A New Journey

Oh, Harper.

I’m writing this from a still and quiet house while you take your afternoon nap (for which I am still so grateful).

I know I said I would be back in this space – to write and document and grieve and celebrate, but life got in the way once again and I simply had to be okay with scrambled thoughts in my rushed morning shower. It’s not enough, of course. Those scattered thoughts and memories and life lessons are not fit for anything less than proper documentation. And so here I sit, again, pounding at the keyboard hoping your rest will afford me enough time.

We’ve been through so much, you and I. So, so much.

I had anticipated that things would be different by now, you gearing up for your (third!) birthday – no longer an infant, a babe – but a little boy. And while they are, indeed, different, they are still so hard in so many ways. It is important to say that the struggles we have faced have only made the highs all the more noteworthy. Every moment of sweetness and joy I have snatched, tucked deep within and kept close to my heart.

You start preschool tomorrow. Preschool. I still cannot fathom how this has happened, but here we are. The clock will always continue to tick and you will grow and mature and become even more of your own person with each second of each day. We debated your readiness – you just meeting the designated age requirement by two short days. But I feel like it’s time- you are ready even if you don’t know it yet.

I worry, too, of course, about the transition. In the nearly three years you’ve been in our lives I have only ever been away from you for two hours at a time. It only ever happened once, and I remember the time and place distinctly. You were so needing of me – nursing so frequently, needing me to care and comfort you and deciding, right from your very first breath, that I would only ever be the one to be able to do for you. No family. No babysitters. No leaving.

It was taxing, of course, and I suffering physically and emotionally a great deal – but it was worth it in the end. You are always worth it. Just recently I left you with your Father to spend some much needed time away with my friends. Overnight. Cue the anxiety and tears (on my end!) You survived, of course. It was a reminder that things will be okay – that you ARE okay and will continue to be okay. It was a reminder that despite my reservations that I may have done things the “wrong” way … that you are capable and secure and will be well adjusted in the end.

The time has come now for you to start your own journey. I am so proud of the person you are, the little boy you are growing into, and the man I know you will become.

You are ready, even if you (we) don’t know it yet.




Finding My Way Back

And here we are again – a new year with new hope and anticipation and longing.

Scribbling words in notebooks in a hazy state of exhaustion wasn’t fulfilling my need for release.  It has been a tumultuous year – ridiculous, even, and yet here I am feeling the need to document again.

I always find my way back.  Someway.  Somehow.

Here’s to 2015.


Seven Months.

Seven months.  Where did those seven months go?

My sweet, sweet boy.  You grow and change so quickly that I am having a hard time keeping up.  I wake each morning to new sights and sounds – hair that has filled in, arms and legs that are longer and reaching further, eyes that seem wider and brighter and a smile that now houses two perfect tiny teeth within.

I’m not sure when or how it happened, but my little baby has turned into a little boy.  You have the ability to read expressions on our faces and mimic them which completely blows me away.  You have such a cheeky, innocent and yet mischievous nature that it makes me both excited and terrified for our years to come.  Your giggle is infectious, your hugs warm and welcoming, and your heart so full of love that I am smitten.

I spent many nights rocking you in your room, tears streaming down my face – trying to decide what the best thing to do for you was.  We were struggling with nursing and reflux and so many different opinions and diagnoses that each day held such physical and emotional turmoil.  But there I sat, and rocked, and held you in my arms and sang the same song to you – over and over.  Because I felt every word and wanted you to know – always – that my pain was never because of you.

you are my sunshine,

my only sunshine.

you make me happy,

when skies are grey.

you’ll never know dear,

how much i love you.

please don’t take

my harper finn away.

I stopped singing that song to you a little while ago when we were trying to develop a strong sleep routine and nourish healthy sleep hygiene with you.  I created what we now call the slumber song and have worked that into your nap and night time sleep routine in it’s place.

The other night, I stopped singing the slumber song and instead started singing You Are My Sunshine while I held and nursed you.  You looked up at me, paused your nursing for a moment, and smiled – a wide, accepting and almost relieved grin.  I continued to sing, realizing you were acknowledging the moment, the words and the melody and you returned to nursing – smiling and cuddling and almost cooing with delight to hear it again.  You reached up and stroked my cheek and in your own precious way let me know that ‘you’ knew.

You remind me daily that you are so much more than you appear.

Seven months have passed in a moment – a haze of exhaustion and fear.  A blur of a new mother’s apprehension and uncertainty.  As much as I enjoy seeing you grow and learn and catch glimpses into the person you will soon become, I yearn for things to slow down.  I am trying to remind myself to enjoy you here, now … in this current moment.  Because once it’s gone it won’t be back again and you have so much to offer us already.

I love you, my precious little peanut.  I will keep singing that song to you – keep telling you how much you mean to me despite any turmoil we endure.  Because it is worth it – it will always be worth it.

Seven months behind us but with so many more to come.





Mother’s Day.

Today is Mother’s Day and I must admit to feeling awkward and disjointed at the thought of being celebrated, rather than being the one celebrating.

I never really saw myself having children – a child to call my own, to nurture and protect and raise into an independent member of society.  I was comfortable with the idea of a family of three – husband, wife, dog.

Of course, something changed.

You are here now and even though the words are often said by many other Mother’s and many more to come … I simply cannot imagine my life without you in it.  You have made the sum so much bigger and brighter than it’s parts and for that I will forever be grateful.

And so while the weather is not cooperating for us today (snow?) and while I am weighed down with exhaustion and fatigue, I look to you and smile to know that you have and will continue to make things better.  You are my tomorrow – my brighter day, my hope and promise of so many inspiring moments to come.

I will be the one celebrating, not being celebrated – despite what this day calls for.

You are worth such joy.





Disjointed and Raw.

I know I’ve failed you.

I know the words were there early on but I couldn’t pull deep down and bring them to the surface.  I was sinking – trying to tread water and each day brought it’s own new challenges.

Six months you’ve been a part of my world now – this world that I was so completely unprepared for.

I know I should have talked and dreamt and tried to bond more with you.  I know that I should have read to you, sang to you, shared and confided in you.  Instead I was too focused on the practical aspects of bringing you into our world.  I was too sick and too detached to think about creating, nurturing and fostering our relationship.

You were inside me, attached to me, connected to me.  In every fibre, every thread of the textile of who I am, you were there.

But I took it all for granted.

Almost every night I lay awake in bed when I should be sleeping.  I think back on our time together before you came into the physical world and truly created this little family of ours, and I am disappointed in myself.  I didn’t realize the gift that was given to us.  Even through the sickness I should have been able to recognize the beauty, the fortune, the hope and promise that was building more with each passing day.

We have had our struggles. I have shed many tears of doubt, of worry, of frustration and of guilt.  I was beyond afraid that this would be our legacy – that I would continue to walk around in a haze of uncertainty and regret and despair.  Before having you I read that Mothers can take weeks to grow to feel this – this weight in their chest and pain in their heart.  This all consuming, undeniable, terrifyingly forceful love.

It might have taken longer for us, but it is finally here.

I would accept the illness and the doubt and the worry to be here with you.  I would accept the physical pain, the struggles, the uncertainty and the fear all over again in an instant, if it means being in this place. To feel my heart bend and bleed with it’s overwhelming love for you. This moment in time is challenging in it’s newness, yes, but it is all I have ever wanted.  I just didn’t understand that until now.

I will move mountains for you, Harper.

Anything you will ever need you will find in me.  Always.




I Have Not Forgotten

The words are still there – brimming and churning deep within.  Nearly a year after writing this post the feelings are flooding back and I am reminded of how severely I wanted exactly what I have now – my precious little family.

We went to New York that December and held hands, reconnected and made new commitments.  In January we set out to make it happen and in February we were fortunate enough to celebrate the good news.  In October everything finally, profusely changed as we welcomed our little Harper Finn into the world and we have not looked back since.

I am hopelessly in love and now even more hopeless with juggling everything in my life.  The changes are real, but they are welcomed with an open heart and an even sweeter smile.

I am trying to find my way back here.  I don’t want to forget and I cannot accept that it is easier to let it go.  “The world does not wait” someone once wrote, and it is true.

I have not forgotten.


Pumpkin Granola

There’s something to be said about seasonality – that is, cooking with echoes of the current season and embracing all that is resonate.  Autumn, of course, means pumpkins and nutmeg, apples and cinnamon, squash and sage.

The crisp air reintroduces the warm breath of the oven back into the home.  It welcomes back hearty breakfasts laced with leisure, proteins cooked low and slow, root vegetables, herbs and stock that are simmered gently and eventually find their way into a warm and welcoming bowl.

I am not one to shy from tradition.  In fact, I adore everything that it brings.  And while I might not be the first person to run out to the store for fresh pumpkins in which to make their own puree, or even stockpile the canned variety for the weeks ahead, I do recognize the value of accepting convention and, ultimately, the predictable.

I woke this morning earlier than expected, to an unusually cold floor underfoot – windows were wrapped up in a blanket of frost and the kitchen stood blissfully still in the early morning light.  The rush of the day was just starting to take shape outside and I understood, then, the value of tradition – the routine of it all.

Much like my need for a steaming-but-not-too-bitter-cup-of-coffee as I first rise each morning, tradition brings with it the comfort of anticipation, reliability and consistency.

And so I decided to make a batch of granola just as I have done many times in the past.  Only this one would be flavored with pumpkin, and it would be laced with the spices of the season – cinnamon, nutmeg, clove.  It would be a sweet and salty reminder of the reassurance that predictability can bring.

I urge you to try your hand at this recipe.  It is one of my favorite granola recipes to date and, truly, there are few things as encouraging as having your own home made granola waiting for you in the morning.

Pumpkin Granola


4 Cups Old Fashioned Rolled Oats

1 Cup Pumpkin Seeds – Natural and Unhulled

1/2 Cup to  3/4 Cup Pecans – Chopped

1 1/2 teaspoons Cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon Nutmeg

1/8 teaspoon Clove – Ground

1/2 Cup Dark Brown Sugar – Packed

1/2  to 3/4 Cup Pumpkin Puree

1/2 Cup  Applesauce – Unsweetened

3 tablespoons Maple Syrup

A good pinch of sea salt – preferably Maldon


(1)  Preheat oven to 300F

(2)  In a large bowl mix all dry ingredients well to combine.  (Oats, nuts and spices)

(3)  In a second bowl, mix all wet ingredients well to combine.  (Pumpkin, applesauce, brown sugar and syrup)

(4)  Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until well combined.  If too dry, add more applesauce or pumpkin puree.  Spread onto baking sheet and sprinkle with the sea salt.  Bake for 40-60 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes or so.  Bake until granola is golden, dry and starts to form small clusters.

(5) Store in an airtight container.  Serve with cold milk, yoghurt, or use as a topping for ice cream.