Friday, December 28, 2012

7 Quick Takes: Leaving Home

On a practical level, moving vast distances with children in tow has never in the history of humanity been easier. I am well aware of the fact that as I pack up my first-world toddlers to cross the pond to greener pastures vineyards, more than 2,000 years ago the Holy Family was preparing a road trip to Egypt. And I'm pretty sure that donkey was not the first-century version of business select.

But, but ... holy crap there's a lot to do. We sent Dave's parents and siblings out the door at 3:30 this a.m. and fell to the task of caring for two ear infected small ones. Naturally, daddy woke up with a stomach bug, so we're operating at approximately 25% capacity. Here is what remains, not that you are in any way interested:

1. Visas. Dave's is allegedly en route from the Italian consulate in Chicago. It better be, because they took his passport a month ago to begin the process, and we kinda can't fly without it. The boys and I are banking on God's good graces and a connection at the Vatican which will, in theory, allow us to pursue our family visa from Italian soil, rather than trying to finish the process from the U.S. (which we've been told is impossible in our time frame.)

2. More documents than you have ever seen in your life, copied in triplicate and 'apostilled,' a weird legal notorization which grants validity to U.S. legal documents outside the States. Oh, and translations of each in Italian. Think birth certificates, marriage licenses, passports, etc. Fun and expensive, the perfect late December combo.

3. Purge and pack the remainder of our belongings. I've laid out 8 suitcases in the basement and while it looks like a hell of a lot to carry through the airport, it doesn't look nearly spacious enough to encapsulate the 'downsized' wardrobes, books, toys, toiletries and home goods I've been culling for the past 6 weeks. Goodwill, it's time for me to return the favor: 2 metric tons of crap coming your way.

4. Learn Italian. So probably stop using the Rosetta Stone box as a place to rest open beer bottles on. Or at least pop the CD in while drinking the next beer. Plus, that air-traffic controller headset it came with is stone cold awesome.

5. Probably stop drinking 800 of my 2,400 daily calories. (Or at least cut back on the solid ones. Cutting out smoking has already jeopardized my legitimacy in Italian mommy circles. I'd better not risk things by lowering my tolerance, too.)

6. Set up my awesome!brand new!amazing! stroller that came today. Convince children it is a worthy trade off for having sold all their books, toys, car seats, and grandparents.

7. Say goodby to all the beautiful friends we've made here. I'm not going to lie, I got a leetle bit choked up after reading this piece written by a dear friend of ours. It's hard to believe that in less than two weeks, we're leaving for who knows how long, and we won't be seeing our children grow up together. This crazy journey we're embarking on is beautiful and exciting, but it isn't easy.

For more or less random, go get your takes on with Jen.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

What I Wore Sunday: Christmas Adam

Afternoon readers,

Tis the night before the night before Christmas, and we are gearing up to get down at Casa Uebbing.

In preparation for the holy feast to come, we have been scrubbing, cleaning, and fluffing all throughout the house, all while wrangling two sick sickies with an ear infection and a cold from hades, respectively. I would take the time to mention who has what, except that at Dave's insistence, we buzzed both boy's heads last night and now my (sob) baby looks identical to my (gulp) toddler. Soooooo, basically can't tell them apart from a distance. 7 lbs separates JP from world domination, and by that I mean being able to defend his floppy self when Joey drops an elbow on him and starts pummeling.

All in good fun.

Without further ado, I bring to you what you've all come here to see: mah church threads.

Today's post is sponsored by holyfreakingamazingbesthusbandever. And you'll soon see why...

Gaze into Christmas future

Now contemplate how many calories are in that little red cup, and my ever-widening mommy flanks

But from this angle? Nailed it!

'Take your shades off, darling. Let them see how well we slept last night...

'Did you think I would still be making us take selfies once we were married?'

The good stuff:

Dress: Banana Republic outlet
Necklace: Lia Sophia, gifted
Earrings: Targay
Boots: Frye(!) 30th birthday present which will never, ever leave my feet.
Shades: Van Huesen outlet
Starbucks: making your holidays merry and gay

Happy FLAP-ing, ladies!

Rejoice, He's coming...

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Christmas Adam

It's not too late, you know, to close Advent out right.

But it's a little too early to start decorating for Christmas, at least in my house. Which is a pity, because the tree is already dead. I blame the altitude.

The truth? Well, the tree is definitely dead. But we watered it semi faithfully, so I don't rather makes me feel like the 5 lb discrepancy between pregnancies did: #1 - ice cream binges and little to no exercise: 55 lbs; #2 - gym 6 days a week and a food journal: 50 lbs. Screw it.

Next year, that sucker can wither and die on its own accord. No coffee pots filled with tap water for you, Mr. $50 fir tree.

Anyway, back to the truth. The truth is, I've been so scattered and stressed and idiotically fixated on minute packing details like having!enough!3Mcommandstrips! (What? Seriously what the hell?) that I haven't gotten around to much hall-decking this Advent.

Which is Advent-ageous in keeping with the liturgical spirit of the season, wouldn't you agree?

So bad. So, so bad.

But it is kinda cool that Christmas is 5 days away and I haven't decorated my house yet. Meaning, this final Sunday of Advent when my in-laws arrive, they will see nary a sprig of mistletoe or a carefully hung stocking. But that's okay, we all know they're coming for the grandkids, anyway.

But here's anooooooother cool thing. Actually it's a really weird thing. In my family of origin, Clan Senour, we called the day before Christmas Eve 'Christmas Adam.' Get it?

You should see us at a wedding together. Or anywhere they serve alcohol, really.

Christmas Adam is the most wonderful day of the year. Why, you ask? Because it's entirely contrived! Free from commercialism, sentimentalism, or any outside pressure to deliver. It Plus, aaaaaaall your last minute shopping needs can be addressed on this most secular of days.

So I invite you, dear readers, to embrace Christmas Adam this year. Last minute suicide mission to the mall? Christmas Adam. Bare halls beckoning you to deck them? Christmas Adam. Need a half case of wine from your local Costco liquor store? Christmas Adam.

I'd like to consider this my act of charity for the day, but this is really a far more worthy cause.

All my love and procrastination,

Santa's medium sized helper.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Everything I Needed to Know About Motherhood

I was the most obnoxiously over-read and over-studied mother to be in the history of the world.

Shocking, I know.

I remember sitting at my desk in my office job (where nobody! ever! stopped me! from going to the bathroom!) and reading through birth and pregnancy sites online and making elaborate plans about labor and delivery and vaguely percolating on breastfeeding and vaccines and actually making judgements on other women's parenting styles - especially regarding sleep - while I was still pregnant.

Reach back in time and slap me.

I think I actually (vom) chimed in on somebody's facebook something or other about how we were planning on doing a brilliant hybrid of Babywise and the Baby Whisperer with our baby. Who was still in utero. Giving me exactly zero experience or credibility. But did that stop my from commenting? nooooooooo, of course not.

Slap me again.

Fast forward 2.5 years and behold one tired and mildly chagrined recovering baby expert.

I was such a good parent before I had these kids.

Seriously, if I had a dollar for every time I've done something I swore I'd never do as a mom, or for every time I have miserably and gloriously deviated from the birthing/parenting/organizing/whatever-ing plan of my dreams...well damn, I'd have like 20 dollars in mah pocket...

Case in point: breastfeeding. If you had told me I would have nursed wolverine number one until the ripe old age of 13 months even!though!he!bit! I would have tut tutted and patted your simple head.

Conversely, if you'd told me that, in the midst of crushing post partum depression, I would fixate on formula feeding as some kind of bizarre symbol of personal failure, vowing to never give a drop of it to either of my children, I would have laughed in your face.

Oh, the glorious hindsight of the overweight, overworked, and chronically sleep-deprived parent.

Speaking of sleep deprivation, I seem to recall also having very definite thoughts about what was or wasn't an appropriate way to respond to children after hours. CIO was to be my banner, and I would ride forth into battle with a heart of stone.

I failed to take into account the uniquely potent chemical cocktail of mommy hormones which flood mah brain whenever one of the little pups so much as whimpers in the night. Hence, minutes feeling like hours of painful, painful screamfests leading to nearly inevitable resolve crumblings and midnight retrievals from the enemy camp.

Also on my 'never will I ever list:'

Junk food. Oh, I'm sorry, was that cheetoh not organic? Did I seriously just dump a handful of cinnamon sugar sparkle Chex on the 7 month old's high chair tray? Wait, is his tray even attached, or is he just shoved up against the filthy kitchen table top in such a way that his chubby buns cannot disengage from his seat?

Jammies in public. Oh the humanity. Costco, church, the gym, the dr's office, the Secretary of State's office (don't ask, don't tell); you name it, we've been there in footies.

Unbuckled car riding (am I in danger of getting arrested for admitting this? Whatever, we're leaving the country). I vividly recall shrieking at my mother for pulling out of a parking space before I was done buckling my precious firstborn into his seat; I must now confess that I have nursed on the fly with little brother. At least twice. It's almost like we were made to dwell in the land of babies on laps in taxi cabs...

Vaccinations. No vaccinations! Yes vaccinations! Every third vaccination, but skip the fourth dose of each alternating month if the moon is waxing! Still bleeping trying to figure this one out!

Swimming lessons. Babies could naturally swim, right? I watched videos of it on Youtube. It was real. Then I had a real one. Turns out I didn't want to drop him in the deep end to see what would happen 'by instinct.'

Bradley method natural childbirth. Ahem. See references here and here.

In rambling sum, I knew basically nothing before I became a mother, and I know even less now, if possible.

I don't know why I needed to spill these beans, except that turning 30 at the end of this week is making me feel equal parts wise, melancholic, and laughably inexperienced to be entering the land of legitimate adults.

And with that, I bid you all a very fine evening. I'll be up feeding my 8 month old newborn shortly, so I'd best turn in. He's totally sleeping through the night, thanks to my stellar sleep training methodology. Well, except on nights that end in 'Y.'

Go Back to Sleep Now, My Darling

Holding all the mamas and daddies in my heart and before the Sacred Heart of Jesus this week, and especially during the coming Christmas season. I like to think that each of those little ones who entered into Paradise last week were greeted by the Holy Trinity with this lullaby.

May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

What I Wore Sunday: Jingle Jam

Hail from the gloriously high and dry elevation of 7,800 feet. Monument, Colorado...almost heaven.

But anyway, the husband and I slipped out for Mass alone this morning - alone I tell you - and it.was.awesome. Homily? I heard it. Eucharist? I got it. Both readings and the responsorial Psalm? Yep, listened to those order.

Afterwards, I enjoyed a leisurely afternoon of Broncos football, children napping on a separate floor from me, and plenty o' aunts, uncles and grandparents to hold them allllllll day long.

Then, I conscripted this lovely lady into snapping my weekly selfies:

Behold, the youngest Senour sister. Ain't she purdy? 

She obliged, willingly. Let the all-humiliation hour commence.

Oh, Christmas tree...

How lovely are your branches. I just have to touch them.

Gaudete Sunday. Nothing says rejoice like a head wreathed in evergreen. 
Outfitted by a thrifty triple threat. I am on fire:

Top: Banana Republic, thrifted
Skirt: Tag ripped out but prooooobably Target, thrifted
Shoes: Nine West, thrifted

Leading me to this little gem, as introduced to mi familia by our recently returned collegiate crew. Warning: F bombs. Like, several. But apt anthem for my awesome.

Forgive my blurry cell phone pix?

Happy Sunday, off to FLAP you go.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Say 'Ahhhh'

Yesterday was an auspicious day in the Uebbing household, and by that I mean every member of the adult team got a shower.

Also, we went for a dental triple threat mid-workday, in which 3/4 of our members climbed into the 'ol saddle for a scraping/buffing/flossing with piano wire session to the very reasonable tune of $340 bones.

Feeling stupidly optimistic and even a teensy bit excited about 'getting away from it all' at the spa waiting room complete with current editions of US Weekly and BHG and a Keurig and refrigerated bottled water and a clean, non-germ infested kiddy corner, I packed up both kids and swooped by the office to pick up Daddy for a real family outing. Because the family that x-rays together, stays together. Because they've seen all eachother's secrets...

But I digress.

No sooner had I settled in for a comfortable catch up session on Jessica Simpson's latest pregnancy and Selena and Bieber's latest reconciliation than Dave decided to excuse himself to the restroom sans kiddo.


25 seconds later, JP and Joey were vying heroically to capture my undivided attention, one via frantic nursing and the other via squatting into business position and screaming 'clean and dry Mommy!' causing the receptionist's face to melt into a mask of anticipatory horror. I believe I fed her fears by asking Joey if he needed to use the potty, thus confirming her suspicions that he was indeed potty training and might not have been wearing the appropriate undergarments for hazard control purposes. (He was. We're not sadists.)

Nevertheless, I sprang into action, not wanting to alarm the receptionist further. Most likely flashing her with a stray boob shot, I scooped up the offending squatter and made for the door to the lobby elevator, where another bathroom awaited us. Joey screamed pleasantly about wanting to push the buttons, and I ignored him as we sprinted from the elevator towards the bathroom.

The thing is, he just isn't turning in the 100 meter times we'd like to see from him these days, in spite of his high carbohydrate and chocolate coconut milk diet. So I ought not have been surprised when I turned to usher him in the bathroom door and instead saw the elevator doors closing in front of his horrified face.



Joey? Joey!! Joey don't touch any of the buttons. (Frantically hitting the up button trying to call the elevator back)

Beep beep beeeeeeeeep. Hello, Denver county 911, what is your emergency, elevator occupants?


As Joey wailed his woes into the listening ear of an unsuspecting emergency operator, I sprinted upstairs to catch the elevator on its return trip. Except it had gone to the basement.

Joey, get off when the elevator opens again! Can you hear me?

Mommeeeeeeeeeeeee, are you?! Mommy? 

Does anyone need emergency assistance at this location? I repeat, does anyone need emergency...

Suddenly I caught a glimpse of blonde hair in the open stairwell 3 floors below me. Tucking the large baby into a football hold, I sprinted down to subground level and scooped up one very naughty toddler into my free arm for a Heisman dash back to the foyer.

Hello? Does anybody need assistance?

Where was the damn elevator? It was still somewhere between floors, but the operator's increasingly concerned voice was ringing out for all office dwelling inhabitants to hear.

Crouching low next to the closed elevator doors, a baby under each arm, I whispered furtively that we were fine, that everyone was fine, before slinking back into the dentist's waiting room. Dave was looking at me quizzically, no doubt impressed at the sweat I'd managed to break in under 3 minutes.

Just squeezing in some cardio, dear, I snarled at him, tossing both kids his way before enthusiastically volunteering to go first.

The rest of the appointment went swimmingly, filled with blood curdling screams, awkward discussions of Italian real estate and gas prices with a gloved fist in my mouth, and snippets of truly enjoyable QT with my youngest, who perched disarmingly on my stomach while Dr. Cheerful scraped away and regailled me with tales of moms who had breastfed in the chair before, don't you worry about a thing.


Naturally, Joey let exactly no one near his mouth, screamed like a wounded animal when deposited into the chair, and earned himself a super bouncy ball, a new toothbrush, and a gentle pat pat on the head and an invitation to come back and try again in a year or 6.

We'll almost definitely be back never.
On our merry way out, he called the bleeping fire department again.

Don't worry, I made Dave answer this time. I'm sure they didn't know it was the same negligent parent-offspring duo.

I'm sure.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

What I Wore Sunday: Advent Cheer Edition

Awkward pregnant/Napoleon hand. Neither is relevant, promise.

Trying my bestest to look like everyone's drunk Irish uncle. Succeeding wildly.

Generationally awkward. I promise, Joey was striking this same pose seconds before.

2/3 of these things are not as brooding as the other...

The skinny:

Dress: off-brand, thrifted
Jacket: Talbot's (don't judge me): thrifted
Shoes: JCrew, thrifted
Necklace: Target
Bracelet: Helzberg
Children: shared a (bleepity bleep bleep bleep) room last night! Maybe some of us slept, maybe not. But they had eachother to torment. Revenge is mine, sayeth the mom.

Happiest 2nd Sunday of Advent. Hope yours is spent drinking seasonal beer, watching the snow fly, and checking facebook for nothing new.

Off to the link up you go.

Friday, December 7, 2012

7 Quick Takes: 'Pull the Curtain Back' Edition

I was reading a newly discovered blog gem earlier this week and I experienced a pang of annoyance that I could not ascertain an 'about me' section about the author anywhere on the page. Feeling momentarily frustrated, I decided to search for post tags with a similar title, but was thwarted anew. 'What's this?' I asked myself, indignantly (for I am 9 times out of 10 indignant in my internal monologues) 'Don't I deserve more information about this author/her background/her academic pedigree/her favorite time of day to go to Target?'

Um, no. No I don't. But the entire experience caused me to look in my blogging mirror, see my coal-black kettle reflection staring at me accusingly, and decide to offer you fine people some kind of autobiographical nonsense about myself.

Since I am only moderately technologically literate, I have yet to discover how to make separate 'pages' on my blog, so you won't find those handy little tabs up top. Grace could probably tutor me, but then again, she is possibly busy training for a marathon while cooking a 3rd trimester turkey and peeling one toddler off another well-dressed mini model, so I won't impose.

Without further mind-numbing explanation or detail, I present to you:

7 fun facts about Jenny @ Mama Needs Coffee
1. I do, in fact, need coffee. Every morning, regardless of season, gestational state, or geographic location. When Dave and I got married, we blew most of our wedding budget on a 12 day honeymoon on the Big Island of Hawaii (highly recommend. My mom has almost forgotten about the plastic cutlery at our tables, but our luau memories are firmly intact).
Although I was more relaxed and happy than I have ever been in my life, I still needed at least 12 ounces of the black magic to get my day started. And please, within one hour of waking. Lest the migraine sets in. One year I gave it up for lent, and it was .... okay, it will never happen again. The end.

2. I am a Catholic 're-vert' ... sort of. The oldest of 7 kids, I was born and raised in a good Catholic family, but I did attend public school. This + an insatiable desire to date football players led me to flout my parent's wishes and attend CU Boulder as an undergrad. I followed a shoulderpad-clad linebacker up to the People's Republic and stayed for 4 sad years, the large part of which were spent smoking, binge drinking, eating Chipotle, and skipping classes. Oh, and skipping Masses.
Thanks to the tireless prayers of my faithful mother, the loving pursuit of a FOCUS missionary, and the timely wager of my holier-than-me little sister, I came to myself sometime in the spring of my Senior year and made the life-altering decision to transfer to Franciscan University of Steubenville, where I did one victory lap of undergraduate studies and then a couple years of MA work in theology and, appropriately enough, counseling. I thank God every day (or at least on the days I remember to) for the second chance, and for the beautiful family He has given me.

3.  Pope John Paul II was - and continues to be - instrumental in my conversion and my ongoing pursuit of God's will for my life. On the day he died, I spent the morning glued to my tv, missing all my morning classes and almost missing work. At a certain point, I couldn't take the talking heads any longer, and I wandered a few blocks to the nearest Catholic parish where I found an image of him displayed in the front of the church, accompanied by flowers and candles.
I sat dazedly in the pew, tears streaming inexplicably down my face, for I don't know how long. It was me and a little old lady alone in the church for at least an hour, but at some point a journalist from the Denver Post happened upon me, snapped a photo of me kneeling before the late pontiff's image, and asked if he could conduct a brief interview for their special coverage section. Long story short: I have a picture and accompanying quote of myself in the paper on the day my conversion began in earnest.

4.  I still love to drink. Like, love me a glass of wine or a beer (or two). I take the illustrious GK Chesterton as my model of authentic Christian living, recalling his admonition to 'let your religion be less of a theory and more of a love affair' and taking to heart his declaration that 'in Catholicism, the pipe, the pint, and the Cross can all fit together.' Amen.

 5. I have an unshakable love for cats. I know, I know...I missed my true calling to be a chubby spinster in a velour jogging suit surrounded by four-legged friends eating from glass dishes of fancy feast...but it's true: I've never met a cat I didn't at least sort of like.
 Case in point: approximately once a year, I petition my husband in earnest to relent his 'no pets' standard and allow a feline into our house. He then informs me that 'my fertility is probably returning' (we've been pregnant or nursing for our entire marriage thus far), and I pout, decide he is right, and go back to tempting neighborhood strays into our yard with dishes of 1% milk. They never stay. Needless to say, I am tres excited for our Roman relocation for, among other things, the opportunity to befriend literally thousands of stray cats that populate the city.

6. I love to run. I try to log 5-10 miles a week these days, because I'm mostly running indoors and treadmills are boooooooring. But the childcare at my gym is stellar, so what can I do? I have run 5 half marathons in my former life, and I hope to run another...someday. As of now, I'm still 20 lbs overweight with baby fluff and mah feet hurt after an hour of Zumba, so suffice it to say, I'm not in 13.1 shape. But someday...

7. Despite being raised in an awesomely large family, and being the oldest of said brood, I've never wanted a large family of my own. What I mean is, I've never dreamed  of having my own baseball team or fantasized about a 15-passenger van full of people who look like me. Now, we practice NFP, so every month or so we have the 'is this a good time to be open to another member of this family' conversation. And so far, we've said 'yep' twice.
Being a faithful, NFP-practicing Catholic does not, contrary to popular misconception, mean having as many kids as physically possible. It does mean being open to God's will for your family - for your entire married life. So the reality is, we might end up with a large family in the end, if we determine that to be God's will for our marriage. The cool thing is, it's an ongoing conversation. So while today doesn't feel like the day where I can confidently say 'Yeah, 6 kids would be great!' I might feel differently 7 years or 7 weeks from now. And that's cool.

 So there you have it, folks. 7 things about me you didn't know you didn't need to know...

Happy Friday! To Jen's you go.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Ode to Advent

Twas the night before this one, and all through this house,

There is crap piled in corners and boxes throughout,

Though our Christmas tree's heavenly scent fills the air,

All the toilets are dirty, the sinks filled with hair;

So what to my aching mom eyes should appear,

But the glistening chance to do Advent 'right' this year.

No music of Christmas, no garlands of lights,

Just 4 simple candles, which we light every night.

Though the Christmas tree stands, its branches are bare,

And I pretend piety - not sloth - got us there.

While my dishes are soiled and the laundry piles higher up,

I sit on the floor while Joey wheels me his fire truck;

Which is captained by Mary and St. Joseph dolls,

Though not baby Jesus, he's hiding from all

Until Christmas morning when we will awake,

And rush to the kitchen, mimosas to make;

And while I sigh and I survey the squalor around me,

I marvel at His love - in chaos, He found me

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Worth a re-post of its own

Found this little gem while hopping around from blog to blog following last Sunday's link up, and it is one of the most concise and well-researched cases for the problem with hormonal contraceptives that I've seen.

Please read, please share with your friends and family, and please keep the conversation going. It's 2012 - women shouldn't be dying from medical ignorance.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Let Me Be Clear

(shudder) Can anyone utter or even think that phrase without hearing president smugbama sneering in their cranium?

Moving on.

When I said a social media fast was upon this house as Christmas time draws near, I guess I wasn't counting on the, um, reality that blogs are somewhat social and media related. But rest assured, dear readers...I couldn't go 23 days without blogging unless I were 9.25 months pregnant or severely and recently postpartum. You can check my archives, those are both conditions which must present in order for me to shut the front door and leave your eyes in peace.

For me, blogging is less social media and more cathartic, semi-rewarding use of the intellect. So basically the exact opposite of facebook, et al.

And who knows? Maybe with all my newfound free time away from PinFaceGram and the barrage of hopelessly unrealistic images of beauty, style, and hardwood floors sans old black beans and rice cereal fossils, I will engage in some deep, meaningful and non-political reflections on truth, goodness, and the meaning of life.


At any rate, rest assured you will be kept abreast of our ongoing saga to unload our worldly possessions, the infernal process of obtaining Italian visas, and the antics of a certain potty-resistant 2 year old and his chunky, immobile sidekick, JP the mellow. Who is just happy to be here. And is perhaps my favorite child. Shhhh...

Oh, and lots more pictures of me dressed in grown up clothes. At least one time per week.You are most welcome, in advance.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

What I Wore Sunday

Linking up with Fine Linen and Purple again, even though Mass was an abysmal C- for one naughty 2 year old, and I didn't actually get photographed in my church clothes.

Moving on. All fancy photos courtesy of my handsome husband who encouraged me to frolic on the front lawn while our mysterious neighbor's roommate's wife (does that make sense? Me neither.) smoked sullenly against the side of her Chevy Fiesta and eyed our crazy up and down.

Casual hair tuck.

Not a Honda commercial. (Okay, maybe a little bit. 2003 Honda Accord LX, anyone? Our buyer fell through today.)

The decidedly-casual-not-for-Mass outfit details:
Top: Old Navy (thrifted)
Necklace: Target
Jeans: Express. Full price. Because of this.
Shoes: Blowfish (thrifted)
Tank: Kirkland's Best (because I'm worth it.)

Onward and upward to Advent.

I'll be off facebook, instacrack and all other non-work related forms of social media for the 'little Lent' of Advent, and boy oh boy do I need it. I have been a festering ball of stress and emotional instability all week long, culminating in a voluntary 4 am wake-up yesterday in anticipation of our somewhat underwhelming 'indoor garage sale,' in which we sold approximately 1/3 of our earthly possessions, which is 2/3 less than we needed to.

Trying so hard not to freak out every hour, on the hour, about what needs to get done, and instead focus on what is being done for us, i.e. by God, Who is actually in control of this and all situations.

Also trying verrrrry hard not to think about the 2/3 of a pack of Camel Lights resting somewhere in the bottom of my trash can. Stress habit or not, it was becoming something of a hindrance to my mile time and to my ability to smell not awful when Dave gets home from work.