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.


Filed under by Malia, religion

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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Filed under by Malia

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!


Filed under by Malia, life as a domestic goddess, random

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…


Filed under by Malia

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










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


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!


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 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?


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

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:


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.


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Filed under by Malia, life as a domestic goddess

The Culture of Indignation

glamour MaliaThere’s a attitude that has been making it’s way through the blogging community that sort of goes something like this, “Don’t piss me off because I’m a blogger and I’ll let the whole world know just how awful you are if you do.” What seemingly started out as a way to inform others about companies who may or may not be on the up and up or to find out if others have had similar experiences with a company has become a daily exercise in the “airing of the grievances”. And it’s not just about restaurants, retailers, hospitals, car dealerships, websites and the like anymore, these kinds of posts are also targeting individuals.

As bloggers, we have embraced a false sense of power and security. I have to wonder just how many of us would actually say to anyone’s face what we dare say from behind our computer screens. Insults and meaness flow from our fingertips and across the web. It’s the grown-up’s version of slam books and note passing that was prevelent in junior high and high school. I have witnessed extreme pettiness and ugliness on the Internet in the name being vigilant and transparent.

What has happened to us? Part of me thinks that the jerks on the Internet are also jerks in real life, I mean, how could they not be right? But another part of me wonders if the jerks, at least some of them, are just caught up in the culture of indignation that has spread like wild fire across the Internet. The barista at Starbucks gets your order wrong? Shout it from the rooftops of Twitter! Bad customer service from a local company? Drag their name through the mud on your blog! Get your feelings hurt or have a disagreement with another blogger? Sick all your online friends on them to show just how “powerful” you are!

People are not perfect. Company’s make mistakes. Sometimes they make big mistakes, sometimes someone just has a bad day. Do we really need to point it out every time it happens? And what about the times we dogpile on individuals and spew forth all sorts of vitriol just because we don’t agree on how they do things? How are we helping anyone by doing that? When will we realize just how badly it reflects on us when all we do is complain about how awful everyone else is?

I realize there is some irony in this post I write. I am, essentially, participating in this culture of indignation by criticizing it in this way. Yes, I’m making veiled references to recent and not so recent examples of this behavior. Do I get some absolution because I won’t link to it, maybe, maybe not. Life is not always sunshine and roses and bliss. I know that as well as anyone. I like to adhere to a practice of leaving things better than I found them, not a wake of destruction and loathing. But that’s just me.


Filed under by Malia, musings

My Lent: Part Two

glamour MaliaThree weeks. I’ve made it three weeks without eating (real)* ice cream or (real) cookies or brownies or donuts or muffins or cake or pie. I’ve  not had (real) coke, (real) sweet tea or used my favorite creamer in my coffee. I’ve also not had oatmeal because I eat it with brown sugar, or pancakes because I like them with real maple syrup. No peanut butter sandwiches because I make them with honey. No biscuits because I put jelly on them. Oh, and no tasty cocktails, wine or beer. Mmmm….beer.

If you had told me even in January that I would go 3 weeks without indulging my favorite sweets and treats and beverages, I would have thought you were off your rocker.

And I still have another 3+ weeks to go.

The last few days I have even found myself fantasizing about how I will break my Lenten fast. Seriously, I’m not even kidding. I had a good laugh with a friend earlier this evening who has given up caffeine. He suggested we go to Krispy Kreme Easter Sunday morning and celebrate with donuts and coffee. I’ll end up passed out from a sugar induced coma and he’ll be bouncing off the walls from the caffeine high!

And if anyone ever tells you that giving up sugar is easy and you won’t miss it, they are lying! Liar, liar pants on fire!! Fire…roasted marshmallows…s’mores….

It’s going to be a long 3+ weeks.

*(real) – denotes that I have had sugar-free replacements of these items. It’s not the same, not the same at all!

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Filed under by Malia, musings, religion

Come Party With Me

Ultimate Blog Party 2009

You know how someone says, “Hey, let’s do this really fun thing!” and you’re like, “Sure, that sounds great!” but truly you have no idea what you’ve just gotten yourself into? Yeah…this is kinda like that.

This all started with a simple little e-mail from my girl Alli and the next thing I know, I’m hosting local mom bloggers at my house next Monday and joining in on this virtual Ultimate Blog Party 2009. And like they say, the more the merrier! So, if you blog and if you’re a mom or I guess even a just a lady (sorry boys, this is girls swim only) won’t you join me and thousands of others while we party like only bloggers know how? Click here for everything you need to know about The Ultimate Blog Party 2009.

Come on, it’ll be fun and you’ll meet new bloggers and you could possibly even win some cool stuff. Nobody will barf on you, show up wearing the same dress or leave with your date because all this happens online! On your blog! And the blogs of other bloggers! There’s not even a cover charge, it’s simply BYOB (bring your own blog! – aren’t I the clever one?)

The Ultimate Blog Party 2009 runs from March 20 – 27. I can’t wait to see you there!


Filed under by Malia, I blog they blog wouldn't you like to be a blogger too?