Tuesday, January 31, 2006


My seemingly important life issues were brought into crystal clear perspective today when I caught an episode of the Oprah Winfrey Show documenting starving children in Africa. As I sat down to make a checklist for my son's birthday party this weekend, I watched gruesome images of children dying in a small village in South Niger. Their skin was literally peeling away as malnutrition destroyed their fragile bodies. This was not a plea for money or aid-- it was simply a reporter for CNN going into the deepest parts of Africa during what is known as "hungry season" -- the time between harvests when no food is available to many families.

Tears streaming down my face, I felt an overwhelming sense of guilt as I stared at the list in front of me. Just moments before turning on the show, I had been agonizing over how many different kinds of food to serve and the fact that I haven't been able to put up window treatments in many rooms since moving here and what the children attending the party would like for a "goody bag."

You know, it doesn't matter. My son will have a very nice 4th birthday. To him, the fact that friends and family will be in his house is enough to make him happy. Who cares if my house isn't perfect? Yes, there are stains on the carpet...a three-almost-four year old lives here. He doesn't just RESIDE here...he really LIVES in this house; thus, it is not perfect. And, no one actually expects it to be --except me. Well, that has changed.

My child has a roof over his head and food in his tummy (more than he should most of the time). He is loved beyond belief and wants for nothing. Those poor children in that documentary didn't have a chance. I have more blessings than I can count. It took less than a few seconds of watching that show to make me realize that.

Electric Blanket Moments

What is your electric blanket? By that, I mean what is the one thing that gives you a sense of warmth and peace...maybe even security? As I was putting my son's pajamas away this morning, I noticed that his electric blanket was still turned on. Without hesitation, I slipped into his bed and nestled down under a toasty heap of warm covers. As my bare feet defrosted and whispered to me a faint "thank you," I realized that we all have "electric blankets" in our life that provide us with a moment of peace.

Sometimes my "electric blanket" moments come in the form of catching my son as he dicovers something new or his giggle when he is truly happy. Sometimes it's in a song or the embrace of my husband when I'm feeling down. And, truthfully, it can be in a bowl of homemade vanilla ice cream, too. Electric blanket moments can happen anywhere at any time. And, sometimes it can not be a physical thing at all, but possibly just an unspoken understanding between two people.

Don't we all need "electric blanket" moments now and then? I think I'll go slip back under those covers for just a minute longer.....


The bird with the red head is most assuredly involved in the vast global plot to drive me INSANE. Peck, Peck...chirp, chirp....tap. tap. tap. As I write this, the incessant drum beat of beak against brass continues........

Monday, January 30, 2006

Dream a Little Dream...

It's no secret that I love to sing. I have been the recipient of numerous Shower Singing Awards--too many to recount here. Of course, since I'm the only one who heard those performances, the judging wasn't very complex. I sing in the car, sing my son to sleep and always have music on in the background. Even in silence, familiar tunes dance in my head like a private concert...played only for me.

I always wanted to be a "singer." Not a recording artist, mind you--just to be considered good enough to be on some stage somewhere, spotlight burning and belting out a song that would touch each audience member for one reason or another. To sing a song whose lyrics resonate so deep within me that I can't help but pour my heart into singing them.

Why this passion and fascination with all types of music? It's a mystery to me...all I know is that music inspires me, uplifts me, comforts me and transports me to places that I've been and can only visit again through a particular song.

For instance, the song "Calypso" by John Denver comes on and I am instantly 8 years old standing in my living room as my Mom dances around, arms spread wide open singing..."To sail on a dream on a crystal clear ocean, to ride on the crest of a wild raging storm...." I can see her there and, yes, it makes me sad because she is no longer with us, but it makes me happy to be there with her...if only for a moment. Likewise, when the Indigo Girls "Midnight Train to Georgia" comes on, I'm in a car with my husband and a coworker of mine as we race around the the winding roads of Lake Tahoe trying our best to catch our 10:00am flight (we missed it--but the ride and the singing sure was fun). Another favorite memory is my sister and I belting out a particular song in harmony on a chilly Thanksgiving Day. No matter where I am when I hear it, she and I are riding along in that car without a care in the world.

I may never stand on a stage and "wow" people with my singing skills (or lack thereof); but, my love of music goes much deeper than that. It is a longstanding love affair. I turn to music and let worries and stress and problems fade away...at least for a few minutes. Because, for those precious moments, I am somewhere else and sometimes somewhere else is not such a bad place to be...

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

My Little Man

Last night, we stumbled upon some old video footage of our son Daniel. We adopted Daniel from Russia in May 2004. This particular video was shot sometime that Fall. With our very verbal and animated almost 4-year old sitting in our lap, we watched a much younger baby on the screen doing his best to sing the words to "You Raise Me Up"--his favorite song. His little pudgy legs barely extending past the edge of his car seat, we stood amazed at just how far he has come in a short period of time. The baby-ish tone of his little voice was so sweet as he uttered phrases like "lub you mommy" and "wanna go ride in daddy's beep-beep."

Where did that little person go? Here in my lap sits a lanky child whose hair has turned from white to more golden tones and whose once round face has thinned into the profile of a young boy. The Wiggles and Barney have given way to more grown up movies like Polar Express while his language skills often resemble that of a teenager. "Hey Mom, when I get home from school, can I ride my Gator? Or is the yard still too wet from the rain? If it is, can we put on Dragon Tales and have a popsicle instead?" I can hardly get a word in.

This child had grown 9 1/2 inches since we brought him home as well as gained 11 pounds. He outgrew the carseat and is now in a booster and, when I pick him up out of the tub, his long, lean legs stretch so far it's getting hard to carry him.

I'm sure in just a year from now, we'll look back at just how small he is right now. But, that's hard to imagine. Time is flying by and, as each day passes, I realize what my Mom felt as she wrote a poem about my hand slipping out of hers as I left home to go to college. One day I'll be writing that poem with a tear in my eye...wondering where the time went as Daniel ventures out into the world on his own.

For now, I'll try not to take for granted each little moment with my little boy. The unsolicited hugs and kisses and the giggles as he runs naked from the bath down to his room. These are special moments. This is what parenthood is all about.

Oh how I love my little man.....

He's Back!

chirp. chirp. chirp. chirp. chirp. tap. tap. tap. tap. tap. chirp. tap. tap. scratch. tap. tap.

As I sit here working at my desk my little avian friend has returned and is doing his best (or her best??) to punch through my front door. It is both funny and maddening at the same time. I turn my music up but then it's hard to concentrate. Wait a minute. It's quiet.............

Nope, there it is again. Tap. tap. tap. chirp. squeek. peck. peck. peck. tap.


Tuesday, January 24, 2006

My Strange Little Visitor

For the past two days, I have a strange visitor at my home. A bird has decided that they have found a playmate in the reflection of the brass kickplate on my front door--themself! All day, I hear this pecking noise on the front door as well as this loud, incessant chirping sound. I open the door and it flies away. I finally snuck around front and caught the bird in the act...how does one rid such a pesky little visitor? Maybe I'll tape a picture of a cat out there and see what they do...heehee

Gorgeous Day!

The sky could not be bluer and the light breeze outside has made for a BEAUTIFUL day. Compared to the 47 degrees and cold rain we've had for this last week, it's glorious. Riding with the sunroof open in mid-January. Woo hoo!!!

Resolution, Smezolution

I am the first to admit the very idea of New year's resolutions excite me. "A new year, a new you..." Starting off at 01/01 with new life changes that will let me the best me I can be this year.

Yeah, I had a bunch of them this year. Let's see...keep my house straight, lose weight, exercise more, drink lots of water (blech!), no procrastinating and to be on time for everything! Oh, and to keep my resolutions this year. Yes, I actually added in a resolution to keep my resolutions. Not quite as funny as my sister making a list of her lists but it ranks right up there (sorry Jen if you're reading this!) :-)

Let's see, I HAVE exercised more and that is something I've been sticking to. Thanks to a couple faithful friends in my neighborhood, we do about 2.5 miles a few times a week. No, it's not a marathon distance but a girl's gotta start somewhere.

As for the rest, well I have yet to figure out why leaving to pick up my son at 12:28pm (when he gets out of school at 12:30pm) doesn't work when we live 20 miles away. Maybe I'll try to leave on time today. Resolution rebirth!

I guess for now I'll stop calling them resolutions (if anything to avoid being a statistic on the Today Show about poeple who have failed to keep their resolutions this year) and just try to do the best I can. See, I'm feeling better already!

Monday, January 23, 2006


The humming and drumming
A crowd of voices
Abuzz with gossip and ordinary

A cultural melting pot on display
Delighting every voyeuristic bone in my body

Teenaged girls huddle, preening in hushed whispers
Males too young to be men and too old to be boys
Strutting uncomfortably
Unable to find a rhythm or pace that suited them

Mothers and daughters gazing in windows
Young lovers stroll by as if on a cloud
A weary toddler on the verge of a tantrum
And the father whose hand he is
Refusing to hold

Bare midriffs and miniskirts
Walk alongside grandmotherly attire
Little old ladies with freshly styled permanents
And purses clutched tightly

The aroma in the air is exotic
Not the perfumed oils of the Orient
But fresh buttered popcorn
And hot-from-the-oven cinnamon buns

This place is a true slice of life
And, from the safety of my perch,
I feel removed from it all
But somewhere across the way
Sits another curious soul
Who is studying me as I entertain myself in this manner

And that person will go home and write a poem
In which they will describe
The quietly observant woman who was at the mall
On a Saturday night
Watching life pass her by….

~katiebod 1.7.06

My First Blog!

I have a blog. OK, so I will be one of maybe two or three people that will read it but, for a person who loves to write down random thoughts, this is heavenly.

For those who do stumble upon my meager little slice of the world wide web, I make a few promises:

* I will try not to end every other sentence in an exclamation point. A wise, and gramatically superior, friend of mine taught me the perils of over-exclamation years ago (you know who you are). See, I ended that with a nice little period. I am getting better. :-)

*I won't bore you with every single random thought that runs through my crazy brain. OK, well this one may be tougher to adhere to. I have lots of crazy thoughts.

*Last, but not least, I'll do my best to keep this site up-to-date. Motherhood, wifedom (or wife-dumb in some cases) and my job may prohibit me from blogging as much as I'd like but I will give it my best shot! (see, there I go with the exclamation points agian...)