Tuesday, December 28, 2010

New Years is almost here. A time for reflecting on the past year- the challenges, the hopes, the success's. It is also a time to move forward- hence, I believe, why many of us make New Years resolutions.
I think it is a good time to make some personal resolutions as well. I'm not talking about "I will lose 15 pounds by March" kinda resolutions. I am talking about some personal, for yourself, resolutions to make yourself happy in 2011. It could be to forgive so and so for doing such and such. It could be making an effort to say hi with a smile to a few strangers a week. It should be an attainable goal, or resolution. And you will benefit not only in your moods, but in your health!
This past year I have been doing lots of personal housekeeping- letting go of people that have been userous, negative people, and focused on those that make me happy, or make me feel good by simply being in their company. I have also made some good friends. I will continue this "movement" (!) into 2011!
I will also start thinking that 2011 will be a wonderful, prosperous year, so that it will in fact become a wonderful, prosperous year! I was taught that energy follows thought, so I am being very mindful of what I will be thinking in the new year. It has actually been proven that crime rates have dropped in areas where people meditate and put out good energy!
So that is a good resolution for all of us- to think positively about the new year, and not to harbor any negative thoughts. Let's take charge of our own happiness by making OURSELVES happy, relying on ourselves for happiness, and to put out good, thoughtful energy! We are the captains of our own ships, so be mindful of where YOU steer it!
Come on 2011! I welcome you!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Well, the gifts have all been opened, the laughter and love shared, and the realization that I am one truly blessed human being is in my thoughts.
To all my family and friends (isn't that all the same?), I want to thank you for being in my life! I love you all!
And thank you to a very special person that has opened me up to loving again-

Thursday, December 23, 2010

The cookies are fresh out of the oven, we watched "Polar Express", and there is the anticipation of Santa Claus coming. Yes, it feels like Christmas!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Six days 'till Christmas!

Six days till Christmas... WOW!
Five nights from now kids all over the world, kids that celebrate Christmas, will be anxiously awaiting "The Big Day". I remember the first Christmas in our new home in Milwaukee when I was about 5. It was our second Christmas after moving to the Midwest from Connecticut. We always celebrated on Christmas Eve. Our home was tiny- two bedrooms, one bath, six kids and one mom- and it was HEAVEN! The image of that Christmas was seared into my head- my mom and oldest brother where in the living room helping Santa (actually doing all the work!) and the rest of us were in the kitchen, mostly unable to hold our excitement back- SANTA IS HERE! SANTA IS HERE! Well, we heard mom say bye to Santa, and the door opened up, and- WOW! The Christmas Tree was lit, and there were so many presents under the tree! That was the year I got my orange roll up sled I used for years- I believed it made me go faster down the hills than any other kid- and even if I didn't end up first, I didn't care! It was the most magical Christmas I can remember- mom always made it so special for all of us, and how she did it I have no clue.
In our home now, we usually celebrate Christmas morning. I know how difficult it can be for a single parent this time of year- you want the best for your child. I know a parents love for a child may put your emotions over the top with what to do/buy, but remember this- that very special Christmas night long ago was followed by my mom putting us all to bed- and telling us Merry Christmas and she loves us- and that made for a very good night sleep. Yep, the perfect way to end that day- with love.
So, hold your kids tight, tell them how much you love them, and send them off to slumber thinking they are the most special kids in the world. I still remember that, 37 years later.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Fill your life with love today- let it get into every corner, every cell of your being, and watch beauty unfold.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Ho ho Holidays!

It's a great time of year!
This Christmas I am looking forward to with such joyful anticipation!
It's been awhile since I could really say that, and it feels good! I have no negativity this year like the past two, and let me tell you, that is reason enough to celebrate!
So, of course there is the usual stresses: presents to buy, busy schedule, etc. etc., but when you are surrounded by loving, good people that have your best interest in mind, that is such a joy! And a relief!
My sister from Vermont will be coming to visit Olivia and I- it will be the first time she will see my home. My mom and sister from Wisconsin will be coming, too! So much love in one little house! And my little home is becoming quite festive- garland on the light fixture, Christmas tree (the cats didn't knock it over yet!) that will have ornaments on it, both new and old, and the usual Christmas smells- indeed a time to celebrate!
So when you are going about your busy lives, think about your holiday, too- and make it the best one in years! I know it will be mine!

Friday, November 19, 2010


Well, next week is Thanksgiving!
Have you thought about what you are thankful for? I have- I try to focus on my blessings, what I am thankful for, on a weekly basis. So, what am I thankful for this season?
I am thankful for my family, both biological and friends. I am truly thankful for my daughter. I am thankful that after over two years, my ex and I are getting along great. I am thankful that this season is going to be stress free: no worrying, no trying to make everybody happy and be told its not enough. I am thankful for my pets, the spirits of my home. I am thankful to be for the most part living a comfortable life- sure, things get tight from time to time. I am thankful for my home. I am thankful for great neighbors, neighbors who I know their names, their kids names, even their pets names! I'm sure if I sat here long enough, I could fill up pages with my thanks!
And if you are reading this, I am thankful, as you are probably my friend!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

It happened. Slowly, over the past week and a half, Christmas has been sloowly prying its way into 2010. Some would say,"SLOWLY? Are you kidding? Haven't you been to _______ or _______ yet?!" I would say, oh sure, I've been there, seen the plastic Christmas trees on sale, the colored lights, etc. etc. But for me, I have always been one to stave off "the season" till after Thanksgiving. I like giving Thanksgiving its whole day!

But this year, I am hearing Christmas music on the radio. I was in Michigan this past weekend, and saw a truck full of tied up firs making its way to the city.I went to the local market, and bought three firs, two for my planters, and the extra I will be giving to my neighbor. Olivia bought an ornament and some paper heart sunglasses. On the way home to Chicago, I mentioned how it smells like Christmas in the car. Olivia said Christmas doesn't have a smell. I said, Christmas to me is the smell of Christmas trees in your living room, and cinnamon sticks and cloves boiling in water coming from the kitchen (like mom used to do, and what I do now), scented candles and pine cones.

And I saw the geese flying south- a sure sign of winter around the corner. I've been listening to mother nature- I've been on the planet for nearly 42 full changes of the seasons, so I know what to listen for... and it all says winter is coming- for those of us that celebrate Christianity, Christmas. Christmas is coming.

Monday, November 1, 2010

... and after a busy week, full of laughter and fun, silence.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

H a double l o, w, double e n, spells halloween!

Halloween. It has always been one of my favorite holidays, right after Thanksgiving.
This year was special- it was the first time Olivia actually got it, that it is all about fun and candy, and how much of both you can have! We went trick or treating with our neighbors again, which is actually quite fun. One kid was the Grim Reaper, another Elmo, and Olivia was a white princess with red hair (courtesy of her "Little Mermaid" costume that she opted out of last minute).
A few days ago she starting telling me the ins and outs of how to successfully trick or treat. She said, first, you go up to a house. Then, you ring the doorbell or knock if they don't have a door bell to ring, then, you say "TRICK OR TREAT" loudly. "You know what trick or treat means, papa? ""No", I respond. "Please tell me." "It means, GIVE ME SOME CANDY!" A huge laugh from me, which made her mad, which meant I spent the next ten minutes trying to tell her I wasn't laughing at her, but with her. She ended up forgiving me, and all was good.
Our candles were lit, the skeleton was aglow, and it was nice and comfy in our home while she sat on the sofa happily munching on some sweets while watching a halloween special. It was another successful Halloween!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Read previous post first, please!

I was on the phone with my daughter this morning, asking her the usual things, when I said thank you again for the love letters. She giggled,and said, "papa, who else gave you love letters?" And my response was you, Olivia! Then I started thinking, when was the last time I got a love letter? I really couldn't remember, which kind of through me a bit. After going over my memory, I realized I was 22 or 23 from my partner at the time. I have been in two relationships since. Wow. When was the last time you got a love letter, or better yet, wrote one to someone you love? Wouldn't that be the best thing to do or receive? Next time I am in love with a partner, I promise to write love letters. How about you?

Thursday, October 21, 2010

The gift.

Today I received the most precious gift, a gift that is so sweet, so beautiful, that made me realize how wonderful a life I have. The gifts came from my daughter. She had a big smile on her face when she handed them to me- three hand drawn pictures of herself that she said were love notes- for me! One picture she had two pony tails- one, curled hair, and the other her hair was down, and surrounding these images were hearts. My favorite was a picture of her in orange, her hair down, arms outstretched, her name written on the top left, and two orange hearts. I loved receiving them! I gave her a big hug and kiss and told her that was such a wonderful gift- and that I will hang them on the refrigerator (where all the good art work goes, before it gets wall space!).
Such a simple gift. Such a beautiful little girl. I am the luckiest papa alive!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Something happens. New feelings stir, some that were thought to be gone forever. A renewed sense of hope. A sign of an awakening. A happy future? Not all things last forever, both big and small, happy or sad, together or alone. It is a cycle. One that changes, one that has a start and a beginning as well as an end- a circle. There is something stirring. A new circle is about to begin.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Contemplating. I seem to be doing a lot of that lately.
I am trying to discern what it is that is important to me. Some are easy: my family, both in my home and siblings; my work, I enjoy it; my friends. When I am at peace, I know that I am totally blessed.
The other stuff is a bit meatier. What is it that I really want in a friendship/dating/relationship? A few months ago, that was very easy answer, but now it is getting harder for me and I am struggling a bit to figure it out. I enjoy dating, I do. I have been asked out a bit lately, and have been saying no, to which surprises me as well, because isn't that what I want? Isn't dating a means to finding someone I am compatible with? Is it because I think I know what/ who I want and it isn't happening? Do I really need to be the old Patrick and see things to its end before I can move forward again? Who knows, I sure don't. I really wish I had the answers to my questions.
My good sounding boards, the friends I hold closest, are a bit harder to talk to lately. One has moved, and the other travels weekly on business trips that keep him away from home. These are the people who see through my b.s. and give me a very healthy dose of reality, and tell me what they think, based on our history together. These are the people I love whole heartedly and have been sounding boards for them, too.
These are the things I really need to be figuring out on my own. I have always been confident, know what I want, and usually was pretty good at getting what I need. I need to make my own decisions, for the goal of being happy, and for finding what has become quite elusive to me-love.

Sunday, October 3, 2010


I went to one of my employees weddings this past weekend, with my daughter as my date.
The room had an upstairs, which was glassed in, as if to remain separated from the first floor, but visually not apart.
At one point in the day I was upstairs watching over the kids play, and I looked out from above the party goers below. The groom and bride looked absolutely happy as they danced with each other and their guests. Another couple was holding each other closely, looking lovingly into one another's eyes, while another girl was trying to stave off the advances of an alcohol induced boyfriend.
All this happiness. All this love. I looked back at my daughter, who was playing hide-n-seek with a two year old, and looked out again. This is what I want for myself someday. To be coupled, surrounded by love.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Love... what is it? Why do we want it? To what ends do some of us go to to find it? Why is it that sometimes it is right in front of our faces, and we don't see it?
I thought my first boyfriend was it. He was cute, successful at what he did, and happy. People loved him for his humor more than anything else. We loved each other for about a year and a half or so. When we broke up, we didn't talk much. I ended up moving to Chicago. We lost track of each other, especially when my younger brother, who was a friend of his as well, moved. When I heard of his death from an accidental overdose, I was shocked. How could someone who was so full of life, of fun, ever leave the earth is such a manner? The pain was excruciating, and he tried to make it go away. I wish I had kept in touch with him- he always made me laugh, always told me how good of a person I was.
Soon after I moved to Chicago, I fell in love with my first Chicago man. Very talented. A good person. We shared three homes together in as many years. I have kept in touch with him, and he is now a confidant, someone who I can tell anything to, and he'll give me the right answer, even if I don't want to hear it.
Then came the man who helped me build my career, build a dream, have a family with. In many ways, during this time is when I grew the most. Though he may not have agreed with all my choices, he let me do them- meditation, esoteric healing work. When we broke up, we went to hell and back, then back to hell and back. Now we are in the "and back" stage, and I hope with all my heart it stays that way. We have a child together. He will always be present in my life for that reason alone, but being able to communicate without the screaming, tears, and old anger is a good thing. It won't be overnight, but it is on the mend.
I can't really say about the last relationship. In many ways I am still processing it. I'm not sure if anything, even a friendship, could be salvaged from that, as so many things were said to me that were just wrong and spoken out of anger/fear/frustration.
So back to my first few sentences... what is it? If we hurt so much when it leaves or ends, why do we continue to look for it?
My answer? Because it feels so good to have love in your life. That's why we do what we do, search for it all over the place, and relish it when we have it. Love. One of my favorite four letter words!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

I do a lot of thinking while I clean, especially when I vacuum for some weird reason.
I realized, as I was vacuuming up a compilation of cat and dog hair, how lucky I am. I feel lucky, because I want what I have.
That is a great place to be!

Monday, September 20, 2010

It's Monday. Either the happiest day of the week for me, or the saddest. It all depends on if my beautiful daughter is coming to stay with me for the week, or going to her other papa's house for the week.
And the Mondays she goes to her other papas, I tend to get emotional. It doesn't help I have a sinus infection with allergies. Double whammy. I hear things I normally wouldn't pay attention to. Like tonight while shopping for the ingredients for my chicken soup, or as one of my ex's says, "Pilgrim Soup", I kept on hearing kids refer to their dads as Papa. That is what Olivia calls me. Papa. I kept on looking up and around, half expecting her to come running up to me and ask if I could pick her up!
Heaven FORBID I even start thinking about relationships, who I like, who I could love, who I have loved, why they didn't work, could they have worked? Do I even need a "relationship" now? I love my life, but Mother Nature thinks I should have a partner, and she says "two by two, that's what you have to do". Will someone bitch slap her! A very good friend of mine says love fiercely.
I have. I am a huge advocate of that. But to whom do you give yourself to? Who do you trust with your being? Especially now for me, when I have to put so much effort into simply dating? Sometimes I absolutely just want to say no to Mother Nature, and just date and have fun. That has worked o.k. for me. Met some really good people. But when does it start turning from thoughts of dating to thoughts of "something more"?
I have promised my good friend I will love fiercely again one day. That I will. I promise!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

The earth yawned. And in it's first inhale, it took the heat with it, and exhaled cool air. Yes, it is a reminder that summer is going to be a memory soon. We will be digging out our fall sweaters, pants, boots- making soups, heavier foods to keep us warm.
Some of us will be decorating our homes for Halloweeen and Thanksgiving this fall. Others will be decorating their apartments. We will all be preparing for the colder months ahead.
I will be enjoying these crisper mornings, taking walks with my daughter, kicking up leaves, talking about when the first snow will fall and how many snow people we'll make. One morning soon we'll wake up, walk outside, and see our breath.
But until the earth takes its' yearly slumber, I'll be enjoying the days leading up to winter.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Bring your daughter to work day

Today was an unofficial "bring your daughter to work day", designated by ME!
It was so much fun! My little O helped me mix colors, picked some out for herself when she turns 16 (I want violet red violet under her, don't cover up the blond pieces {she has blonde pieces? Really?!}, and bright pink bangs!), she wanted to sweep, was the greeter, and good lunch eater!
I think the best part of the day was talking about how I was going to cut her bangs. I asked wasn't she going to grow them out long? She responded that this was the plan all along- grow them out so far and then cut them off! I have to say, after much deliberation, we did it! I cut them while the rest of her hair was braided in two long braids, and she looks sooo cute! We had a blast, and she couldn't stop looking at them (or herself!) in the mirror!
We both enjoyed ourselves, and it was officially on of my best "unofficial bring your daughter to work day" ever!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Yesterday started out as kinda a crazy day!
As I was getting ready, I got a phone call from a business owner on our street saying we had a broken window. I made a phone call to my business partner, who I couldn't reach, then called one of our receptionists, who said she could do it, and in the meantime got a call back from business partner, which made me call our fab receptionista back to tell her not to come, which ended up making me late for work! Traffic of coarse was horrendous (I mean why wouldn't it be? I was late! Traffic always waits for you when you need to be some place in a hurry!), and I knew my darling O had a pediatrician appointment. ARGH!!!
So, on the way to work got a call saying we needed coffee (I start to feel the blood boil) and probably a Costco run (didn't I, just last week, ask for a list?), and on top of all that, I said a friend could borrow my car because I had no place to go in the morning!
It was just one of those mornings you want to rewind and start over again!
But, like usual, when things aren't going according to plan, you be patient and wait it out.
We got home. I made dinner. I feel everything returning to normal. Well, my normal at least! Then the doorbell rings- it is one of O's little friends asking if she could play. Of coarse! I sit on my front steps- I forgot how much I like just sitting on those steps- and watch the play. Then more kids! Now they are playing "telephone". Then O tells everyone about the yogurt coolisions I bought her- so, I have to get everyone a yogurt coolision! Satisfied, they play more. Then I talk to neighbors. We have to be in by 8, as the city is spraying for mosquitos. Talk on neighbors porch... then we have to go in.
We watch a cartoon, then off to bed. O can't sleep (too much fun, probably!), so she comes into my room. She talks about her day, as she yawns, and falls asleep on my chest. And the dog fell asleep on my legs. It turned out to be a great day after all!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


Reconnecting. It is such a funny word to me. I am one who sometimes takes a word and deconstructs it. Reconnecting. Once you were connected. Then you weren't. Then you were again! Reconnected!
I have recently "reconnected" with a friend from high school, and honestly, it is great! I love family stories. I remember what we were both doing before I moved, what was happening with the dynamics of her family, mine. Then a span of over 20 years! Pick up the beat again, find out how many kids we have, how our siblings are doing- amazing. So much can happen in the expanse of 20(ish) years!
It's also amazing how if you are quiet and settle your mind down, how much you can actually remember. The good,the bad, the hard to remember but you do anyway, maybe because of emotion or self realization. But you do just that. You turn that key in that specific part of your brain, and open the door. What comes out is what you put in. You re:member. Re:count. Your history.
Your life, friends lives, where you were mentally and where. The capacity for all re: things are great.
Do it. Settle down. Think of a person or, maybe, a place... re:member. Re:count; re:connect.

Friday, August 20, 2010

A friend once asked me what it is like being a single parent these days. I said though it has its challenges, I am happy being a parent. And raising a child in a happy single household is better than a coupled unhappy household. Yes, I may not be in as good of shape as I once was, when I had the time (and energy!) to go to the gym and lift weights and run miles on the track. But I still wouldn't exchange a perfect body for that of being a papa!
As a single parent, you really learn how to make the most of your free (free?) time. You shop in the 20 minutes you have before you have to pick her up from school. In the 10 minutes you have before you know she'll wake up, you take a quick shower.
But nothing, nothing compares to the joy of experiences you can have with your child. Especially us. I take time to explain things to the best of my ability, even if it means we'll be late for something. I would rather see her happy going to school in an outfit she picked out than one I know she'll look better in that I picked out.
And knowing that she will one day grow up and move out, makes all these experiences so rich for me. They are all safely bubble wrapped and tucked away in my heart. Who knows? I may pull one out someday for one of her kids to enjoy.
That's if I feel like sharing!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Well, it's been awhile since my last entry, no particular reason why, other than I have been busy figuring things out. And for those who know me, they know I can be quiet while I think things over.
One thing I know is that I am a good person. I usually put others first, do for them sometimes when I need to do for myself or my family first.
Another is I am so ready to start dating seriously. I have so many things I want to do, and most would be enjoyed so much more with a partner. I know the next man I give my heart to will be patient, loving, kind, and have a good soul. I misspelled good as god at first, my fingers flying over the key pad, and I guess I would welcome a "God soul" as well! I know he's out there, and all I have to do is be patient and open to opportunities.
And as always, I have the best daughter one could ever hope for, not that I had to figure that one out! She is becoming such an independent thinker. I marvel listening to her, watch her... I hope her life is always full of love and opportunity. Whatever she chooses for herself, I will be behind her cheering her on.
Love and light~

Monday, July 26, 2010

Well, I've been back from my family trip to Vermont. It was a fun time!
It was so wonderful to watch Olivia enjoy the same things I did as a child- Buttermilk Falls, climbing parts of Okemo Mountain, talking on the deck, and most importantly, spending good family time together! We also went kayaking, and she even helped out several times paddling (well, if you call paddling only on one side of the kayak while papa uses his hands to help propel!). My dad pointed out the pink water lilies, and we got in for a close look. My dad says they are more rare than the yellow and white ones. I have to say, they were beautiful! And, since pink is someone specials favorite color, they were her favorite, too!
I have two images in particular stuck in my head, one of those freeze frame moments you will always remember: one, Olivia running as fast as she can down the lane by my sisters house, hair loosely put in a braid and her pink ballerina skirt flying!; second,and maybe the most precious, is Olivia in her new fairy dress that Aunty Kitty bought her leading the way up the mountain. I am quite positive that she is the only girl to climb a mountain in a fairy dress. Her back was to me, and just the way she moved as she was going, her hair, the lighting, and the sheer beauty of the mountain, singed the image in my brain for me to recall to her when she is older.
So yes, I am back, and really, happy to have more fond memories of my family. I am also happy to be home.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Change is in the air

Change is definitely in the air.
Some great, some not so great, but all good. After all, change is how we as humans grow.
Change for me is I am starting, once again, a renewed awakening of spirituality. I have to. Why? It helps me see things in a much different light. It helps me along my path of growth. I am choosing the path of using my head and not my emotional self. In healing, that is I am using my crown chakra and not my solar plexus chakra.
There are things changing in my salon- all will be good.
And I will be opening up myself for changes in my life as they unfold.
I release all the obstacles that are hindering my path, my growth, for they are just that- obstacles, just things in the way. Remove the things in your way and you can attain your goals, your path, your growth, your true self.
I am choosing the right path.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Welcome to the jungle!!

Sometimes I wonder what people would think if they came to my home. Would they think, "Jesus, some crasy a-- person lives here!" Or, "oh, this guy loves animals" or "all the artwork on the walls are originals". I think it would totally depend on when I would get visitors! You see, I do love animals and art, and as we all know, I L-O-V-E LOVE my daughter! So, if someone would to come mid week, and the pets are inside, this is what would happen: DING DONG, WOOF WOOF WOOOF WOOOOOF WOOOOOOF! ASPEN, BE QUIET! GRAB THE CAT, MAKE SURE SHE DOESN"T GET OUT! Oh, hi!" Followed by "Oh, it isn't always this crazy (yeah, right, I would be thinking to myself)" Don't mind the hairballs, let me wipe off a part of the sofa for you to sit down on, and do you want something to drink? Papa, Aspen just kissed me with his tongue! No, Aspen, NO! It's alright, Olivia, you won't get germs from his kiss. He is just saying he loves you! But I don't want him to kiss me! His breathe is stinky! Then I would get you a drink, and wish I had one, like a glass of wine!
So, lets say someone visits me on, lets say, Tuesday of the following week, and I knew you were coming over. "DING DONG. (insert quitude here, cuz the dogs are out in the back yard getting into trouble, no doubt!). I answer the door, probably holding Olivia's cat, "HI!" You'll notice that I cleaned, smells good, man, Patrick really has it together. "Come on in!"
I have to say, I was raised in a household of 6 kids, and loved every moment of it! We had all kinds of pets of one kind or another (thanks, mom, for not "accidently" letting any go!), from snakes to rabbits and cats and dogs and birds. I had to wait for my mom to be at work before I would let my parakeet, Toby, out for some "exersize", because my mom had/has a fear, no, a phobia, of flying birds. She also doesn't like little animals with beady eyes... ANYWAY, what I am trying to say by taking the scenic route, is that I wouldn't have it any other way! I love the so many things going on at once, it is something I have grown up with. When Olivia is gone, it gets quiet... sooo quiet that I check and make sure she isn't playing in her room... it is almost like phantom limb syndrome, but with a child. Phantom Child Syndrome? Does that even exist?
So, this week I will clean, get ready for our road trip out East (something we did as children, and something Olivia is going to do for the first time), and rejoice in all things crazy and quiet, for this is my life.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Happiness is...

To each and every one of us, happiness is something different.
It may be getting a phone call from an old friend. It may be sitting around your living room at the end of the day, toys/ clothes everywhere, completely exhausted, but realizing everything you've ever wanted you have- a home, a child. Or it may be a lick from your favorite pet- whatever!
I think it is really important to realize your happiness, find it if you have to, and cherish it.
For me, happiness is one of the above especially- the happiness I feel when I am near my daughter, especially in our home.
For her, I am pretty sure it is holding and singing (oh, I love when she sings!) lullabies to her kitten.
So, finish your own sentence- Happiness is _____________ .

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

It's been about a week since we've been home from vacation, and I have settled back in to the daily happenings of all that is Papa Patrick. The first week back I got pretty sick, but am back to my normal (!) for a few days now.
One thing I have been struggling with lately is coming to terms with someone that brought up that old stuff you thought you moved through but realized you haven't moved through. Like, if I were an octopus, I would have squirted that dye stuff they squirt all over his face. Or, I would have got all orangutan on his as_ if I were an orangutan. When it happened, I just shook my head, realized that some people will never change, and after a few hours of letting it sink in, let it go. I think that is my coping mechanism- think, wrap my brain around a story, situation, thing- and let go. Later tonight I got an apology call, I shrugged it off, said sure.
There are so many other positive things going on in my life, I choose to let it go. I can let things get to me- that is also my nature. But I need to stay focused, positive, and forgiving. Like I do. Like I always have. That makes me who I am.
So, if someone/ something has been bothering you, make it a point to let it go. Forgive. Learn something from it if you don't want to forget about it. It will set you free.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Well, we are back from our trip, and it was fun! It was good for me to reconnect with some good people I haven't seen in awhile.
Olivia learned how to swim under water with her nose closed! I am so proud of her! It was cute seeing her kick underwater while holding onto her nose. The sense of accomplishment and pride on her face when she came up for air was priceless!
It is good to be home though- back to my own bed, pets, life. But I am thankful for the rest.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Learning how to swim

Over the past two years, I have been trying to teach my daughter how to swim. Last year it was the kiddie pool, where she only got the bottom of her pony tail wet. We also tried in the bath tub how to hold your breath under water. Well, she didn't like the feel of that, either.
This year, on a trip to Miami, there was a 0 degree entry pool, with the deepest point about a half a head deeper than Olivia was tall. I wanted to try again, so I came up with two rules: 1. Don't panic in the water. 2. Don't breathe under water, because we aren't mermaids. We tried and tried, and finally she went under! She was so proud of herself, and I was, too! She actually went underwater all by herself, and couldn't wait to tell people.
Next week we go to Mexico. I'll let you know how my little fish did!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010


Ever since I came back from my trip out east for my nephew and God-sons 1st communion, not a day goes by without me thinking of how lucky I am to be a part of my family! Through all my siblings marriages,divorces, family ups and downs, we always are there for each other. In bad times, we become a shoulder to cry on, an open ear; in good times, we exalt in the happiness, and laugh easily.
We try to make a get together at least once a year, and some of us are better than it than others, but we try. This year, all six of us will converge in a small town in Vermont, a town where we were raised during summer breaks. We will be joined with our children, our spouses or partners, and just have a family time! I am fortunate that both my parents are alive and well. There will be at times when my sibs and I will revert to being kids! We'll reminisce, tell stupid stories about each other and laugh about it, and just be happy. We will talk into the night on dads back porch. Hopefully we can go fishing! I would also love to show my daughter the mountain that I used to play on when I was a kid, a mountain since 1976 my family has been a part of. The old ranger station; the reservoir; the beautiful trees... the same mountain that one can see from my dads back porch. For the kids to see. For us to see again. To reconnect.
Yes, I am fortunate indeed.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

It has been four years this weekend since my little bundle of happiness was born! On reflecting, she has been the best thing to ever happen to me. She has taught me a lot about myself: I CAN survive on broken sleep and function; I can nurture, grow, help guide, and love another human being; I can handle projectile vomiting and not puke myself.
But seriously, when we celebrate her birth this weekend,I am going to celebrate everything about her self. Her eyes, her hair, her soft (though at times, quite loud!) voice, her skin, and her little smile! Her spirit, which is so wise beyond her short years here on earth, her triumphs, her reasoning... I could go on and on.
I am going to celebrate the gift this weekend of sharing a human life, and I thank God for every second of it!
So, Happy Birthday, my little Boo! Papa loves you!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Letting go.

It is going to be a new beginning for me- my own personal "Happy New Year", each word broken down from that phrase literally.
1. Happy; I will be joyous as much as possible, as I am responsible for my "self".
2. New; as in, going forward, I will open myself up to new beginnings, new way of thinking. New. Bright and full of promise.
3. Year; well, that one I don't have a good phrase for! I know it will not take me a year to get it going!
Why? I think I have been going through a lot of changes lately, taken some hits over the past few years, and am just ready. Ready to be happy. Letting go of the people that want to hold me down, or back, or not letting me move in the direction that I know I must go in. Just let go of the negativity. Just. Let. Go!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

It always takes me a few days to come around when Olivia goes to her other papa's house. I usually busy myself with cleaning, laundry, gardening, pet stuff, etc., the first day. Well, today she was on the forefront of my mind while I was cleaning.
I started vacuuming the kitchen, moving the dog crates and getting all the dirt from under them, then moved on to the dining room, and then the living room. While cleaning the living room, I moved first my big comfy chair, then the sofa. As I was thinking about her, I started vacuuming behind the sofa. I stopped when I saw the bright yellow construction paper and green pipe cleaner flower we made a couple weeks back lying face up. I picked it up and it brought such a smile to my face! It was like a gift from above! I love life and all its mysteries - you never know what will happen next.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


I woke up this morning to the sounds of my puppy whining. The kind of whining that is really, really annoying! Anyway, it is 5:03 in the morning (I looked at the clock in my room)and slipped on some slippers and into the kitchen I went. I let him and my other dog, London, out, and- RAIN! Yuck. More wet dog smell, dirty kitchen floor ( I literally just mopped the night before), and muddy pups from playing in the grass I mean mud. I let them back in after they did their business, and promptly went back to bed. This time, I opened my window a bit, and the sound of rain put me back to sleep in no time at all.
I woke up around seven (Oh, NO! Get Olivia up from bed! Take a shower! Press our clothes! Make her a lunch! Feed the dogs, cat, fish! HURRY! Oh, but first your coffee!!) and felt really relaxed (after the initial mental flurry, see above!).
So, got her up from a deep slumber by softly singing to her, and we were on our way to a good day.
So, on the way to school/work, I said,"bummer. This rain is a bummer." Then,from the back seat I heard, "But rain makes the flowers grow". How right you are, sweetie! Thanks for putting things in perspective. Sometimes we need a little rain in our lives to make our own flowers, so to speak, be more worthwhile.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Mothers Day

Tomorrow is Mothers Day, with a capital "M" and "D".
So much of how I parent I get from how my mom parented me. I talk things through with my daughter. When she gets a scrape, I put some neosporin and a band-aid on it, and hold her until the crying stops. Like my mom did for me. When I was upset, I knew I could always go to mom for some comfort, and I want to be that for my little girl when she gets older. It is important to have a loved one you can turn to in times of distress.
My mom is simply amazing. She raised six kids- age 1 through 10- for most of the year by herself- and we all turned out great, no drug or addiction problems. Most of all, and most important of all, we turned out to be good people. We are there for each other. Not that we are all in close proximity, but only a phone call away. And let me tell you, some of us got the same cell phone service to cut down on the minutes!
Sometimes when parenting gets a little challenging, I can't help but think of how my mom handled all of us with all of our needs.
The answer is love! The answer is always love when raising kids.
So, mom, thank you so much for raising us all with love, even during the most trying times! I LOVE YOU!
And to all the moms out there, HAPPY MOTHERS DAY!
And p.s.- you were right about the perm- it didn't look that great on me after all!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Papa vs. "Lunchables"

I'm not sure how many parents out there still make lunch's for their kids, but count me as one. My friend Cathy in Michigan's sister-in-law was hired as a cook for a public school, and after she told me about the "passable for human consumption but barely" meats they put into our kids little systems, well, that was it for me!
Once my daughter could start eating, I tried really hard to feed her only organic foods. Whole Foods carries a line of baby food that she ate right up! That was an awesome time! Well, she started growing and experiencing more foods, and it sometimes isn't always possible to see what she eats when she is at the sitters or what have you. While she was at a certain sitters house who has some kids of her own, she was introduced to Lunchables. The little boy of the family ate that for his lunches, and, well, since I have a little girl, she wanted to eat what he ate, because I think she thought he was cool. Fast forward to preschool!
I have been guilty of packing Lunchables in a pinch, or because she requested that for lunch. But I mostly refrain in favor of more wholesome foods to put in her little belly.
So, I went to Trader Joes and picked up some organic chicken. The plan was to make "chicken fingers" (I never got that- chickens don't have fingers, or at least not the ones I used to raise) for dinner, and pack them for lunch the next day. She liked them so much for dinner, she requested them for lunch! I felt so proud of myself! I packed such a nice lunch for my little (growing) bundle of joy, complete with organic chicken fingers, delicious organic juices, apple, cottage cheese... Oh, I was so proud of myself! I have finally kicked the Lunchable habit square in the chops!
I pick her up from school, and I go right to her lunch box after I say my hello, and... and... she didn't even touch her chicken fingers. I felt deflated! So I asked why she didn't eat them, she said, "But I ate my cottage cheese!". Yes, you did, I said, and told her how proud I was of her good eating habits.
I told her we had to stop by the store on the way home for some (organic) mac-n-cheese. As we were going up and down the aisles, I noticed all the colorful packaging designed JUST FOR KIDS, and, well, ever read the back of those things?
As we were walking past the meat section, my speed increased, barely two wheels on the floor and my baby girl holding onto the plastic steering wheel of our "souped up to look like a racing car shopping cart", when, out of her beautiful little mouth, what did she see and shout? LUNCHABLES! I WANT LUNCHABLES FOR MY LUNCH TOMORROW, PAPA!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010


I read on my friend Julianna's blog this morning a chinese proverb, and a part of it said with money, you can buy a house, but not a home. How true is that statement!
Last year I bought a house: this year, I live in a home. What happened? Life!
Little by little, things started happening. First, paint. That was it for awhile.
Then I started gardening, and taking care of what was there. I also planted a special little garden for my daughter. Originally, I had plans for "la petite Trianon" (from the "let them eat cake" phenom, Marie Antoinette!). Well, budget (oh, I HATE that word!)and, well, zoning, made me have a reality check.... but I digress. I started nesting big time. I have mostly original art on my wall from family and friends, and comfy furniture. And the spirits of my house, my pets. And some of you know, I am a big meditator, and I really think the "good vibrations" are taking hold this year, transforming my house into my home. Last year, my ancient crab apple bloomed in the front yard. This year, it really BLOOMED! Not only that, there is a robin couple making this years nest in it. I am honored! Last year, my lilac bush had several blooms on it- this year, I have a plethora of blooms!
Almost every morning, after my morning meditation, I'll pour myself a cup of coffee, sit on my big over sized chair, and look out my window at all the life that is going on, and take time to reflect on my own life. I take note of everything good ( and leave out the bad- don't want that energy to follow thought),and realize how blessed I am to have a home for my daughter and myself.

Saturday, April 24, 2010


I am very grateful to have a few, very close friends. They have helped me in my times of need with a listening ear when I needed to talk, a shoulder to cry on when my life came toppling down a few years ago, or a kind gesture. In many ways, I think our closest friends are what some call "soul mates", and they sometimes are to whom we confide in when we can't even talk to our partners or family about what is truly bothering us at the root cause. Why? Because the best of friends will always listen, aren't judgemental, and really want what is best for us. They will gently let us know what their take is without hurting us or our own sense of right or wrong.
I hope everyone out there has such friends. Who knows when you may need one, or better yet, be one. To my friends, I want to say I love you, and thank you.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Earth Day

My first post, and it is Earth Day!
I usually make a special trip to Home Depot on Earth Day. Why? BECAUSE they give you a little pine tree to take home and plant!
I think that is great! Alas, this years pilgrimage became a victim to a trip to the vet, a managers meeting, and then a full schedule.
The last little tree I got from Home Depot (did I mention they are free?) was planted on my old farm. It actually made it over the winter, but, sadly, meet a horrible fate at the blades of a lawn mower. He said it was an accident. I didn't buy it. He (the ex) is a wonderful gardener, and prides himself in lovely, colorful beds. He always plants trees well on there way to maturity. I, however, am a nurturer. I LOVE getting the little thing, barely making a print on the earth, and rejoice in watching it take root and grow! I also give the little buggers room to spread. Maybe that was the problem. Or maybe he didn't like me that particular day. At any rate, I planted it by the chicken coop ( I also had chickens that I let free range in all those glorious flower beds... hmmm.). I thought it had plenty of room, and I thought it was in far enough off the grass. Well, we all know the fate of Pinus Something or other. Oh, and the fate of the chickens that I thoughtfully ordered from MurrayMcMurray hatchery? Well, lets just say I was told they were "given away" to a farm family. I totally doubt they lived out their lives in a large chicken coop with east facing windows, and crazily planted "needs some T.L.C." plants from the nursery to look out at.
At any rate, thank you Home Depot for nurturing our dreams of a tree filled world, one that produces oxygen and absorbs CO2!
Happy Earth Day everyone!