Category Archives: Life

Life Update

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Long time, no post! I’m not quite sure why this blog had to become the sacrifice with all of the stuff going on in my life lately, but it has. Facebook still gets a little bit of love, as do Tumblr and Pinterest even. Yet Cornucopia of Craft was just left to sit on the sidelines.

When I started this blog, the primary intention was to post anything that had to do with crafts, anything from writing to knitting and drawing. Ever since I gave birth to my daughter back in November 2010, the posts got a little less frequent. Then, after I started college in the Fall of 2011, the posts became a “once in a blue moon” kind of thing. My life has certainly still been filled with all of the crafts and various creative activities… I just haven’t been updating about it.

There is a time and a place to update this blog. I am sure that as I continue to live, I will find the time and patience to update more often. As of now, I find it difficult to even sit down for an extended amount of time to write. I feel like I have to get up and change my activities frequently, or else nothing will get done! (I am sure that is partially an illusion I am feeding myself.)

I’ve become somewhat of a social hermit, only hanging out with my immediate family and my boyfriend, and occasionally my friends. School only brought out the introvert even more, for homework sucks out a lot of time that I could spend doing any number of things.

Currently I am approaching the end of the Summer semester, after having taken a Philosophy class and a Literary Analysis class. It’s been fun, but also challenging. With the Philosophy class, it was 5 weeks of having to write an entire essay once a week. I somehow managed to get by just fine. Then I will have 3 whole weeks of freedom until the Fall semester starts. It feels like school has been going on forever, but it really hasn’t. 2 years isn’t shit, as they say.

Lilah has been a wonderful girl. She has gotten so big, and her vocabulary expands in multitudes every day, it seems. She can grasp concepts that astound me, for it feels like just yesterday I was holding her tiny body in my arms. Before I know it, she’ll grow up… but that’s still a while down the road. Sometimes I feel guilty for going to school so late in the game, but I think that Lilah made me want to do something with my life, so that is why I started going.

So… life goes on. Maybe I will update again soon. 🙂

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On young girls getting pregnant…

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While I should have been writing my philosophy paper that is due in 3 hours, I took a brief detour in Wikipedia land and found myself on a page containing information about all of the youngest known pregnancies and births. I was astounded that even girls as young as 5 years old became pregnant. What strikes me is the overwhelming amount of these pregnancies that involves the rape or molestation by an older male. I bet it is the last thing that these men were expecting… is for a very young girl who does not look to be at menstruating age to become pregnant.

As a mother of a very wonderful little girl, I often catch myself worrying over who should watch my daughter for me when I am not able to. I should not worry over these things, but it is an issue that continues to occur all over the planet in different cultures and countries. Rape and abuse is everywhere, and a lot of people do not speak up about it. I know because I used to be one of them.

I love my daughter to death, and I would be eternally hurt and angry if anyone were to hurt my daughter in that way. One should not be too speculative about these things, but it is worth listening to that inner voice that one may have regarding their trust of others. It’s that gut feeling.

Encounters on the bus.

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While riding the bus to campus this morning, I noticed an older man with hair long enough to reach the small of his back. He had just gotten onto the bus, and he was talking to no one in particular as he sipped from his Wendy’s coffee cup. As he was finishing his sentence, his eyes settled on mine. I took this as an invitation to talk. I took off my headphones, said goodbye to “Comfortably Numb”, and asked him if he could repeat himself.

“When a person says, ‘Thank you.’ it is an expression of gratitude. When a person says thank you yet asks for more, that is bordering on begging.” He said to me. “I’ve seen people who are older than me and they don’t know very much. I’ve talked to 4 year olds who are chatterboxes.”

“Some people go through traumatic events and end up going further into themselves, unable to listen to anyone. Some people are wise beyond their years because they grew from the traumatic event.”

We continued to talk and at one point I could hardly hear him because of the revving of the bus engine, which is considerably loud, especially on the older buses.

“Maybe there is something in your brain that is keeping you from hearing me.” He responded. Then he talked about God and the Devil, and how the Devil is an entity just as alive as anyone else. He told me that some form of darkness was invading my brain and kept me from being able to hear him.

The bus stopped to pick someone else up, and we could hear a fight going on outside. He looked me straight in the eyes and told me, “Don’t pay attention to that, it’s a distraction.” and he kept talking.

He saw a tree that looked like a willow and asked me if it was a willow. I didn’t know for sure.

“It looks like a birch tree, though.” He said. “Maybe it is a birch tree that was genetically mixed with a willow tree. Maybe it was natural, or maybe it was done by man.”

“A human being is naturally born from the Earth, so if a man were to combine the genetics of two trees, is it not still natural?” I said to him.

“I never thought of it that way.” He said. “I am very glad I rode the bus today, I learned a lot. Thank you.”

I was very glad to have had an honest and interesting conversation with someone. I cherish those kind of talks on the bus. They are random and you learn about people and all the various personalities that encompass humanity.

Then he said, “I am going to get off of the bus soon. Hopefully I will see you again. Would you want my number? Life is short after all.”

I am flattered by his interest, but I am already in a relationship with someone whom I love and cherish. I tell him, “Maybe you would like talking to my boyfriend.”

“Oh, you have a boyfriend. Never mind then.” He said. “I don’t do three way relationships.”

“Neither do I.” I told him. “I like to have conversations with people on the bus. If someone talks to me, I try to listen.”

He smiled at me and stopped talking.

He was very nice about it all, but then he abruptly got up and went to talk to someone he knew in the back of the bus. He was done talking to me. He got off the bus a few stops later and said Thank You to the bus driver.

I wonder if he knew I had a boyfriend from the beginning if he would have talked to me. It is unfortunate that knowing my relationship status was a determining factor in him wanting to talk.

Young or old, male or female, I think that everyone is worth talking to at least once.

Purpose.

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When I attempt to think about purpose when it comes to life, I can surf the wave of thoughts until I come to the ultimate conclusion. That is that life as we know it will not last forever.

Eternity stretches wide in front of every being. We are aware that it exists, yet our comprehension of it is astonishingly low. We weren’t built to think about what happenings will occur hundreds, if not billions of years from now. Who am I to say what will become. The only thing I know for sure is that there is a time limit on things as simple as our human lives, to things as extraordinary as the death of the star we call our Sun. These things approach my thought process as I think about purpose.

Yet, purpose is what we make of it. The ultimate purpose of everything is unknowable. All we know is this moment, and in this moment we are alive. Every moment passes into the next moment seamlessly. All one can do is appreciate the time that one has, attending the minute particulars of all that is.

I’ve been tagged.

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The lovely babyknitter has tagged me with a series of questions, thus shaking me out of a 6 month hiatus from this blog. I just spent two hours and one coffee on this post. It was fun, and now I am inspired to write more. Thank you!

What conversation are you dreading MOST about having to have with your kid?

I don’t necessarily dread having any conversations with Lilah, but there are going to be a few that will be difficult. There are some topics that even as grown adults, we just don’t have answers for them. Death is one of those topics. How do you explain to a child that someone is gone forever? As an adult it is also difficult to comprehend that fully, but we feel the weight of it as we grieve. Where do people go when they die? Who knows. We will never know. I would be surprised if the answer is ever fully revealed, because to me it seems like one of those permanent mysteries. However, the idea of reincarnation is prevalent. It makes sense because our bodies are biodegradable and are nutrients for the earth to keep growing. Who is to say that consciousness isn’t also reincarnated in some way? Nature is very efficient at recycling everything.

The circle of life. And it moves us all. Thank you, Lion King.

What is your favorite holiday to spend with your kid and why?

Thanksgiving. I might end up gaining 10 pounds from food in one day, but I also gain 10 pounds of love from all of my family getting together under one roof. Lilah is also the center of attention during this event, and I love seeing people dote on her.

Thanksgiving 2012. Lilah going in for the kill.

Thanksgiving 2012. Lilah going in for the kill.

What food do you wish more than anything your kid would eat?

Lilah eats pretty much anything. She even loves broccoli. I have not run into this issue yet, but I will say that there are food items she probably shouldn’t like as much as she does: crackers and cookies. I have to spell out certain food words now, because if you say them out loud she will perk up and ask for them.

If you could go back to school for anything at all, A) would you want to, and B) what would you study?

Funny you ask, because I actually did go back to school last fall. I started going to college five years after graduating high school, and I am very glad that I decided to wait. Being a student again made me realize that I can do anything I set my mind to. I am currently going for a Bachelor of Arts degree, and I love the classes I have been taking so far. I do have a soft spot for my drawing classes. They are very challenging and I feel like my art has evolved a lot from them.

Intermediate Drawing class final. Based on the golden ratio/spiral.

Intermediate Drawing class final. Based on the golden ratio/spiral.

You have won a fabulous prize of a one week’s vacation to your dream destination – anywhere in the world.  The only catch is you have to go alone (no spouse/kids).  Where does your ticket take you and do you go?

This question is very difficult to answer, because there are a lot of places I would like to go. However, you mention the aspect that I have to go alone, so that would leave Japan and Amsterdam out of the question. I would have to say Peru. It would be scary to go alone, and I also don’t know the native language so that would also pose a challenge. That in and of itself would be a very beneficial learning experience. I pick Peru because of its history with the medicinal plant brew called ayahuasca.

PRYING OPEN MY THIRD EYE!!!!!

The ayahuasca being brewed.

You have 1 paragraph to describe your neighbors.  Do it.

I hardly know my neighbors. I live in a duplex, however, and the older couple that live next to us are our landlords. As far as I know, they are nice people, but they do not support the smoking of medicinal herbs.

Reefer madness was a lie. Let’s move on, people.

What do you do when someone gives you or your kid a Xmas gift that you just fundamentally HATE?

I open up the fireplace conveniently placed next to me, and chuck the gift into the fire while laughing maniacally! In all seriousness, I have never gotten a gift that I hate, and Lilah doesn’t seem to hate any of her gifts. I will mention for ‘reasons’ that I have no interest in receiving beauty products, *cough* bath sets *cough*, or watches.

If you could drastically make-over one thing about yourself, what would it be?  Answers do not have to be merely physical attributes.

Drastically make-over something about myself? Well, I’ve been a very shy person most of my life. Speaking to strangers used to be such a fear to me, but since I started going to college last fall I have come out of my shell a lot. I can now force myself to speak to people I don’t know without much hassle, and every time I feel a little tiny percent more comfortable too. In a way, I have already made over part of my personality, but I still worry too much what other people think of me to a degree. It isn’t paralyzing, but I still think about it. I hope that over time I can gain more confidence, and I feel like I can if I stay on this path. Having a few close friends helps a lot.

If you could bring back to life one dead famous person as an attempt to impact the world today, who would it be and why?

Terence McKenna. He isn’t exactly a household name, but he was helping make progress for the psychedelic community before he passed away in April 2000. What made him different from all the other people who were delving into the intricacies of the psychedelic experience, was that he was a very well spoken and eloquent with his words. He was obviously a very smart person with a lot of life experience that helped form his opinions. Some people thought he was a kook, but he was just willing to let his mind analyze all sorts of possibilities, leaving no stone unturned. He published several books on the subjects of psychedelics and promoted the theory of mushroom panspermia, the stoned ape theory (in a nutshell: humans evolved language and intelligence by consuming psilocybin mushrooms when foraging for food), and the novelty theory. I could go on about it more, but that should be for another post entirely. If he were still alive today, he would still be coming up with new and interesting ways of looking at reality, and would surely still be making headway for the psychedelic community. I realize how taboo that subject must be for a lot of people, but he was helping to eradicate the taboo status.

THE MACHINE ELVES ARE GIVING ME GIFTS! OMGUR!

Terence McKenna: November 1946 – April 2000.

What’s your dream superpower to have as a parent?

This doesn’t count as a superpower, but if anyone has seen the film The Dark Crystal they will probably remember how the skeksis had camera bat creatures flying around everywhere, keeping an eye on the gelflings during their journey to restore the dark crystal. If I had some sort of technology like that, I would use it to check up on my daughter when she is not with me. Creepiness factor while utilizing the bat droids? Hopefully not as high as the skeksis themselves…

HRRRRRRMMMMMMMM!!!!!

Skeksis must smell like rotting chicken dumped in vinegar.

What’s the strangest example you’ve personally experienced of “multi-tasking?”

I do have an answer for this one, and the answer is so TMI that I think people would cry from the mental image. I will give a hint, however. It involves keeping a newborn Lilah from crying… and me having to go to the bathroom… oh I have already said too much.

Reasons why this blog has been unloved.

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I just started my first semester of college, finally! 5 years after high school ended. (Learned a lot in those years, too. Things that can’t be taught by a professor.)

When not worried about getting homework done and studying for my two classes (which is basically only when Lilah is taking a nap or asleep), I am being a mom. (Of course, I am a mom all the time, anyway.)

Laziness! (Pure and simple.)

This blog may or may not be dead, but I am still alive!

Behold the cuteness.

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So, things have been slowing down as far as crafts and art goes. That blanket I started is a fourth of the way done, and rolled up on the bookshelf, patiently waiting for me to unroll it again. I also began doing awesome things in Photoshop with a picture I drew and scanned. It’s not being worked on as much as I would like, but at least it is progressing.

Because I have nothing particularly amazing to blog about, here is a cute baby picture…

these pants don't match my shirt!

Bacon and Eggs.

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Yesterday I finally decided to venture into the vast unknown that is the Netflix instant watch. I immediately stumbled my way into the Documentary section, adding them to the queue in abundance. I love to learn new things, and watching (or listening while knitting/crocheting/drawing) documentaries is one of my favorite ways to do that.

So to start out, I chose to watch a documentary entitled Fat Head. The image for the movie displayed reminded me a lot of Super Size Me, so I read the description and it sounded like a very interesting premise…

Fat Head

While most people saw the documentary Super Size Me as an exposĂ© of the fast food industry, comedian and former health writer Tom Naughton saw it as a dare: He’d show that you could lose weight on a diet of burgers and fries. In addition to chronicling Naughton’s weight drop, the film provides interviews with doctors, nutritionists and others to drive home his thesis that most of what we know about “healthy eating” is wrong.

-Netflix

Now, I watched Super Size Me years ago and really enjoyed it. It made absolute sense to me, and re-instilled my beliefs even more that fast food is a demonic presence. I did not question it, I just believed it.

After watching Fat Head, which very hilariously and wisely points out the flaws in Super Size Me, my eyes are more open now. Basically, fat is NOT bad for you, or something to be avoided. Starch, on the other hand, is horrible for you. Also, sugar (which everyone already pretty much knew).

The first part of Fat Head focuses on ways the film SuperSize Me stretched credibility or used questionable reasoning. Though the debate that the two films encapsulate will likely continue for a long time, Naughton employs transparency in his effort. An article in the Houston Chronicle reports: “Unlike Spurlock, Naughton has a page on his Web site that lists every item (including nutritional information) he ate during his fast-food month.”

The second part of the documentary focuses on the science and politics behind the nutrition recommendations given by the U.S. government – largely based on the lipid hypothesis which Fat Head claims is in error on all three of its main propositions.

The film claims that the lipid hypothesis has no basis in scientific fact. According to the film there has never been a single scientific study that has linked a high fat diet to increased rates of heart disease. During the film several doctors and dieticians were interviewed and they all stated that according to the latest research in heart disease it is inflammation (typically caused by high blood sugar) and not a diet high in saturated fat that causes heart disease and heart attacks.

– Wikipedia

What I really liked about this documentary is that they go into extreme detail in explaining everything, and doesn’t just tell you facts with nothing to back it up. It’s also done in a way that can be understood easily, without passing right over our heads.

I highly recommend watching Fat Head, and it can be watched on either Netflix instant watch, or on Hulu for free.

So I ate bacon and eggs with jalapenos for breakfast, and felt no guilt. It was good.

Ch-ch-changes!

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lilah in the sun

More than a few interesting and awesome things are happening to my baby, and it’s all part of her (sadly and happily) growing.

One tooth, a central incisor, is now obviously coming it. When I feel it with my finger, it’s very much like a scissor. I am a little nervous when I feed her, because she has been keen to bite down before she latches off. However, I am not going to let any amount of teeth stop me from continuing to breastfeed.

As for being able to get around on her own, Lilah can successfully scoot backwards until she bumps into something. She can also get on her hands and knees and rock back and forth. I am not sure how far away crawling would be at this point. It’s always possible that she will just skip crawling, but who knows?

As far as personality goes, my baby is certainly a screecher. My little pterodactyl loves to let out her crazy sounds anywhere and everywhere. Some people assume that she is doing this because she is upset, but she is certainly smiling and having a good time just testing and exploring her vocals. Also, she now goes “BA BA BA BA BA” over and over sometimes, and it’s so cute when she does.

I can’t wait to see how much she will change, and I bet I will be even more shocked by how quickly the changes occur.

Speaking of baby, I have completed some Lilah-oriented crafts recently…

toy hammock

A humble abode for her stuffed animals. I completely forgot about these hammocks until I came across this pattern. Then it all came rushing back, and I remembered how I had one of these in my room when I was little. I just HAD to crochet one! ^_^

wristlet

On the Raverly website I came across a pattern for baby wristwarmers. It was a pretty fast crochet project, taking only about 30 minutes. I put them on Lilah and they were the perfect size!

As for my next baby-oriented project, I was really thinking about crocheting a poncho!

Lilah’s first cold, unfortunately :(

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my daughter's beautiful smile :)

Finally! I have some me time, after setting Lilah down to sleep for the night… which is a task worthy of a master ninja. It is a task currently made more difficult by the fact that we are both sick! :O

It all started with last Thursday. All day I felt this slight scratchiness in my throat, but chalked it up to the fact that I hadn’t been drinking enough water that day. Also, the excitement of going to live with my sister for a while seemed to override how weird the scratchy throat thing seemed to be.

Friday… I woke up unable to speak. I had phlegm the color of spring trees when I coughed, and I noticed that Lilah had a slight cough too.

Saturday… my attempts at speaking end up with a joke about how I sound like a male cross dresser (thanks a lot, Dawn :P), and I started to get the super congestedness that colds are famous for. Lilah started to cough more and experience a constant rain of snot, which she hated to have wiped off. I even used the expensive Boogie Wipes, which are super soft.

Sunday… still hurt to talk, and the congestion got worse. I started to cough up a storm, spitting up little green pools throughout the day, which has an unfortunate taste. Lilah started to become even more fussy, which what seemed like a supercharged version of the constant snot rain bubbling out of her nose.

Monday… I noticed that my upper teeth began to hurt slightly. I thought that it was weird, and wondered if my new mom habit of forgetting to brush my teeth was catching up to me. Lilah was the same.

Tuesday… I was finally able to speak without sounding like a drag queen, was still coughing up a storm, but now my tooth ache was waaay worse. What the heck? I did the good ol’ internet medical search, and came up with this: sinus infection!

Now, at first I was scared. I have never had a sinus infection before. What was I supposed to do? I read that if I don’t take antibiotics, that something serious could happen. This just made me feel even more frightened, and naturally I was worried that Lilah had the same thing going on.

I called up my friend, Vernita, who is a wise mom of three grown up girls. I asked her if she had a sinus infection before, and how she dealt with it. She told me that she didn’t take antibiotics for it, but instead boiled water on the stove infused with oregano and thyme oils, and put a towel over her head, and proceeded to breathe in the pizza-like aromas. I had no idea that oregano and thyme were antibacterial.

Apparently this worked for Vernita, so I gave it a try. With some help from my sister, Lilah and I stood over a pot of water with real oregano and thyme boiling inside of it, and breathed in the vapors. It smelled amazing, and I enjoyed it for about 5 minutes tops, before becoming worried if Lilah was becoming too overheated.

I have yet to see if this method helped, but we are both still sick. Not terribly sick, but certainly getting better. I take Lilah in to the doctor tomorrow to see if there is anything more I can do to help her. Since Vicks Baby Rub, Infant Ibuprofen, the dreaded nasal bulb, and the Boogie Wipes don’t seem to be helping that much.