All You Need is Love

I still can’t believe it – we celebrated my first pseudo Mother’s Day this year. 

As I said to my awesome girlfriend: It’s just not fair that Josh gets to hold a sweet baby on Father’s Day 2011, while I get a few swift kicks to the ribs and some heartburn to keep me up at night.  I hope this doesn’t foretell future Mother’s Days. 🙂

Everyone keeps asking when I’m going to get maternity photos taken.  Since I’m so into photography, I think they just assume that I’ll get the standard mama-to-be photos all tangled in a sheet, head thrown back, belly exposed.  But…no please!  For some reason, maternity has just never been something that floats my boat.  I think pregnant mamas are absolutely gorgeous, don’t get me wrong, they just don’t inspire me like the sweet babies they produce do. 

However, first thing this Sunday morning, on my almost first Mother’s Day, Josh convinced me to let him take a few pictures of me in the nursery.  And honestly?  I’m really glad he did 🙂 

I wasn’t dressed, my hair was all a ruckus from our evening out on Saturday night, but I look happy.  And pregnant.  And that’s how I want to remember this pregnancy.  Because although it’s had its highs (baby’s movin!!) and it’s lows (OMG opening my eyes makes me want to puke), it’s been an awesome ride so far, and I’m so thankful for that.


Dear little baby inside my tummy,

I’m a little concerned.  See, you’re currently at 30weeks, 2 days gestation – which means that you still have AT LEAST another 6 weeks of cooking to do – and I can tell you already want out.  You have wiggled, poked, kicked, punched, rolled, and stretched more in the past 3 days than I ever thought was possible for someone who only weighs in at around 3lbs.  Even now, as I sit at work and lean against my desk to type, you are pushing so hard that my body is being physically shoved away from my desk.

Don’t get me wrong – I absolutely LOVE to feel you move around.  It’s a constant reminder of the perfect little life growing inside me, and it makes me pause for a moment to dream about what you’ll be like when you finally arrive.  Since we don’t know if you’re a boy or a girl (though your daddy and I each have our own opinions on that), my thoughts lean more towards what you’re little (or big!) personality will be like.  I’m guessing that you’re going to be a bit of a firecracker. 

So thank you for the little hello’s during the day, and feel free to keep them up as often as you feel necessary.  Let’s just be clear – no coming out until week 36 please!



A few weeks ago we went up to the cabin with Josh’s family (minus one brother/wife/kiddo combo who were in PA with her family).  We had a total blast riding the go-carts and causing a ruckus like the big group of rednecks that we are.

I won’t lie – I adore being from Tennessee.   It works as a great excuse when you want to wear no shoes or use “bless her heart” as a backhanded compliment or refer to the police as “the law”.   It also doesn’t hurt that this particular weekend we were up in the Sevierville/Gatlinburg area, which just calls to you to let your inner Dolly out.

I digress.  What I wanted to share was a picture I took of my niece and my father in law that melts my heart into a Paula Deen sized pool of butter.

I L.O.V.E. this picture.  I want to blow it up and frame it in my house, and it’s not even my child.

They were snuggling on the porch of our cabin, he was tickling her in her “pandi” pj’s and she was giggling hysterically.  I had my camera out to take some pictures of the mountains, and I turned around and just started snapping the two of them.

The great thing about always using your family as practice when you’re starting out a photography business is that they all become immune to the camera.  No one blinks when I pull out the big guy and start taking pictures of them doing whatever it is that they’re focused on at the moment.

I hope that in many, many years, when my father in law is long gone and my niece has children of her own, she’ll look at this picture and remember how sweet is was to be 5 and able to curl up so comfortably in her Papa’s lap.  How easy it was to laugh and giggle and wear pandi pajamas and not worry about anything other than where he’s going to tickle next.

Today I am going to be positive.  All day. 

I’m going to take that Voice of Negativity in my head, shove it down onto a rickety chair in the corner of my mind, point my finger in it’s face and emphatically tell that Voice to SHUT. IT.   Simultaneously I will be handing the Voice of Positivity a mic and telling it to SPEAK! UP!

So let’s kick this off with a bang, shall we? 

Things I Am Grateful For Today:

  • It was a beautiful morning – cool, crisp, clear skies with a suggestion of rain, but not for awhile
  • My amazing husband, who I am absolutely, positively, head over heels in love with every single day
  • That my amazing husband has not quit the job he *ahem* likes so we can still pay our bills
  • Our beautiful home
  • I have a job that helps to PAY for that beautiful home
  • The job I have now doesn’t do to my soul what I’m doing to The Bad Voice today
  • My parents and in-laws are spectacular and supportive
  • Our health
  • The Skitties
  • We’re going to the BAHAMAS in 3 days!  Yeah yeah yeah yeah
  • I’ve got four scheduled photo sessions over the next 6 weeks, with 3 more pending (a record!)


Rainbows!  Sunshine!

P.S. Apparently yesterday was list day, not today.  But since I just got around to reading them this morning, I’m going to pretend that they were written today.  So there.

I’m a big believer in signs. I broke up with my husband when we first started dating because of a dream I had.

It was a pretty crazy dream.

So obviously I believe in watching out for what God/life/the universe throws in your path. The billboard sized hints that I have a hard time believing are completely random, especially when they’re so perfectly placed.

I’ve been hit with a lot of Europe images lately. When Josh and I spent over 3months backpacking there in 2006 we used an old video camera to tape (TAPE!) parts of the trip, and we finally got those tapes (OMG TAPES!) made into DVD’s yesterday. So obviously we spent all last night watching videos of us in Europe. Looking very skinny. And very tan. UGH.

A girl in my office is honeymooning to Spain, to Barcelona. Barcelona was by far one of our favorite stops on our trip. We stayed an extra 4 days, which when you’re only spending 2 days in each city is a seriously big deal. She also speaks fluent French, so we chat about Barcelona and I practice my heinous french on her. Poor girl.

Then today I found this post, and it made me simultaneously smile and tear up. It threw me back 4 years ago to riding bikes in Amsterdam (I almost killed a local elderly woman…my bad), driving teensy Grecian roads in our little POS Hyundai (all 4 tires were spares – classy!), being screamed at by the train station man in Portugal, and eating EVERYTHING IN SIGHT in Italy.

If there was ever a time that stressed a relationship, it should have been then. I mean, hell, 90% of the time Josh was the only other person who spoke English. So it was either speak to Josh or speak to no one. And FYI, I cannot “speak to no one”. Just not wired that way. But we had a fantastic time and at the end were even closer than before.

Then we came back and, YAY! Real life! Which is so mindblowingly amazing and mindblowingly angering, all in the same DAY sometimes.

SO. Where was I? Oh right. Signs.

So here we are, sitting at a junction in life where things kind of suck, just the two of us against the world, and then I’m hit with all of these reminders of how great life can be. How great life WAS for the two of us. And while we have stayed so strong with each other, and I know that there’s no one I’d rather be fighting side by side with than my best friend, lately I just don’t want to fight anymore. Like the world is our 7th grade boyfriend, and we need to send OUR bff to tell IT’S bff that we can’t sit next to each other at lunch any more. And we’re TOTALLY not going to 2nd base.

So what’s God/life/the universe trying to tell me with these signs? That another trip to Europe is in order? Is He/it/it trying to give me hope? Or just rubbing it in my face that You guys had your fun! DONE! Or, more appropriately, FINITO!?

I’m having trouble interpreting this sign. Can I have another?

I am tired. So tired. Exhausted may be the better word for my fragile state of mind today. Yesterday about did me in.

It started at work (of course!), and while it’s totally pointless to go into all of the mundane and exasperating details that made yesterday a total cluster fuck, I will say this: if anything has gone wrong in your life or job, please blame me. Because according to everyone else at my office, IT’S MY FAULT.

You failed your drug test? My bad! I should have warned you that smoking the J right before you teetee in a cup was a bad idea

Didn’t pass a background check? My fault! It totally slipped my mind to expunge your record

Forgot you had a conference call? I’ll take that one too! I forgot to be the personal secretary to ALL 700 EMPLOYEES

For the record, I have given my team a mascot: Sally the Scapegoat.

Also, our color is red, for all of the blood that pours out when you STAB US IN THE BACK. We’re going to wear our color every Friday….really ramp up the team building over here.

On the drive home I attempted to take some deep breaths to relax (difficult to do when you can’t breathe through your nose…ends up more like panting), and stir up some amazing mental images of giant glasses of wine and huge servings of homemade lasagna. Yum and yum. I get home, have said glass of wine and giant lasagna, and all begins to right itself in the world.

Then, I’m not really sure what happened.

One minute, Josh and I are watching Modern Family, and the next minute we’re in a deep conversation about the state of our finances (which is not exactly ideal), and then I’m crying hysterically and I can’t stop. What the hell?

The thing is, after we bought our house last year, we knew things were going to be tight for awhile, as I imagine is fairly common when you buy your first home. However, at the time we were both in sales jobs and blindly optimistic about what the economy would bring for us in the coming year. We both assumed that things would pick up in our field (we were both in the same), and that we would be making more money in a year’s time.

However. Things got a little sticky around July, when I reached a mental breaking point and up and quit my job. It wasn’t a decision we came to lightly, but in the end we decided that my mental health was more important than the income being provided. I got a new job that makes, surprisingly, a little more money for the amount of work I do, but it’s still not near what we thought I would be making.

Also, nothing in Josh’s world picked up AT ALL. In fact, thing have slowed down even more, which is almost unfathomable because they were moving like an effing slug before. All of this means that things are tight – really, really, REALLY tight. So, yeah. Great luck this year. Excuse me while I wipe up the sarcasm pooling at my feet.

Summary: terrible day at work + hormones + financial stress = uncontrollable tears.

At least my sinuses are so congested that the tears weren’t accompanied by the usual flood of snot. Yay?

Fortunately I have an UH-MAY-ZING husband, who knows just when to switch from the usually pessimistic spouse to the fabulously! optimistic! Spouse. He held my hand and rubbed my back and handed me tissue after tissue. Then he ran a bath and got me a brandy and a zanax (don’t worry, I have a prescription! NOT A DRUGGIE), and offered me the last large piece of deliciously cheesy lasagna. The man truly knows how to make his wife a happy camper – offer drugs, alcohol, and carbohydrates laced with copious amounts of cheese. Works like a charm every time!

Think anyone at work will mind if I have my magic trio for lunch today?

We’re both sick.  Like, feel like total and complete a-hole, sick.  And while we went to bed around 9:30 to try to sleep it off, it was unfortunately a very active night.  Our conversation went something like this:

Approx midnight

Josh: *cough cough cough*

GG:  You ok?

J: *cough* I think I’m dying *cough*

G: Why don’t you take some COUGH medicine?

J: Good call  *cough*  (gets up to take medicine)


J: *cough cough COUGH*

G: What the hell honey?! Did you take medicine?

J: *cough* I think I’m dying

G: You’re not dying.


G: Dude.  You need to go to the doctor

J: I’m not sick         *cough*



G:  I’m making you a doctor’s appointment tomorrow, because, you know, I like sleep.

J: Don’t be *cough* mean.  I’m *cough* probably dying.  Do you have any hydrocodone left?

G:  You mean the medicine I keep on hand for when I have kidney stones?  Arguably the worst pain on the PLANET?  THAT MEDICINE??

J: *cough*  yes

G:  Whatever.  It’s in the bathroom somewhere.  You can have one if you can find it.

J: *cough*


G: You need to go to a clinic today.  Last night sucked.

J: What are you talking about?

And then my head exploded.

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