What if dandelions were flowers instead of weeds?

My yard grows the best flowers.

I did not really appreciate this fact until Aida fell in love with dandelions this spring.

A little background…I despise  dandelions. They make me sneeze like crazy. They grow everywhere I don’t want them to. They spring back up after I mow them down with the lawn mower. They get stronger when I pull them out but don’t get the whole tap root. They make me to resort to using chemicals to keep my front walk turning into a jungle. (I gave up on the back walk and now just mow it.)

Dandelions bring out something in me that I don’t really like. I need to control them; keep them in their place (which is preferably not in my yard, walk way, or garden). So along comes Aida and I decide to recruit her in my effort to thwart the ever increasing dandelion population. I teach her which flowers are dandelions, then send her on a special mission to pick bouquets of dandelions. I figure the more flowers she picks now, the less seeds will fly around later.

FullSizeRenderAida does just that. She picks them. She talks to them. She plays games with them. She makes them her friends. And then she recruits me to do the same. Now we have pills of dandelions (and rocks) all over the place. They are precious; not to be discarded lightly.

I don’t realize the full magnitude of what this toddler is teaching me until I am asking her to pick up the piles of rocks in the yard and move them to a safe place. She wants to know why. I will be mowing the yard the next day and I don’t want to hurt the rocks (or the mower). “But what about the dandelions?” she asks. So we move those piles too.

Once the lawn was dry enough this morning, I started up the lawn mower. I first mowed the sides of the house that was in the sun (inadvertently avoiding the huge field of dandelions on the other side of the house.) That first pass through the field of dandelions and I remembered Aida’s question from yesterday. “But what about the dandelions?”

My heart sank a little bit with each pass. The adult part of me understood all the reasons that the yard needed to be mowed (the grass was getting long, the biting bugs will be less with a managed lawn, the dandelions will soon turn into puff balls and spread there seeds everywhere). But her question haunted me, and started me on the thought path of “what if dandelions were flowers instead of weeds?”

I don’t have an answer of this question yet but I know it is a good one to ponder. And I am happy to remember that by the time Aida is home from school today, those resilient little dandelions will be popping their heads back up.

Posted in Abundance with less, Intentions, Lessons from a toddler | 1 Comment

Protected: Aida turned two!

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I forgot it was my birthday

Birthdays have always been important to me. I love to celebrate mine. I love to celebrate others. As I have gotten older, I have taken to celebrating more than one day (a weekend, a week, and sometimes a whole month). But this morning when I woke up, I forgot that it was my birthday.

I was reminded of this momentous day when I logged into Facebook and my inbox was filled with birthday wishes. How fun! It really was a surprise.

As the day went on I kept forgetting it was my birthday and being surprised by friends who would spontaneously appear and remind me (the awesome guy who does my work laundry, my yoga instructor, a massage buddy & dear friend texting me from MA).

So here is how I spent this wonderful day so far…

1. I drove Aida into school through the new snow. Along the way, I watched as the snow plow in front of me slowed down, pull in its plow, and move over into the left lane. I could not see what the plow driver saw. There was an elderly man walking with a cane along the side of the state highway. He could not walk on the sidewalk because it had not been cleared yet. Thanks to the plow driver’s thoughtfulness, I and the line of cars behind me followed suit.

snowplow3I went to yoga at Dharma Door. This was only my second time there but I was as blown away with Abbi’s class as I was last week. After the class was finished, Abbi turned to me and asked if I wanted to “fly” for my birthday. “YES” was my immediate and loud answer.


I came home to spend the day with my husband and best friend, Eben. We planned vacations. We ate lunch. We opened birthday presents. We did laundry. And we played games. This time with him alone has become so precious. It really doesn’t matter what we are doing. Doing it together is better.

Ticket to RideI can’t wait to see what the rest of the day brings. The continued surprise is wonderful. I hope I can forget it is my birthday again next year.

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21 by 42


For my 38th birthday, I made a list of the thirty-nine things I wanted to do before I turned 39 (39 by 39). I got this idea from Christina Rosalie, another blogger who inspires me with her ideas, words, and pictures.

A lot has happened since I turned 39 and of course I never got to everything on my list. I had visions of keeping this up every year and my list getting longer and longer. And then life happened.

I got pregnant. My pregnancy consisted of 10 days of feeling good (middle of my second trimester) and then I fractured two ribs. A few sleepless months later and Aida was born. Her birth was magical. And now almost two years later, I am a momma in all that that means…sleepless nights, snotty noses, skinned knees, rolling, crawling, walking, running, laughing, and crying.

In a few days I will turn 41 and I am just now remembering that I am more than a momma. I am a woman. I am a wife. I am a dancer. I am a friend. I am strong. To help me celebrate this reclaiming of life, I decided to return to my list. For a couple of weeks I worked on the list but never got beyond twenty-one things. Then I read this

Darn it if Christina did not nail it again! “Saying no at least as often as I say yes.” And at that moment, I realized twenty-one was the perfect amount of intentions I wanted to set for the 41st year of my life. And here are those intentions.



1. Call mom & dad more often
2. Try one new recipe monthly
3. Reclaim game table space in the living room
4. Play more games
5. Build a puzzle
6. Clean bathrooms weekly
7. Swim
8. Complete a knitting project
9. Brush teeth first thing every morning
10. Exercise and move more.
11. Be thankful daily that my problems are only first world problems
12. Move out of my brain fog
13. Consciously choose the food I put in my body
14. Kiss Eben daily
15. Spend one on one time with Charlie everyday
16. Go to my book group monthly (even if I haven’t finished the book)
18. Go to yoga weekly
19. Go to belly dancing weekly
20. Embrace the elasticity of time
21. Write


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Not a Momma Weekend, Washington DC 2013

This gallery contains 21 photos.

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Questions I don’t want to know the answer to

This list will never be complete. So I will just keeping to it as life happens.


  1. How many “mini” heart attacks will I suffer as a parent?
  2. How many poopy diapers will I rinse out before Aida is potty trained?
Posted in Being a Momma | 2 Comments

Playing Hooky, Puddles & Aida

The puddle that is our front walk

The puddle that is our front walk

“How badly do you want to go to work today?” Those were the first words I heard spoken today. My response, “but I feel fine.”

Obviously the only reason I could see for not going to work was being sick. Mother Nature had a thing or two to teach me today.

The part of Vermont I live in has been going through a “mini” drought for the last month. Usually late April and early May are filled with rain showers, mud boots and planting peas in the garden. Instead we have been enjoying sun, warmth, and sunscreen. I don’t think there was a Vermonter around that did not enjoy this respite from winter and mud season.

Funny thing was, when I went to plant my pea seeds in the garden, I discovered a dust bowl. I have never seen the ground that dry here. Sir Isaac Newton was right when he posited that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. And here we are living it today.

Northwestern Vermont was gifted with an inordinate amount of rain last night. The Lamoille River decide to claim the main thoroughfare between my house, my office, and Aida’s school.

Aida thinks better of entering the puddle

Aida thinks better of entering the puddle

So here I am playing hooky from work with my favorite 14 month old. If only she would only remember what nap time is.

P.S. Not even going to touch upon why I think I have to be sick, in order to not go to work. Aida & Mother Nature are constantly teaching me about mental health days.

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