Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween

Every day on the way to work, I pass a children's hospital. This morning, I happened to glance into one of its windows. Parted drapes revealed a little chapel--stained glass windows, a tiny altar, and several chairs lined up solemnly in a room no bigger than my office. Something about the sight of it just overwhelmed me. I literally had to stop and collect myself before I could keep walking. To ever have to beg for the things the parents there must pray for--it's too much to even imagine. So today I am working hard to be grateful for every good thing I have, but most especially for my healthy, growing, amazing kids. I am going to dress them up in silly costumes and stuff their little bellies full of candy and be thankful for every single second of it.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Happy Birthday, Maddie Q

Even in the first minutes of her brand new life, Madeline was completely and totally aware. The eyes looking up at me from that tightly-swaddled hospital blanket were sizing me up. She was, as they say, born ready. Four years later, and she continues to astound and delight me with the intensity of her intelligence, her will, her humor, and her charm. Some days with her are a challenge, others a delight--but every single one has been a blessing. My baby is a force in every way. Don’t let the beautiful blond curls and sweet, cherubic face fool you. Underneath, there’s a girl who knows what she wants. And, quite frankly, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Happy birthday, precious Budgie Bird.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Happy Birthday, Cheeks

Day after tomorrow, my baby will be one year old. It’s almost impossible to believe that a year ago, I was huge and miserable and achy. More impossible yet, the thought that, during those last heavy days of pregnancy, one single, crazy worry consumed me: Would I be able to love this kid? It sounds wicked to say it now, but I spent the better part of 40 weeks worried that I made a mistake. How would I have the time and the heart and the energy left in my life to love another kid as much as I adore Madeline? It didn’t seem possible, and I truly felt, in my secret heart, less glad than nervous, less excited than scared, even on that final bumpy ride to the hospital.

And then he was born.

How can words express how wrong I was? That I loved him instantly and completely is, of course, the truth—but perhaps a simplified version of the truth. Because how could I predict, on that very first day, that he would grow to become this happy, unflappable little guy that knows no stranger and never stops smiling? I didn’t guess then that he would blossom into a child who stops what he is doing to crawl into my lap for a kiss, or to lay his head on my shoulder for a long, delicious minute. I couldn’t know that he would be this easy, loving kid who lets himself be carried along on every kind of adventure, who delights in whatever crazy game his sister invents, even if it ends with him being covered in pillows or closed up in a cardboard box. On that first day, I loved him as fully as I believed I could love anyone—yet, somehow, today, I love him a millionfold more.

Sunday marks the first of many birthdays for my Sammy. I’ll try not to think of it as the end of his babyhood, but instead as the beginning of another year, another 365 days to watch as he reveals his true, amazing self to the world.

Happy birthday, my beautiful baby.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Top Ten Reasons L.A. is (Hands Down) Better Than N.Y.C.

1. The weather. Duh.

2. In ‘N Out. Great burgers, floors so clean you can eat off ‘em. McDonald’s, it ain’t. See also: Mexican food, See’s candy, Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf.

3. Three airline workers cheerfully offered to help us find our lost car seat at baggage claim. That’s right—I said offered. Cheerfully. Try getting that at Newark.

4. You can buy wine and beer right in the grocery store. Novel concept.

5. A man driving toward me in a crowded parking lot stopped, gestured to let me ahead of him, and smiled. For no reason.

6. The beach, right there, any time of day or night, for free. It’s an instant vacation for the 50 cent parking fee. Watching the sun set over the Pacific will cure whatever ails you.

7. The weather. I know it’s also #1, but a climate that perfect deserves more than a single mention. How can you not feel happy when it’s 65 and sunny every friggin’ day of the year?!

8. The lunatics. Even the bums in California are happy.

9. KROQ radio.

10. My friends. Every last one of them. You will never feel eighteen again as easily as you do when you’re with the people who knew you then.

Thursday, February 21, 2008


Sam is quite a little man these days. He crawls, he claps, he rocks out on the drums. He's going to be quite a lady killer.