Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Being hot is like my winter. I want to stay inside and hide from the heat. Yesterday and today Eva and I have spent our first days inside all day since... the hospital (and maybe the few days after that too). It's meant being more creative with our time since we can't rely on the natural entertainment of trees, bushes, and friendly strangers.

Sometimes Eva watches me cook and I explain it to her. I keep telling her that she's going to grow up to be an amazing cook. This is what I think they call brainwashing because both Donovan and I hate cooking and secretly hope that Eva wants to take over, say, in three or four years? :) Sometimes we also Skype family and chat which is always fun.

What do you do on long days inside?

Thursday, September 23, 2010


I was needing to get out with Eva the other day so we walked to our local coffee shop and she fell asleep in the carrier, bonus! So I read some local news and enjoyed the "ooooh, look at that baaaaby!" comments from friendly folks. Then a great coincidence happened. A brand new mommy (5 day old baby in tow) and another new mommy walked around the corner together. They both said hi to me too and we all started chatting. Turns out new mommy, Sierra, was out for the first time and her dad was in town. And semi-new mommy, Heather, and her two and a half month old baby were on their way to an appointment, only 1.5 hours late! Being a mommy is hard sometimes. But they had just met each other moments before and then they bumped into me. Coincidence? I think not.

We exchanged emails and phone numbers and off Heather went. We decided we would meet another time to talk more. Then last week I emailed them all. We are getting together this morning at my favorite neighborhood coffee shop (yes!) and chatting about babies and such (double yes!). We even are considering doing a babysitting swap so we can all have free babysitting sometime. Score!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Have you ever sat with a colicky baby and felt powerless to help them? They cry uncontrollably and there is nothing you can do. Oh, it is so sad for all! Have you ever been stuck in traffic and wished and hoped the light would turn green? Me too!

Eva HATES the car.

I know, I know. You have visions of infants being lulled to sleep by the motor and parents gaily driving around town with a baby knocked out in the backseat. That is not so. I guess Eva is a social person. So the idea of riding in the backseat without a friendly face is her worst nightmare. And she will go on and on for 30 minutes at full scream power to let you know it.

Today this came to a head because I was stuck in construction traffic so the short jaunt from Berkeley to home took about 30 minutes. 30 minutes from my worst nightmare! Eva screamed the whole way.

At first things were quite calm and collected. I said things like, oh, I know, baby! I leaned back and touched her forehead. I tried rolling down the window for entertainment. Then I turned on some music to soothe her (or drown her out, I'm not sure). Then things got a bit more intense...

After 20 minutes of screaming I usually start sweating. The hormones that rush through your body when your infant is screaming in sadness/pain make you sweat and your heart race. People tell me it's a good thing to have these hormones, but my body says, EEEEKK, stop the screaming, now! I resorted to running orange lights, attempting to put something in her mouth to chew on (she's teething), tapping loudly on my steering wheeling, begging in a loud/mad voice for her to stop, and eventually plugging my ears and humming loudly.

So if you see a crazy mom in a minivan running lights, be kind. Or if you stop at a light and from the rearview mirror you can see the parent in the car behind you is going crazy, remember this blog post. It's a crazy, crazy experience.

Eva's now sleeping off the screaming tantrum. It feels all perfect and peaceful now. But in those moments, wow, I feel pretty crazy!

Hee Jung

Our friend Hee Jung came for a visit last weekend. It was SO fun. We went to an AMAZING Korean restaurant. I'm a bit scared because it was so good and so close to our house. I want to go there daily! It is such satisfying food. And the courses are so well planned out. I love it! When can we go again?!

We did some local things with Hee Jung nuna (a term I recently learned, meaning older sister). We went to Lake Merritt and took a stroll. We went to my favorite coffee shop and talked espresso. I love that Hee Jung knows about shot times and the effects of different brewing on overall taste. We had two rounds, I won't lie :) We also toured the Cal campus and walked around Tildon Regional Park, my favorite! It's so beautiful there! It sounds busy but it was somehow soul filling and relaxing just to be together and to talk and to really be heard. I have a special place in my heart for my colleagues from Fuller. Especially my soul friend, Hee Jung! Thanks for coming to visit me, I know it's a long drive!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

i think i'm falling in love...

Oakland has this amazing coastal air. The mornings are cool and the afternoons are bright and beautiful. Little old men, hipsters, and mommies alike gather in one of seven coffee shops within walking distance of our place to converse each morning, and yes, you can often get a pretty amazing breakfast at these places as well which is not as gross as it sounds to a Portlander. There are several hidden "sanctuary" spots although I will not name for both the person who reads my blog and is not in Oakland and to keep the local secret a ... secret! People are super friendly, especially when we go to the Rose Garden and see families in our neighborhood meeting and chatting. Plus we one of our neighbors is this great little home for the disabled and there is always plenty of activity there throughout the day with people saying HI or BYE as we stroll along. There are magical trees in our neighborhood. I don't know what they're called nor have I ever seen them in the Northwest, but they are stunning, and when the light comes through them it's a spiritual experience. And when I am really seeking quietness and a holy place I go to the Mountain View Cemetery for a stroll (it's like a giant park) and listen to the silence. I really needed some of this space to think when I was in grad school and ended up seeking therapy for a while only to find out that my brain was really overstimulated while living in LA and space was exactly what I needed to cure it. The space to just be. And imagine. And when I'm in that place I naturally pray. Which is funny because I wouldn't say that's always the easiest thing for me. I do miss my family so much. But I went to one of these quiet spots today. And when I came home I skyped with my parents-in-law. I think I might be falling in love. With Oakland!