I had an interesting encounter today at Souplantation.
I met some friends for lunch and towards the end of the meal Declan decided he was done and began to fling his body around and yell.
You know, typical tantrum nonsense.
I decided to pick him up to try and defuse the situation before he went full blown wrecking ball on the place.
So as I stood there calming my spawn a middle aged man who was dining near us with his co-workers approached me.
HIM: “You know, I just had to come over and tell you… My wife used to run a daycare and every time she would give those kids ice cream they would just go crazy!”
ME: “I actually didn’t give him any ice cream…”
HIM: (Now looking and pointing at my friends) “Who gave him ice cream then? Which one of you did it?!
ME: “It was chocolate mousse.”
HIM: “Well I’m telling ya, that kid was already wild but then you gave him all that sugar and he just went spew! (Doing a douchy, point to the ceiling gesture). Good luck with him.
I was so baffled by what just happened that I didn’t say another word.
I could have told him that the chocolate mousse I just fed my son was sugar-free and that I only gave him a few bites.
I could have told him that it isn’t something I do every day and that I don’t see the harm in letting my son have sweets every once and a while.
I could have told him to mind his own fucking business.
But instead I just smiled and turned to my friends.
As we walked to the parking lot I laughed and said,
The thing is, I don’t understand this world we live in where people feel like they just need to tell you how to parent.
Why does a stranger feel obligated to inform me that he feels his wife and I are raising sugar-high youths?
I actually thought he may be coming over to compliment me on not giving in to my son’s tantrum or to tell me that this too shall pass.
So to hear him come at me like I’m a bad mom for letting my kid have three bites of chocolate mousse really bothered me.
It’s hard enough to be a mom when you’re constantly judging yourself and second guessing your choices.
We don’t need bystanders pointing out what they consider to be a parenting flaw too.
So basically what I’m saying is:
Because ain’t nobody got time for dat.
I’m sorry for all of the sappy love posts recently.
I promise you that tomorrow your regularly scheduled blog posts about awkward situations and child tantrums will return.
But today is my three-year wedding anniversary so you will have to bear through one more short but sweet post.
It may seem like overkill to some and maybe you think I’m trying to compensate for a voided, unhappy marriage.
The truth of the matter is, I just thought it would be nice to shower each other with love this week.
When you have a kid it’s really easy to let the exhaustion take ahold of your life.
You may still say I love you every night and follow it up with a kiss, but sometimes you forget to show each other that love.
I for one always forget that I can hold my husband’s hand because I’ve grown so used to having Declan in my arms whenever we go somewhere.
Hand holding may seem small but that physical connection has so many powerful properties to it.
We live in a society where we are told that showing public displays of affection is annoying and means there is something wrong.
That people who love outwardly are actually broken and you should be counting down the days until their marriage is over.
But I challenge that mindset daily.
My Facebook feed is flooded with depressing videos, statuses, and links.
People are quick to share their woes but think it’s self-righteous if they share their joys and I just don’t agree with that.
I wish my feed was filled with more declarations of love.
More success stories.
So Happy Anniversary my love!
I feel like I’ve known you my entire life and I thank God every single day for you.
May we always laugh at bad puns, cry at things involving sweet little children, and scream at awful refs together.
You are my favorite and I can’t wait to spend some alone time wine tasting up at the cabin this weekend.
I could say a million things about this post but instead I will let my husband’s words do the talking.
As promised yesterday, here is Derek’s version of our love story!
The True Story
Andrea did a phenomenal job describing her story through her eyes,
But let me make some things clear through my interpretation.
The truth of the matter is I was far and away from wanting anything serious.
I had just been through one 8 months prior that ended on a bad note and had NO intentions of finding love anytime soon. I was 21 and the world was my playground.
I had just traveled through Europe for 45 days, went through several small “relationships”,
But anytime they started to get serious…I simply moved on without looking back.
I actually got my courage to try online dating through my mom after I told her I was tired of dating the same type of girls over and over.
My mom had just met her now husband and love of her life on Myspace.
(Young pups won’t get that reference)
But she had encouraged me to reach out of my bubble of ex-girlfriends/flings/the greek system and try online dating to meet new and exciting people.
My mom was wrong three times before I saw a picture what I can only describe as a moment when your heart stops and time follows.
I can remember every pixel in that picture still today. Hands perched up holding her dimpled cheeks with a beautiful smile that can brighten any room.
This is picture he is referring to :)
My thoughts were very similar to hers “What is she doing on here?”
Followed by “Yep I’m gonna get that.”
(not in the sexual way…Terri and Karl turn away….soooo in the sexual way)
I did make the first move by messaging her.
I remember I didn’t want to be a creeper so I started subtle.
The next day when she replied I was in shock and got straight to starting conversation.
We then traded AIM’s to which I was beyond nervous about as my douchebag roommate/best friend had made my screen name for me as an inside joke from class:
But since she didn’t run away from me then I suppose my humor had her tangled in my web.
She did ask me if we were going to meet after ONLY a week of chatting.
Again I was in no rush.
I actually had gone on a few dates where the ogres were not the girls in the pictures.
BUT I ASKED HER OUT!!!
I then admittedly got a little creeper by saying we could go from my place to the restaurant (Yardhouse).
In my defense it was sooo close to my place and I wanted to be a gentleman by driving us.
She also refused for me to pick her up.
(I get that now as a parent)
I got to YardHouse early as I seem to do with anything.
She however was NOT 5 minutes late. It was closer to 19 minutes.
The best part is she didn’t tell me “Hey im running late”.
No I had to go through the blind date panic of possibly being stood up and I had to text her!
Now mind you she said she had another date planned out that night…that’s fair.
Because I had a key word setup for my friends to text me I’m late for our “thing”.
I can remember her walking up to me as if it was yesterday.
Pure joy is really all I can describe it as.
She actually looked like her pictures and again her smile brightened my heart.
I can tell you I knew this girl was the one the moment we sat down and she asked for the beer menu.
Not the daiquiri or margarita menu.
No no, the beer menu.
But then things took an immediate change when she said:
“I know you’re going to think I’m a typical girl, but I just really love salads.”
From that moment on conversation flowed with so much ease it was as if I had known her my whole life.
When the bill came for $72.00 without tip and she saw I was a generous tipper that’s when she agreed to go somewhere else.
(FYI she reached for her wallet…if she hadn’t I would “went” to the restroom”…JK)
I believe she has said several times:
“The way you treated our server I knew you were a good man.”
We then made plans to head to my favorite beer bar.
Again as she said conversation was flowing and we were getting closer and closer.
I didn’t want the night to end, but couldn’t take her to the fraternity house to party either.
So while I went in the restroom I texted my friends to meet at a local hole in the wall.
Andrea text that loser mama’s boy who lived in his parent’s basement that she couldn’t make it.
(Sorry if anyone lives in their parent’s basement is reading this. You’re not a loser you’re a winner!)
I told her I had plans at this bar and my friends were there so why not invite her friend.
We got to the local watering hole and friends started becoming friends.
She brought the boys a pitcher of beer and they made it clear she couldn’t leave my side.
I watched this girl take two shots of tequila from a stranger at the bar, give him a high five, say thank you, and leave him wondering what just happened.
We went back to my place (creeper to start not creeper to end?)
We watched Family Guy for hours while her friend passed out on the couch and we both nearly fell asleep in the comfort of each other’s presence.
After 12 straight hours of what I would now describe as recovering from the scars of love I walked her to her car.
Her friend lingered next to us until Andrea gave her the look to WALK AWAY.
And I kissed her.
It was by far the best last first kiss I could ever imagine.
We went on 3 more dates in a 7 day span.
But Andrea was right.
We were madly in love and head over heels for one another, I was simply terrified.
How could I of been so adamant to not fall in love and then SHE shows up?
She rattled everything I had worked so long for.
She instantly changed everything I had wanted (or so I thought I wanted).
I don’t believe I fell in love at first sight.
I don’t believe I was falling for her.
And I refuse to believe that it was coincidence.
Because plain and simple there is no explanation of how this magic appeared.
I can only believe it was Destiny.
The most powerful thing on earth brought us together and there was no process of love.
She was my love.
From the day the Dr. slapped our butts
We were meant to love one another.
We were meant to simply
Be in love.
Words cannot describe it Andrea.
Pages have been written and fallen short time and time again.
Our Love Story simply is Happily Ever After.
And Far Longer.
I started this blog three months after I got married and while I have made it no stranger that I love my husband I realize that I have never told our story before.
So in honor of our anniversary on Thursday Derek and I are doing a little His & Hers love story telling.
A love story is composed of two sides after all.
Her story and his story make our story.
So without further ado, here is my love tale.
The truth of the matter is, I was hurting.
I had just found out my boyfriend at the time was cheating on me through online dating websites and so I did what any grieving lady would do:
I joined one myself called okcupid.com.
My best friend convinced me that it would help me feel better having random guys tell me I was pretty all day long and she was right.
Never-mind the fact that most of them were super-into close-up magic and bore a striking resemblance to Mr. Bean.
It helped me transition from ugly crying through every Coldplay song on the radio to a sassy Taylor Swift song so I was grateful.
I went on a few dates with a few different guys but they weren’t anything to brag about.
And then one day I had a message in my inbox from Derek.
My very first thought was,
“This guy is way too hot to be messaging me!”
His message was generic enough.
Hi, I’m Derek. What school are you planning on transferring to?
(Something along those lines).
As it turns out, my original plan was to go to CSULB which is where he was currently enrolled.
So once he heard that our conversation started rolling.
He gave me his number and I specifically remember responding similar to as follows:
“I don’t call guys but you’re welcome to call me (insert cell number here).”
He didn’t call but the next day I had a new message online from him.
“Hey, I’m not trying to be a creeper or anything but did you really give me the wrong number? I tried to call you and it didn’t work.”
Anyone who knows Derek personally can attest to the fact that normally if a girl had blown him off like that he would have just moved on, so to this day it is surprising to me that he even messaged me after the “wrong number” incident.
But the truth of the matter was, I didn’t give him the wrong number.
He put it in his phone wrong.
Once that was cleared up we began texting back and fourth.
After about a week or so of talking he still hadn’t asked me on a date and I decided I didn’t want to waste my time getting to know him online if he never actually wanted to meet in person.
So I was the one to initiate our first date.
I ever so bluntly said, “Are we ever going to meet or what?” and from their Derek took the reigns.
He wanted to meet the following Saturday but I was actually supposed to go to an ex-flings wedding that day.
I decided to politely decline the wedding invite and meet Derek instead.
Turns out that another guy I had gone on a few dates with wanted to see me that night too.
He invited my girlfriend and I to a club with bottle service and all of that good stuff.
I figured I could meet Derek at 5:00 pm for dinner and then pick up my friend after the date and head on out to Hollywood for some clubbing.
Yes, I technically scheduled two dates in one night.
No, I still have not lived that one down.
So Derek and I decided to meet at the Yardhouse in Long Beach.
I didn’t know why, but I was really nervous.
I even texted my best friend about it and we laughed because I hadn’t been nervous on any of the other dates.
There was construction on the freeway and my directions had me all over the place so I was running late.
That’s when Derek called.
“Are you seriously standing me up?!”
In my defense, I was only about 5 minutes behind but I let him know that I was almost there.
I walked inside eagerly and he came right up to me and gave me a hug.
I don’t know how to describe it, but the second he touched me I just felt like I was home.
We talked and laughed like we had known each other for years and I remember he looked so handsome under the moonlit patio.
When the bill came the reality that our date was about to be over set in.
We had already told one another that we had plans to meet up with our friends after the date so that was that.
Only it wasn’t.
Derek asked me if I wanted to go grab a beer or ice cream with him and I was elated.
So we headed on over to a bar on second street together.
Derek taught me how to play shuffleboard and still not wanting the date to end, asked me if I wanted to come to meet up with his friends with him.
I canceled my date and told my girlfriend Alwyn to get her butt out to Long Beach to meet up with us.
We ended up at a bar with three of Derek’s best friends and my best friend.
On our first date.
I bought the boys a pitcher (which is when they decided I was a keeper) and we all hung out like we had done it a thousand times before.
Alwyn and I went back to Derek’s apartment afterwards to sober up before driving home.
I found myself cuddled on the couch next to a man I had just met and I never felt more comfortable in my life.
12 hours after it started our first date finally came to a close with a kiss.
I was positive I had just met the love of my life.
Now I just had to convince him that I was his.
Lucky for me, he felt the same way and we went on three more dates that week.
Neither of us were sure that we were ready to be in another serious relationship but both of us were certain that it was worth the risk.
So we dove in head first.
We tore down each other’s walls, allowed ourselves to have the love we felt we deserved in life, and the rest is history.
I never believed that you could love someone you just met until that November night.
And I still don’t know how to describe it.
But I knew I had just met my soulmate.
And when I look back I think,
“Okay, cupid. I get it.”
As promised on Facebook and Instagram, here I am ready to tell you all about my experience last Friday.
I was approached by my friend Kathryn about being on The Doctors on Wednesday of last week.
She said they were looking for a fun energetic mom to cook with Dr. Travis and asked if I would be able to find a babysitter for D to come and do it.
While it sounded fun and I was honored she would even think of me I was also really nervous.
I’m no stranger to the lime light.
I was in show choir, sang in front of large crowds in stage in Hollywood, was the president of my high school drama club, and have been in several plays and competitions.
Still, that was over 6 six years ago.
A faint memory of a life I once lived.
And this was different.
See, all other times that I had been on stage in my life I was playing a role.
Even while singing you are performing.
I have never been in front of an audience before just being me.
The idea of that made me really uncomfortable.
What if they don’t like me?
What if I do something lame?
What if I fall off the stage?
Fear crept into my mind as I over-analyzed all possible outcomes.
And then I just gave it to God.
For whatever reason, Kathryn asked me out of all the people in the world and I like to believe there was a reason for that even greater than the one she came up with.
So I said yes!
Friday I made my way to Paramount Pictures and I almost threw up in the car because I was so nervous.
But then a girl named Olivia came and picked me up in a golf cart to take me over to the studio.
We chatted and I instantly felt more calm.
Next, I was introduced to a smorgasbord of wonderfully kind people and before I knew it I was cool as a cucumber.
Kathryn even took time out of her crazy hectic day to not only come down and visit me but later watch the segment and take pictures for me.
It was such a blast getting to meet Dr. Rachel and Dr. Travis!
I was quirky and nerdy and totally myself but I got nothing but positive feedback from it and I am SO glad I faced this fear.
I originally debated on whether or not I wanted to tell people when it aired but then I realized that would be me only half facing this fear instead of fully.
So if you want to watch me be awkward on television the episode of The Doctors (CBS) airs on October 21st.
Don’t forget to enter the contest by facing your own fears too.
I’m giving away this beautiful necklace to one lucky winner along with another secret prize that I will reveal next week!
You can engrave pretty much anything that fits on it.
Your name, wedding date, kid’s birthday, etc.
I’m probably going to buy myself one too as a congrats to myself for facing these fears because it’s so cute!
Looking forward to seeing your posts this Friday!
Two years ago I received a phone call that would forever change me.
I was elated to see that my friend Amanda had given birth to her gorgeous daughter Arya but was confused as to why I had a missed call and text message from a woman who had just squeezed a babe out of her who-haw.
It was in a returned phone call that the Jonssons bonded their family to mine for life.
(That’s right, you guys are stuck with me!)
Their little girl would hold the name Arya Kinlie, in remembrance of the daughter we lost.
(You can read more about it here.)
I cried when I read Amanda’s sweet recap of her daughter’s birth story today.
(Read it here).
Arya is a firecracker.
Her blue eyes and red hair defying all genetic odds.
She marches to the beat of her own drum and she knows what she wants.
Her smile is infectious and her sense of style is unmatched.
And every time I see her do something new my heart is filled with so much joy.
Amanda and Tyler didn’t have to understand what happened to Derek and I.
They didn’t have to bless us by honoring our daughter.
But they did.
And when I see Arya Kinlie I am constantly reminded of just how good God is.
She takes a little piece of my baby with her everywhere she goes.
And that is so very special.
Happiest Birthday sweet girl.
I love you more than you will ever know.
And because I can’t hog this entire post here’s Declan!
I just farted.
Sorry, let’s try that again.
I heard it’s your birthday so I got you this balloon.
I’m counting down the days until I can give you another leaf in person.
I know how much you loved the last one.
Enjoy your special day beautiful!
Fall is my favorite time of the year.
My birthday is the day before Halloween so I’ve pretty much had pumpkin spice laced blood since day one.
The leaves, the crisp air, I love it all.
I gladly trade in my bikini and sunburns every year for cozy sweaters and fireplaces.
But for some reason California seems to be screaming at me Regina George style:
Quit trying to make fall happen.
And I’m over here pleading to fall like,
Doesn’t California know that fall and winter are the only times of the year that vampires like myself get to come out of hibernation?
Why is the Golden State robbing me of the only time that it is socially acceptable to be as pale as I am?
Haven’t I burned enough this year?!
I feel so betrayed.
I don’t even know you anymore!
It was 90 degrees when I took that photo by the way.
Since I can’t make one in my kitchen because it’s so freaking hot I guess I will have to go throw one on the concrete and let the sun toast the bread and melt the cheese.
But seriously, I hope this heat wave ends like yesterday.
I’ve got some apple picking and pumpkin patch perusing to do next weekend and I’d prefer to not be clad in flip flops, shorts, and sweat.
In other news, I’ve decided to unveil part of he prize for my Fearless Friday Giveaway because I want to motivate you guys to participate.
So be sure to check in tomorrow on Facebook and Instagram to see what it is!
Tell me, what scares you?
(Other than this picture of me of course).
My list is pretty extensive and ranges from things like spiders all the way to cars pulled over on my street that I don’t recognize.
Because obviously that means they are here to murder me.
While I don’t mean to be a chickety chick I find myself often saying the phrase,
“HELL NO, THAT’S SCARY AS SHIT!”
So I’ve decided to step outside of my comfort zone this month and I’m asking all of you to join me!
Each Friday of this month let’s go out there and do something that scares us.
If you’re afraid of heights, go ride a roller coaster.
If you get nervous in social settings, put yourself out there and talk to someone new.
Try the mystery meat, hold a lizard, do whatever it is that is outside of that comfortable bubble you’ve been living in.
Some famous dude that you may or may not have heard of before named Franklin D. Roosevelt said:
“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”
Now, I’m guessing Roosevelt was never knee-deep in a bucket of tarantulas but I digress.
The point is that on the other side of our fears lies power.
And power over our fears is gained by facing them.
So tonight I’m going to let Derek choose any scary movie he’d like for us to watch.
I avoid scary movies like the black plague and instilled a clause in our marriage that states I will only watch two in a year with him.
I’m getting anxiety just thinking about it, especially since I know he’s going to pick a possession movie.
I am terrified of possession movies.
But tonight I’m going to face that frightening silver screen.
I will be posting a picture on my Instagram each week of me facing a fear so be sure to follow along.
And to participate, post your own conquering photos using the hashtag #fearlessfriday for a chance to win a fun prize!
(It’s a surprise).
Be sure to tag me (@lendmeyourkite) so that I can see your posts!
I will be choosing one winner at the end of Halloween night.
So get to conquering my friends!
I may be inching up to my 27th birthday, but this girl acts like she is 72 sometimes.
It’s awkward, and funny, and somehow my hips hurt just thinking about it.
But at least I’m not alone!
Aging right along with me at warped speed is my good old P.I.C. Derek.
When we realized the statement “Gosh, we’re old!” comes out of our mouths daily we decided to document all of the crap that makes us say that in the first place.
Because let’s face it:
The first thing to go is the memory.
So grab a glass of prune juice, strap on your Depends , and join me while I share with you our list of “10 old people things” we have caught ourselves saying.
(These are all direct quotes out of our mouths)
1. “Why aren’t those kids in school? Hooligans! Hooligans I tell you!”
2. “The ice cream truck goes by way too fast.”
3. “Back in my day Nintendo was a luxury.”
4. “Slow down, this is a residential!”
5. “It’s already 11 o’clock. When is their damn party going to end?!”
6. “I really need to find a good farmer’s market… for produce.”
7. “Why can’t people invest in a drip line system? For crying out loud we are in a water crisis here!”
8. “Damn neighbors always trying to talk to us when we’re on walks.”
9. “That crown molding though…”
10. “Wanna get crazy and grab a Redbox tonight?”
Happy hump day!
I’m off to yell at some kids to get off my lawn and spoon feed myself some Jello.
I always knew this day would come.
What I didn’t know, was how mournful it would be.
I can still recall the first time we met.
June 27, 2013 just before 7:00 am.
Declan was finally in my arms after a grueling 8+ hours without him and he was hungry, as babies tend to be.
You were in the limelight, ready to take the stage.
But we had no way of rehearsing beforehand and boy did it show.
It was painful, Declan was frustrated, and I was already sure that I was failing as a mother less than 24 hours after my son was born.
But I refused to give up on you.
I went to support groups to learn how to bond with you properly.
I grit my teeth through the pain so that together we could feed my baby.
We went through two bouts of Mastitis together, powered through raw nipples, and countless tears of frustration, pain, and sorrow.
Pretty soon the three of us were one.
Because of you I was able to comfort Declan through the hardest moments of the first year of his life.
You made his teething bearable.
You soothed him when he was upset.
You nourished him and rocked him to sleep.
And while you were ultimately a lifeline for Declan, you were a blanket of warmth for me as well.
For every moment I agonized over you there were three more moments of celebration.
My heart felt as though it would burst as my tiny human locked eyes with me.
The gratitude, love, and joy on his face were gifts given to me by you.
Letting go of a connection of this magnitude feels like walking away from your purpose in life.
Who am I without you to my son?
Will he understand why you had to go?
We’ve spent his entire life together.
And I’m going to miss you.
I knew this day would come.
But as he took his last sip I mourned you.
This new chapter had to start but I will never forget all you have done for me and my son.
Goodbye dear friend, and thank you for everything.