Dancing in the Rain

2009 09 07_9880 Prologue

2009 09 07_9877



2009 09 07_9882


Sometimes the simplest moments can change your life.  Tonight I watched my children play in the rain.  They had not a care in the world except to see how many puddles they could jump in. The adults watched in awe. How simple life can be for the young.  If we only took 5 minutes of our day to play in the rain and let go of all of it, I think the world could be a better place.  As I watched them dance and yell and run I was brought back in time for only a moment.  I was 7 yrs old again and I was jumping in the creek behind our house.  My brother was catching water crickets and the raindrops started getting bigger and bigger.  We ran up to our house sliding through the mud, dancing the entire way.  I was alive then and my children gave me that moment all over again as I watched their tiny bodies get soaked, and listened as their laughs got larger and louder.

Soundtrack of My Childhood

I am strangely sad over the news of Michael Jackson's death.  I heard the news via Twitter before it was actually confirmed and knew it was true.  My heart hurt for a moment.  It was so weird. I felt like I lost someone who I had been close with my entire life.  I was though.  Close with him.   As were you.  We all were.  How could we not be.  His life was a real life Truman Show.  He grew up on film.  He lived on a film.  He died on film. I think that my heart hurt because Michael Jackson never stood a chance.  I know he was odd.  He dyed his face for chrissake.  Something must have happened in your past to physically alter your skin color. Besides the point. From that moment his mean daddy put him on that stage, his life had ended.  A shell of a man was born.  A man who we will never know the intricacies of.  We will never know if he was as fucked up as he seemed.  But we shouldn't know.  He is not our brother.  He was not our friend.  Even though we were told  he was by the media's our obsession with his life from child to man.

I am sad for his family.  I am sad that my kids will never see his concert live like I did.  But that sadness only lasts a moment, for as I turn on the soundtrack of my childhood and dance with my own children, the sadness fades.  Michael Jackson taught us that music can do that. It can make the hard times a little bit easier simply by dancing to the music.

Louisiana shocked me yesterday when she started Moonwalking during our MJ Tribute Dance Party

Catcher has some serious moves. Thinking of selling him to Michael Flately.

Working Mama

My Heart

I am a nervous wreck right now.  Tomorrow I go to work.  Tomorrow I leave my children with a girl named Sam.  She's a nice girl.  She's everything I wasn't in college.  A student.  A cheerleader.  A sorority girl.  She is smart and thoughtful and played with my children as though she'd known them for years.

I'm a mess.  I have cleaned my house from top to bottom today in nervous anticipation of what a college girl will think of my home.  I have hugged, squeezed, and practically made out with my children today.  Each second.  Of every minute.  

I am drinking wine now.  And I am reflecting.  I am making myself  guilty with each sip.  I made a choice when I found out I was having the boy.  And I stuck with it.  I chose to stay home.  I chose to be his mother.  I nurtured him.  I watched him grow.  I influenced him.  I taught him words.  I love you.  Mommy you're my best friend.  We lived our lives together and created new lives each day.  And then she came along.  My girl, my biggie, my blue eyed love.  The choice was still mine.  I would be with them both.  I would breathe each breath alongside theirs and I would have no regrets.  I would stand by their sides each day, every day.  I never liked working that much anyways.

And then I realized that I was working.  Everyday.  While they were at home.  While they were awake.  The TV became my go to.  And I realized it wasn't fair.  It wasn't fair to what I had promised them as their mother with my choice to stay home.  But I couldn't change it.  The chef needed more and more help and my writing become somewhat of a reality. Something had to change.

I had to physically go to work.

Tomorrow I go to work.  I become a part of my husband's dream.  And I will cry.  Hell, I am crying right now.  I will cry for him.  I will cry for them.  Shit I will cry for myself.

I am scared shitless and I feel like backing out.  But I can't.  I made a choice to stay at home with them.  And this will enable me to.  Going to work part time at our family's restaurant will allow me to devote all of my time (not at work) to my children.  My babies.  My life.  My loves.

The cold black thing in my chest has melted....

Next Thing I Know She Will Be Sneaking Out & Getting Her Nose Pierced


Biggie Smalls makes her way down East Fourth Street

My baby is 16 months old and I feel like if I close my eyes for too long she will be 16.  It's amazing how the first year of her life is now the past.  Silly life always moving faster or slower than you want it to.  Everyday with my lil'  mama (yes all her nicknames are rappers) is a new and amazing experience.  She is quite frankly the funniest chick I have ever met and I am so lucky to be her best friend.  The Chef & I hung out with her all day yesterday and it was completely our pleasure~we are the luckiest.

Conversations w/ Catcher (& Lou)

In the car this morning: CW: "Hey Catcher show Louisiana your nose."

Catcher: "Sister this is my nose." Points to his nose.

Louisiana points to her nose.

CW: "Show her your eyes."

Catcher: Points to eyes. "Eyes."

Louisiana points to her eyes.

CW: Show her your mouth."

Catcher points to his mouth.  Louisiana points to her mouth.

CW: What's inside your mouth Catcher?"

Catcher: "Teeth mommy." Pointing to his teeth.

Louisiana points to her nose.  Then she sticks her finger up it.

Catcher: "What's in your nose Weeziana?  Boogers are in your nose!!!!!!"  Catcher maniacially laughs and then sticks his finger in his nose.  He then proceeds to pull one out and show his sister.  Louisiana follows suit and begins scream laughing (the most pleasant sound ever) still with her little finger up her nose.

Happy morning to me.

Widow'Mas 2008

We had a spectacular Christmas week filled with friends and family, Festivus, and food.  

We have certainly been blessed this year with so many new great friends and so many great times.  The Chef's last night at Cento was sad, fun, and enormously busy but we got to hang out with some of our favorite people, Mike & Liz, Julie & Steve, Roni & Kevin, Billy & Barbara (and Henry too!).  We are a lucky family that seems to be getting bigger and bigger with each new venture the Chef & I take on.  Life is good.


Life is fucking awesome.

I hope that you & yours had a special Christmasukahwanza!!!


Cheers Bitches.

Bakugun is not Religious

The holiday season is upon us.  TV has turned into a giant toy commercial.  Walmart is a war zone.  And all my son can talk about is this weird ass card game that I have never heard of.  Tis the season. In trying to spread education and respect for all I am putting forth my best effort to teach my kids about all holidays that occur in the next month.  Let me tell you, it has NOT been a cake walk.

I have been taking books and books and books out of the library all year round that focus on different cultures, celebrations, and peoples.  Now that holiday season is here I have made a serious effort (we're talking 3 times a week library trips) to find the perfect books to inspire, educate, enlighten, and heighten interest in the boy.  So far I have had no luck.  The Hanukkah books are D-R-Y.  I'm not Jewish so I don't really know the staple books.  But I know they can't all be super boring.  It's the festival of lights man!  The Kwanza books are ok, at least the ones I found, but I am renting them from a library in a town with a population of 20 African-Americans.  Probably not 20, but not 20,000 either.  The selection is slim.  And the winter solcitice books, NON EXSISTENT.  I've got Christmas covered, I think.  We usually do The Night Before Christmas & follow up with The Nightmare Before Christmas.  Although I don't really have any books that explain the whole Jesus thing in a fun non boring & dry way.  I guess I'm not covered.


I have decided to buy a holiday collection for our library (built of wine boxes) but I desperately need your help.  Any suggestions pertaining to ALL holidays, cultures, astrological will be considered and appreciated!


***The first five readers to suggest a GREAT HOLIDAY BOOK will receive from me (and the Cuyahoga County Public Library) the award winning & beautiful illustrated Great Books For Kids 2008 book.  Just make sure to leave me your email.  Peace & War.



Stood Up @ 29

I have been a Stay at Home Mamma for 3 1/2 years and I don't regret a day of it.  My decision to stay home with Catcher at first stemmed from the fact that I didn't want to do day care.  Nor did I want to pay for it.  The fact was when Catcher was born my salary in NYC was next to nothing and day care would have taken it all.  The cost of a nanny ($100,000/yr) was out of the question. I have thoroughly enjoyed staying home with my kids.  It has MADE my life!  Everyday I see something new in each of them and I everyday I am taught something new by each of them.  It is like university all over again minus the vodka and zannies.  I love having the freedom to educate my children and take them to places most kids have yet to see.  I am proud of the fact that I can do the parenting thing on my own.  I can pack up the Prius with 2 kids, their double stroller, and head downtown to spend the day at the Science Center.  I can take both kids grocery shopping and be out in under an hour.  I somehow manage to get Biggie Smalls bathed & fed & in bed every night by 8.  Each night I lay the boy down by 9 and I find myself reading 30 book straight until 10.  And I am happy. So so happy.

My days can be stressful, my days can be perfect.  But at the end of said day all I need to do is look at there way to cute faces and know I made the right choice.

But sometimes choices are taken away.  Sometimes the choice is no longer an option.  Sometimes your choice leads to a bigger choice.  When the Chef & I moved from Brooklyn to Cleveland we knew we were going to open a restaurant.  And we knew that I was going to work in it.  The Greenhouse Tavern project has been moving forward weekly and I need to get involved.  I need to play a more active role with the rest of the time.  Starting next week I will attend the weekly project meetings on Tuesdays as well as take a 4 week class about LEED on Wednesday night.  I am also writing this blog, updating the Chef's blog,  and writing for About.com and Cleveland.com on a weekly basis.  And I am trying to shed some FAT before Paris so I have decided that I am going to sign up for a hellacious class called Boot Camp.  Apparently it is designed like the actual Boot Camp one goes to if they sign up for the war.  Doesn't sound fun but sounds very effective.  Did I forget to mention that  also have two kids under 3, one super allergic to everything pitbull, and one pug who loves to sneak under the fence and run away at the most inopportune times?

So yeah.  That's my crazy life.  And to help out with my vida loca the Chef & I have decided to hire some help.  We started looking for a grad student/nanny/mother's helper last week to help us out every Tuesday.  I have gotten a few responses and even set up an interview this morning.  The girl who responded sounded great, her resume rocked and she even offered up a background check.  The problem...she no showed and no called.  Until now.

As I began to type this post I was angry.  The Chef & I wasted all morning waiting around for our potential sitter and she no showed.  I had set up the appointment for 10.30am.  By 12.30pm we knew that we probably were'nt going to see her.  Then about half way through this post, she called.  It was 1pm.  She said that she got stuck at the doctore's with her son and didn't have my phone number to call.  We chatted for a few minutes and we rescheduled for Wednesday.  My question is this.  Should I have evn bothered to reschedule?  Is her not showing up a sign of things to come?  How did you find help for your own families?  I could use all the advice I could get.  I am so NERVOUS about leaving them in someone's care but I have to do it.  I have to be able to leave them.  It's just a matter of time before GHT is open and I am putting 25 hours in.

Kids Under 3 24-7

The chef is in San Fran this week filming another episode of Dinner Impossible. My parents are vacationing in Florida.

My BFF AK is also in the Sunshine State.

Looks like I've got myself a week of hanging with these two crazy cats:

Not that I mind because they are by far the most entertaining human beings on the planet. Granted I may lose my mind by Tuesday but that seems to happen weekly when you've got two kids under the age of 3.