Monthly Archives: March 2009

My Lent: Part Three

glamour MaliaI was expecting something a little more profound.

There’s more to this Lent observance than just not doing something for 40 days. I have a lot to learn. I’ll confess that this has been more of an exercise in self-control for me rather than an exercise in faith.

But perhaps the two are linked? I hope so. I’d really like to come away from this experience with something more than…the knowledge of that I stuck to my vow. And perhaps that in and of itself is profound?

I do hope so.

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Here Comes The Sun

glamour MaliaA couple of weeks ago Spring started to make an appearance around here.  Daffodils and tulips bloomed seemingly overnight. The Bradford Pears and Cherry Trees and Saucer Magnolias showed all their floral glory. And the sun, the sun came out on a more regular and glorious basis.

Now, it’s really not like flipping on a light switch in your brain. There’s a reason I referred to the darkness as my friend and it really wasn’t to use a creative post title. After awhile, depression becomes apart of you and you define yourself by it. You don’t want to be depressed. You don’t like being depressed. However, you come to rely on it, to expect it and to even nurture it in some ways.

So when I started to feel the darkness lift and my spirits improve, I panicked a little bit. Could I really be happy again? Was it just a fluke? How would I define myself now without the darkness the cloaked around me?

Little by little, my mood improved, my outlook brightened and my definition of myself turned sunny and bright. So much so, that even the intermittent storms and gray days we’ve had have been unable to deter me.

I stopped at Panera the other day to get some breakfast. As I left, the sun had broken through the clouds and was glinting off the wet pavement. The clouds were a bright white from the relection. I turned my face to the sun and smiled, a giggle inexplicably burst from my lips.

I was happy again.

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Channeling Donald Rumsfeld

rumsfelddeskI’ve been displaced from my desk. The desk holds our desktop PC but I was also keeping my laptop on it. But now, DB must use the PC to do his work and we both can’t sit at the desk. At first I just sat at the dining room table and occassionally took  my laptop into the living room. But those were just temporary spaces. Then one day I sat the laptop down on the buffet in the dining room and it occurred to me that that would be a great space for me to work. The buffet’s height is at my waist, so using a chair is out. Then I remembered reading about how Donald Rumsfeld used a standing desk to do his work. And well, if he can do it, then so can I!

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Darkness, My Old Friend

glamour MaliaI’m no stranger to the rain. There have been some significant periods of depression in my life. Most of them have been within the past eight to nine years. The first came after JBelle was born. PPD is really a most heinous thing. Unfortunately for us, the diagnosis came so late that by then it was just full on depression. Some counseling and some medication did wonders.

There was another significant depression for me in 2003. Then after GMan was born and I got through that round of PPD (with the aid of medication), I thought I was home free. But then bouts of it kept creeping back into my life. It finally hit me, recently, that my struggles were occurring in the winter time. I have friends and acquaintances who are profoundly affected by S.A.D. – Seasonal Affective Disorder and I remember studying it in college. However, I never thought I would be affected by it.

I’ve always enjoyed the winter season. It’s not so much that I like being cold but I like the things that go with it: hot chocolate, warm sweaters and blankets, chili, the excuse to stay in and be cozy, Christmas, peppermint hot chocolate, New Year’s, my birthday, have I mentioned hot chocolate? How could I ever be depressed by winter?

Yet it seems that that is just what has happened.

This past winter was especially hard. There were several reasons for it and even though I knew the train of thought was useless, I couldn’t seem to help myself. Over and over again, “I have no reason to feel this way. I’m blessed beyond measure. What’s wrong with me? I shouldn’t feel this way.  There are people who have real reasons to feel sad and depressed. Reasons to cry. Reasons to wish they could stay in bed all day long and hide from the world.”

The one thing I do know about depression is that it’s not about how things should be. Brain chemistry and the injustices of life don’t always have anything to do with each other. Those thoughts really do nothing to bolster me, if anything, it just makes it all worse.

The past several weeks have been dark ones. My days were filled with a dense fog of sadness, anger and confusion. Everything was affected by it, most especially my sleep. Even though every morning I longed to stay in bed, I would deliberately stay up entirely too late at night not wanting to go to bed because that would just bring on the next fog filled day that much faster. Such a vicious cycle.

And I avoided as much socialness as I could. That’s another vicious cycle. And I didn’t write much here because I just didn’t have anything that I truly wanted to say.

to be continued…

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Craziest Woman on the Internet Lives Here

Ultimate Blog Party 2009
It all started with an innocent little e-mail from Alli. 5 Minutes for Mom and One2One Network wanted to have to real life blogger parties to go with the Ultimate Blog Party going on all this week. Alli simply needed someone to host the party. I love having people over even if I do make myself (and my family) crazy with all the prep work I do beforehand. There was something about a singer coming to sing for us. How nice, I thought, so I quickly responded that I would be the hostess with the mostess.

Crikey. Oi. Loco.

I count the evening as a success because 1) we did live stream Leslie’s performance even if it wasn’t the way we were “supposed to” (I now understand why people are not so fond of Vista) and 2) everyone genuinely seemed to have a good time.

I wasn’t exactly the most gracious of hostesses. I made the guests set-up the food, open wine bottles, find ice on their own, help my daughter with her homework, get my son a drink, serve my kids cake, find the bathroom on their own and scrounge for serving utensils. That’s because I was busy playing technical director for the live streaming video and having a well concealed* but nonetheless huge nervous breakdown!

The following are the brave women who came to my house and in spite of my questionable mental state managed to have a great time:

Busy Mom

Shauna

Jordana

Jessie

Meredith

Jessica

Amy

Carrie

Amy

Lotus

If you are so inclined, go show them some bloggy love and check out each of their sites!

lesliemills

Many thanks to Leslie Mills and Chris for performing for us! Y’all were such good sports about our most unprofessional set-up and technical snafus. And thank you for taking my son’s questions and neurosis in stride! Everyone went home with a copy of Leslie’s CD: Everlasting Road. If you leave a comment, you’ll be entered to win a copy of it, too! (Leave comment by Saturday, March 28, winner will be announced Sunday, March 29. You must use a valid e-mail to comment so that I can contact you. I can only ship to U.S. addresses.)

Thank you to Barbara Jones of One2One Network for being on Skype with us the whole evening, walking us through the process and for providing for our party! Barbara is hosting the 3rd IRL UBP party tomorrow night in NYC!

Thank you to 5 Minutes for Mom for the Ultimate Blog Party and allowing us to represent you last night!

Finally, thanks to Alli for keeping it together and making sure the guests were taken care of! You can include me in your crazy schemes anytime!

You can view Leslie’s performance and interview and the blog interview here. Pictures from the part on Flickr.

*at least, I think it was well concealed!

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Filed under by Malia, I blog they blog wouldn't you like to be a blogger too?, life as a domestic goddess, link love, Nashville life

Let’s Party!

Ultimate Blog Party 2009

Here we go! Welcome 5 Minutes For Mom Ultimate Blog Party guests! I’m Malia, your co-hostess with the mostess along with Alli. TONIGHT we will be hostessing one of the three IRL (in real life) UBP (ultimate blog parties) with special musical guest Leslie Mills! We are tremendously excited about this and are hoping & praying that everything goes off without a hitch! Last night, the beautiful Heather of The Spohrs Are Multiplying hosted the California IRL UBP with Chris Mann! It was a riot! That Chris sure knows how to make the ladies swoon. We’ll be coming at you live at 8 pm CDT, click on this link to get to the live streaming video of the par-tay!

In addition to getting myself mixed up in crazy schemes like hosting blog parties, I blog here on a semi-regular basis about all sort of various and sundry things. There’s a lot about my kids, JBelle – 8 and GMan – 4. There are occassional recipes for Mouthwatering Mondays hosted by the fabulous Rachel. But mostly it’s just my random musings on life. (You’ll also see rare but brilliant posts from my amazing husband, DB!) And I am also the editor for the Wedded Bliss channel of BlissfullyDomestic.com. And I just did my first ever guest post at WifeandMomof3! And I Twitter. Busy much, Malia? Just a bit!

Here’s what’s on my mind today. Clutter. There is too much clutter in our house. I know this but I’ve been made very much aware of it the past few days as I’ve attempted to get my home ready to host a party. We’re drowning in too much stuff! I would love to just have a Goodwill or Salvation Army truck back up to my door so I could chuck all the stuff we don’t use anymore into it and have them take it all away. As it is, I’ll have to box it up and take it over there myself but either way, something needs to be done about this!

I’m excited about meeting new people through this Ultimate Blog Party experience! I’m so glad you took the time to stop by, check out my humble blog and say hi! I wish I had something exciting like a giveaway but I’m not that cool…yet. It could happen, right?

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Life Lessons from Malia: Always get the postal insurance

glamour MaliaRemember the laptop bag saga? Remember how I sent back the first one to get a refund because I didn’t much care for it? Well, guess what? I never got the refund and here’s why:

img_2650_alt

That invoice/return slip was inside the box, not outside. The only way that invoice/return slip could have been “found loose” was for it to be taken out of the box and why would it be taken out of the box before it reached it destination? Thievery! Yes dear readers, apparently my rejected laptop bag was stolen in transit.

And how could this have turned out to have been merely a minor annoyance and not an expensive life lesson? Insurance! Delivery confirmation! Something other than:

Me to friendly neighborhood postal employee – “I need to send this as economically* as possible.”

It still cost me $10 to send the bag back but now I’m out $70 because I didn’t tack on a little extra to make sure I did, in fact, get that refund. The moral of this story, frugality has it’s place but not when trying to return an expensive item for a refund. Learn from my mistake, dear ones, and always spring for the postal insurance! I know I will next time.

*cheaply

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