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Archive for the ‘tra bosco e paese’ Category

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Last year, around Lorenz0’s first birthday, a mom I’d met at the park and I set up a playroom area at the local library.

In winter or in bad weather it can be a bummer to have to stay inside the house the whole afternoon, or the whole day if you are an SAHM. It’s nice to invite other mom’s and kids over to your place but that means cleaning up before and after and it’s not always practical, particularly if you don’t know them very well.

We thought it would be nice to have a “neutral” place where the kids could play together and the moms could hang out. I’m sure moms out there in blogland agree on this one, having someone to talk to that you can relate to it’s very comforting.

The mom I met at the park is a teacher, but she didn’t know how to go about it. I told her I knew the Mayor and I could ask if he could give us a room. He sent me to talk to the librarian and she came up with the idea to have the playroom right above the library in a sort of loft.

At the beginning it was just a few moms, a couple times it was only me and Lorenzo, but little by little other moms with kids started joining and now we a have a big group that gets together every Monday afternoon to hang out, play together and have tea and snack.

It’s funny how things just kind of grow by themselves, it takes a small initial effort but once it’s rolling it just keeps going.

It’s the initial effort that makes the difference, I wonder how many moms in this town before us sat at the park and thought

“Wouldn’t it be nice to have a place we could go to where the kids could play together and the moms could chill and talk…”

It was the right time and the right place of course, still I think that if we want some things to happen we have to make them happen.

“Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” J.F.K

How are you making a difference in your community?

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I just remember something funny that happened when Loris and I started dating. At the time it made me laugh, so I’ll share it with you.

We would text each other a lot, a one-phrase-text just to say hi and to send each other little emoticons. Sometimes I would end my texts with xoxo. 

After a while Loris asked me shyly “What does xoxo mean? Sometimes you write it and I have no idea what you’re trying to say.”

I felt a little stupid. I didn’t even stop to think that in Italian it has no meaning whatsoever. The only thing Loris could think of was how the clothes that are extra large have a double x followed by an L (XXL) but he couldn’t figure out why I was talking about extra large anything and he sure didn’t get why the x’s were followed by 0’s.

I told him what xoxo means and now he sometimes will use it when he sends me a text but it’s funny to picture him trying to decipher the secret code.

It’s interesting how some expressions are not at all known in other languages; for instance OK  is used all over the world but now I know xoxo is definitely not!

 

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2015 was a fantastic year! Here are a few of the things that made it awesome:

Lorenzo: without a doubt becoming parents was the higlight of our year. He is our pride and joy and even when we are desperately tired because he keeps us awake at night we are so thankful for him. He is growing so fast! He is almost 8 months old!

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Night school is over: it lasted 3 long years and it was a great challenge but looking back now I’m so happy for the experience. Again I had the opportunity to perform with a group of students for the Christmas concert as a way to give back for the 3 years spent at school.

Minimalism: I started my journey towards minimalism, which at the moment means decluttering. I’m making baby steps and if you were to come over to my place you would never guess I embrace minimalism (we even got a new TV) but I do and it’s a work in progress.

Books I read: 

“The Happiness Project” by Gretchen Rubin

“The Fault in Our Stars” by John Green

Projects:

1)English lessons for children ages 3-8 every Fridady afternoon at my place. It started as an activity to do with my nephews and it grew from there, now there’s a group of 4 mothers who participate and take turns to bring the snack.

2)”The Little Library” is a personal project of mine to create an English library for anyone who like us is raising a bilingual family and needs English books. I think it will be a success! So far I’ve got a dozen books but little by little it’s growing. It’s a little project that makes me very happy.

3) I started teaching Italian to a group of foreign women and it turned out to be so much fun that I hope I can continue doing it for a long time.

Other Happy News: my friend Claire also became the mommy of a pretty little girl! It’s awesome that we are both moms at the time!

Goals for 2016: Enjoy the little things! Spend time with family and friends! Write a children’s book!

 

 

 

 

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Dear Baby Boy

Dear Baby Boy,

Today, a year ago, I discovered YOU. I discovered that I was going to become your mommy and that daddy and I would become a family.

I felt nervous when I saw the two little pink lines appear on the tiny screen. I didn’t feel ready, even though I had been preparing for your arrival for a long while. But now that you are here it feels very natural to be your mommy and for you to be my baby boy.

I still wonder sometimes if I will end up being a good mommy to you and make the right choices; I’m sure I will make mistakes along the way and there will be things you’ll wish I’ve had done differently. I’m the first one to admit that there’s so much I still have to learn about being a mother.

But I hope you will always feel you can talk to me, and tell me anything, everything, and although I might not always understand I will respect you and teach you to follow your dreams.

I can’t promise you that your life will be easy, and that people you’ll meet will always be wonderful. I know you will encounter difficulties and hardships. We all do!

Yet I hope you remember that everything works out in the end, that life is beautiful and that we can make a difference in the world just by letting our light shine.

I hope you will grow up loving life and making your part of the world a little better. I wish for you to have friends who understand and support you and that you willl never forget the importance of family.

I hope you feel our love for you and know how much you complete us. We love you! Thank you for coming into our lives.

Love, Mommy and Daddy

al_lo

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Last May we got some egg-laying hens. Loris and I got 2, my brother Daniel got 6 and the rooster and my youngest brother Andy got the last 2. We share the eggs with the whole family; they lay so many we haven’t bought eggs ever since we got them. The joys of rural life!

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“I never forgot hens are a good thing to have, no matter what you don’t have.” Willa Cather My Antonia

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I’m reading for the second time the book Claire sent me “The Happiness Project”  by Gretchen Rubin. One quote by Jean Cocteau that resonated with me was

“There’s no such thing as love; only proof of love”

August is our anniversary month and this year is our 4th year together.

By now there’s very little we don’t know about each other. There are no surprises in our lives anymore. I know what Loris is like in the morning, when he is tired, or when he’s upset; what he considers fun, how he likes to spend his free time, the kind of people he likes to hang out with, his type of movies and music and how he will never ever, so help me God, open a book on his own initiative.

He knows that I cry when I’m tired, that when I’m upset I should be left alone, that sometimes I miss Hungary; that I don’t like the same movies he likes, that I think it’s fun to go to the mountain but “do we have to be out the whole day?” He knows I always carry a book in my handbag, that I’m not a fan of make-up but that I am enthusiastic about our tomatoes.

I know he loves me. He says it all the time. I don’t hear couples telling each other “I love you” as much as we do. Yet the words alone don’t mean anything if not followed by action.

I know he loves me, he shows it to me in the little things. I felt he loved me when Lorenzo was born and he didn’t leave me alone. I feel he loves me when he comes home tired and still makes dinner because Lorenzo is fussy and wants to be held. I feel he loves when he washes the dishes and takes out the trash without being asked. He shows me he loves me in the little proofs of love.

My sister Susana, posted on FB the link to artist Puuung Love is in the small things illustrations. They are adorable and capture the essence of love. This one is my favorite. How do you prove your love?

Puuung

My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth. 1 John 3:18

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Lorenzo is a month old and it seems only yesterday he was born. He grows so fast; some of his clothes don’t fit him anymore. He stays awake longer now and he stares at the window, at the light bulbs and sometimes at people’s faces. He recognizes my voice if we are in a crowd and I’m not the one holding him. He holds his head up and it doesn’t bob like a poppy like it used to.

Some people have mentioned how having a baby changes your whole life. And it does, but I was lucky to have lots of brothers and sisters to take care of and it prepared me for having my own baby. I was born to be a mother, it comes very natural to me.

But it’s true that some things change. It takes forever for me to get out the door, I have two bags to carry and then I have to make sure I feed Lorenzo before we leave if the trip will be longer than half an hour. I also fret if it’s too hot, too cold, if there’s a bee, if it rains, if there’s wind and if we are driving too fast.

Some days Lorenzo just wants to be held and I don’t have time to do anything. When he sleeps I don’t sleep with him (like they say you should in order to get all your sleeping hours), instead I try to get the most done: the laundry, clean the bathroom, wash the dishes, start preparing lunch (even if it’s 9 o’clock and we eat at noon)…
If somehow I can’t get anything done by 11 o’clock it’s time to pick up the phone and call one of my sisters to come help hold Lorenzo so I can have lunch ready for when Loris comes home.

Time for wahing my hair, cut my nails, check my mail or blog is out of the question. My FB page faithfully reminds me “you haven’t posted in 18 days” “you haven’t posted in 19 days”… making me feel guilty for neglecting my blog. But with such little time on my hands I have to focus on the priorities.

I make it a priority to water the garden but lately it happens around 10 pm when Loris can hold Lorenzo for 15 minutes and I can run out and tie the tomato plants, weed the strawberry patch, harvest the zucchini and water the veggies and flower pots. The good things is that I’m getting really good at getting things done using only one hand. I even went back to typing with only one finger and I’m still pretty good at it.

One day Loris came home and said “My mom’s neighbor ladies told me you shouldn’t hold Lorenzo all the time otherwise he’s going to get spoiled”. I fell like a bull in full charge as the red flag was being waved in front of me. I told him “Tell the neighbor ladies that I only have one child and I’ve waited 35 years to have him, so with all due respect I will hold him whenever I please.” I told my mom about it and she said children don’t get spoiled if you hold them. And if you think about it in a couple of years Lorenzo might not want to be held at all, so while he’s little I will hold him, thank you very much!

There we go, that’s as far as I go being a lioness with my little cub. A friend of mine told me that once Lorenzo was born I was going to be very protective over him, I might not like people holding him or touching him. Actually that’s not a problem, I don’t mind if he goes with other people. But I mind if some random ladies whom I don’t even know, tell me how to bring up my son. My mom is wonderful, you would expect her to be telling you what to do 24/7, after all she’s had 10 babies and knows something about raising children, but she doesn’t. She’s very respectful and makes little useful suggestions every now and then or only when I ask her.

I’m a very happy mother even though the challenges are great. I ran across an article on Lucy Scott, the mother who doodled a diary of the first year of motherhood and some of her doodles are so right on that it had me laughing out loud. The doodles are quite funny, because they are true, but being a new mother is not a traumatic event, actually it’s a wonderful new world you get to discover day by day. I love each moment I get to spend with Lorenzo and I don’t want to miss a thing.

My favorite Lucy Scott doodle. This is definitely us 🙂 Me at 2 am “Honey, can you move a little so I don’t fall off the bed?” He moves, I move Lorenzo and I have my space back. At 2.30 I wake up again because I’m falling off the bed…here we go again “Honey? honey?”…

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