get to add Asher. This is gonna be even more fun than before. Double the hilarity. Here goes: There is my absolutely delicious Miles. I asked him to have Asher help him with something and he said,“But my brother is NOT helpful, he’s MEANFUL!” ~~~~~~~~~~ He and Asher are on my bed, staring up at the ceiling and doing nothing but talking. Well actually, Miles is talking and Asher is saying, “uh huh” over and over. Miles says, “I asked God for a lot of brothers.” Then he adds, pointing up, “Look! Do you see them? All the brothers falling from the sky?” (OK, so I was a bit terrified while eavesdropping on this one…falling from the sky? NOW? Does this mean I’m pregnant with twins or sextuplets or something???? ALL boys??? NOW???…But I’m not…I don’t think.) […]


7 Quick Takes

July 3, 2009

Friday~July 3, 2009 1. I totally forgot to announce my favorite title(s) for the picture story on Wednesday. Whoops. So. Remember this picture? There were so many great responses, but I especially appreciated “Tales of a Former Superhero: All Washed Up” by Minnesota Mom, and “H2 oh!” by K from Range of Notion Thanks for playing along! 2. We’re heading to my hometown for the 4th. This was a last-minute decision so we have no plans, really. (That’s a hint to those of you who live there. Wanna hang out? Email me or facebook me or call me. I’d love to see you. Yes. You.) 3. Speaking of my hometown. Remember how I said we’ve decided (finally) to move there? Well, we still really want to go, but meeting with a realtor was pretty disappointing. We found out we’d most likely lose a good chunk of money on our house. I realize that’s […]


Give me a C!

June 16, 2009

Tuesday~ June 16, 2009The letter ‘C’ doesn’t really work on my laptop. Yeah. It took me a really long time to type that because I had to get that unworking letter xfxxxdxd….to work. See? It’s not working again. Sorry…bear with me, the key has popped off the keyboard and we an’t get it back on… Ryan and I are trying to put it bak on the keyboard. It’s not working…. …… ccccc… Oh look! CCCC… It’s working! He fixed it! (My husband can do anything.) (Except fly…he can’t fly.) The C key met it’s demise at the hands of my children. They had a whole lot of fun with the computer a couple of times when I made the mistake of leaving it unattended. There’s also white gooey stuff on the floor in my bedroom, a strange smell floating out of Miles’ closet, and a million small dark stains on the living room […]


Thursday~June 11, 2009 I’m sitting in a coffee shop by myself. That’s always good. I’m a bit bogged down, but light at the same time. Ryan and I have finally made the decision to put our house on the market. That means lots and lots of work, getting ready to sell and then packing up and moving if someone happens to buy our humble abode. (My insides just did flip flops, just so you know.) I’m feeling lighter at the same time because we’ve finally started moving forward with something we’ve been terribly indecisive about. Sometimes moving along in the unknown feels much better than not moving at all. We’re looking to move back to the area I grew up in, and we’re excited about this adventure. I’ve become a city girl only to an extent, and we love it here in so many ways, but we want to be near my family, […]


7 Quick Takes

June 5, 2009

Friday~June 5, 2009 1. I’ve been thinking about politics a lot lately, or how people handle their opinions about politics anyway. It’s not that this is entirely new, but I guess I’ve been a bit more focused on it than usual. I’ve even been tempted to do a post about what I’m thinking, which I never ever thought I would do. Lately there’s so much bumping around my head and heart on this topic, but…I don’t know. 2. Ryan and I are leaving, heading off to our dear friend Shannon’s wedding in Wisconsin tomorrow through Sunday. We are not bringing the small people. They’ll stay at home with Nanny and Bapa, and then Uncle K and his girl, D will take over. Yesterday, I said something to Uncle K about getting up at around 6 a.m. with Asher, and he just stared at me with a bit of a glazed over shocked kind […]


Thursday~ May 14, 2009 (that’s a carrot and some dip on his noggin) ~~~~~~~~~~ I’m tucking him in to bed (and sniffing his head, of course) and I say, “MMMM, you smell like outside.” And he reciprocates with, “MMMMM, you smell like backside.” ~~~~~~~~~~ After much nagging about many things, he turns to me and says, “I’m just a guy who likes to do stuff! GOOD HEAVENS!” ~~~~~~~~~~ Miles is currently more than obsessed with all things Superheroes and Star Wars. Because he’s only three, I try to talk to him about how I don’t think he’s quite ready for the “rude talk” and violence in many of the movies and shows he begs to watch. He’s pretty good at trying to convince me he’s ready though: “You know, Mom. God made Star Wars to fight evil. So it’s nice.” ~~~~~~~~~~ He’s running around playing and accidentally runs into me as he’s flying […]


Monday~April 27th, 2009 “Stop staring at me! You just keep staring and staring without saying anysing! STOP IT!” Those were the words from my three year old, being fired at me like bullets, a glare in his eyes. I stood there and thought about how right he was. I didn’t know what to say. I didn’t know what to do, so I was just staring him down, waiting for his tantrum to stop, hoping my eyes would make it stop. My words sure weren’t working, they were only making it worse. I said “You’re right. I don’t know why I’m staring. I don’t know what else to do.” Then I walked away, wondering if God was getting a good laugh right about then. After all, I once thought I had all the answers. I once thought my child would never do that. That is pretty funny. Lately more and more people have been […]