Wednesday, January 27, 2010

weblink wednesday! (no really)

OK, so... I really did write this yesterday (on a Wednesday). I was so proud of myself for A) knowing what day it was and B) writing a blog entry that corresponded with that day... and then Blogger decided to have some kind of hissy fit. I couldn't post or comment on anything for the rest of the day. Which means it is now Thursday. But Weblink Thursday just doesn't have the same ring to it so... Basically what I'm saying is THIS IS ALL BLOGGER'S FAULT.

Anyway... here's your Triple Threat edition of Weblink Wednesday.

1. I really really like the JayZ/Alicia Keys collaboration "Empire State of Mind". It's got that kind of beat that makes you feel like you MUST bob your head. Or rock from side to side. Something vaguely "gangsta", if you will. So anyway, I thought this video was one of the best parody/remakes I've ever seen on youtube- it's funny, well written and recorded, and mimics the original song almost perfectly. And it's about my home state!

2. Stephen, provider of oh-so-many of my links to the amazing and ridiculous wonders of the web, shared this with me. AWWWWWW babies making silly faces... I'll post it on Laine's behalf. :)

3. When I got pregnant, I had this vision in my mind of getting some kind of charm necklace with names or initials of each of my kids as I had them. I hadn't been able to find anything that wasn't too cutesy or cheesy until I found this website for The Vintage Pearl through another blog I follow. Now I just have to decide... round or square? And maybe a baby spoon? ...

Tuesday, January 26, 2010


When a real estate listing says "one bathroom restored to original retro look", what is really means is "the PINK tile on ALL of the walls AND the floor was in pretty decent shape (???) so I decided to leave it and just recover the tub". Which really means "sucks to be you, future homeowner who actually likes things from this decade/century".

Oh, and just because countertops and fixtures are "new" does NOT mean that whoever replaced the old ones has good taste.

Just FYI.

Monday, January 25, 2010


  • Laine has a new friend whom we have dubbed "Mr. Gerald" (who knows if that will stick once she can talk). I'd been trying to get her to bond with a "lovey"... or a moderately creepy blanket with an animal head on top of it. Definitely makes me feel all warm and lovey inside. But anyway, other moms I know swear by them as far as something to cuddle and comfort. But Laine had seemed totally unimpressed and uninterested by the 4 million loveys we have from all my baby showers... until Mr. Gerald. They seem to have bonded quite nicely.
  • The Challenge continues! I am sneaking up on the first goal (10 pounds) and feeling good. It was definitely difficult for me to change the way I shop and when/what I eat and what I crave and control portion sizes and yaddayaddayadda but now that it has been a few weeks I am feeling the difference and liking it. I've also gotten back into the gym for the first time, which felt great. I'm hoping to work something out so I can go while Joe is with the baby a few times a week.
  • Joe and I have made the big (HUGEENORMOUSGIGANTICMASSIVE) decision to look into buying a house.
  • We are going to buy a house.
  • We have to find a house that we both like and can afford. That has a yard.
  • Did I mention that stuff is happening about a house? But seriously, we realized that there really won't be a better time for us to buy than now, what with the buyer's market and the tax incentives and whatnot. We've done a lot of online shopping around and gone to see a few places and have 2 contenders so far. We're actually talking about putting in an offer on one of them... and that is when Joe starts to twitch and run around the house waving his arms around yelling "DEBT! DEBT! AHHHH!" and then collapse in a shaking little ball of anxiety. Or was that me?

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


I think I was doing something completely mundane like brushing my teeth or putting on socks when suddenly it dawned on me that being a mother was making me a better person. It wasn't until I was trying to explain this thought to Joe that I realized just how true it was and in how many ways.

Everyone says that as soon as you hold your baby you fall completely and totally in love in a way that you have never felt before. That wasn't really true for me. Of course I felt awe and pride at the life that Joe and I created together and a fierce protectiveness of her as well, but it wasn't for a few weeks that I felt like I knew her as a unique little person and could truly say that I had fallen in love with her. The first moment I held her, though, I fell more in love with her father. Hearing and sensing Joe's anxiety and amazement as he encouraged me through labor, seeing the joy and pride and wonder in his eyes as she was born, hearing him yell through tears that we "had a Laine" to our anxious families in the hallway, watching him follow her around the room as she was passed from grandparent to aunt to friend, feeling the new depth of feeling he had for me in those first embraces and kisses as new parents... it was an entirely new experience for me as his wife to see him as a father. The first few days and weeks at home, he was constant and fervent in his encouragement and words of love and admiration. While he took some time learning how to love and interact with the tiny new girl in his life, he could not have done more to make me feel beautiful and strong (stretch marks and all) in the moments when I was feeling anything but that.

Having Laine has also brought me even closer to my family. Even though I already considered my immediate family to be very tight knit and loving, I feel that Laine has fostered an even deeper connection between all of us. Seeing my parents as grandparents and my sisters as aunts gives me yet another reason to love and admire them. Sharing the joys and fears and anxiety and thrill of motherhood with my own mother is a greater joy than I had even anticipated. Seeing my father and youngest sister joyfully capture her every moment in photographs and glow with pride and love whenever they hold her brings tears to my eyes. And having the blessing of my middle sister in the same town with us has been both helpful and special.

Personally, I find myself making better use of my time so that I can experience every moment with her to the fullest while still feeling like I am a priority in my own life. Now that she has settled into a more predictable schedule, I push myself not to always nap or veg out when she's sleeping, but to make time to work-out and eat regularly and to take daily showers (a real feat some days...), clean up the house, or prepare choreography for work. Even at the studio I feel more confident in myself as a teacher, remembering to really enjoy even my most stressful classes knowing that I have this brief time to work toward a different goal before I return home. And then when I get home, rejuvenated from a change of pace, nothing is better than seeing my husband holding my daughter on his lap as the dogs jump up to greet me.

So I guess what Laine has shown me is that I can be a better mother to her when I work to better myself. I know it won't be the last lesson she teaches me.

Monday, January 11, 2010

work it, baby, work it

Adorable baby girl + new pink outfit with tulle + doting aunt* with mad skillz and an awesome camera = baby photo shoot!!!

This one is probably my favorite... check out that precious little dimple!

Little Miss Priss...

This is her Zoolander "Blue Steel" impersonation.

Who can resist a little baby bootie?

The extra band was given to me a few days after she was born... now I have a ring to symbolize our engagement, our marriage, and the beginning of our family. It makes me smile every time I look at it, but especially when it's grasped by a tiny hand!

*Thanks, Tricia!

Friday, January 8, 2010

new year, new stuff

Happy 2010, readers! I hope your holidays were as joyful as mine. Because they truly were. I don't know what it was about Christmas this year, but my entire family seemed infused with an awareness of how special and important it was for us all to be together for the holidays. We kept the drama to a minimum (which is a feat for my family, as it is, I'm sure, for most every family) and the photography at the max. Cell phones were put away (or left at home ON PURPOSE in the case of my youngest sister... which was truly a Christmas miracle in and of itself) and Wii remotes were kept out on the coffee table for spontaneous battles (see video documentation of these here and here). I found such joy in my family this year and therefore the holidays were made that much more joyful.

Now that the new year is here, new things begin. The first is, of course, that it was time for me to return to work. I faced the first day back (this past Tuesday) with a lot of ambivalence. While I was excited to be moving and dancing and teaching again free of my pregnant belly, I also felt that I was going back in as a very different person. Would I still be the same teacher? Would the kids have enjoyed their sub so much that they were apathetic about having me back? Would I be able to commit the time I needed to choreography and preparations now that my mornings are filled with feedings and diaper changes and it's difficult to even make time to shower some days? After the first week I think I can safely say that my worries were unfounded. Laine is falling into a more consistent schedule during the days and I have done well so far with using her nap time to my advantage. My kids were more excited to see me than I expected (nothing like squeals and hugs from your students to boost your ego) and are so eager to hear about the baby as well as to get back into a regular ballet class routine. And I find that the time away from the studio has actually made me even better in the classroom since now I am eager to be there... it's the perfect balance in my day to have all morning with my little one and then get to go do the other thing I love most in the world while she gets daddy time!

The other new thing in my life is the Greer VS Tricia Weight Loss Challenge 2010! Tricia (the aforementioned youngest sister) and I both decided that we have changes we want and need to make with our bodies and our habits and so have made ourselves accountable to each other in the way we Smith girls do best- competition! While we definitely have been giving each other a hard time ("first day back at work? very stressful... go eat a twinkie!" "aren't you tired? I bet some sugar would perk you right up!"), we are also really rooting for each other to succeed in meeting our goals and leading healthier lives. I am definitely ready to kick this baby weight to the curb. Grocery shopping now, however, is much more difficult that when I was in the (I'm pregnant and can eat whatever I want" phase. Spinach and protein shakes are much less exciting to shop for than Halloween candy and Little Debbie cakes.

Don't worry though, Trish. I have a fridge full of spinach.