Friday, July 27, 2007

Another cute kiddo

Originally uploaded by Ernesto and Kristen Burden.

For cute kiddo Friday I couldn't resist this picture of my niece Sarah, taken at a recent family get together at my mom's house. I haven't seen her since last summer when she was just a baby and now she is one the cutest little kids I have ever seen. I mean the hair, the eyes, gosh, even the eyebrows. Too cute. Of course she screams like a banshee if you try to pick her up, but hey, she's attached to her mom, and as well she should be.

Happy Friday, everyone!

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Thank you to the bagger lady

Dear Bagger lady at the Stop & Shop:

Thank you for bringing out my groceries to my car last week. I didn't particularly need your help, but you were very insistent that I had my "hands full" and needed some help, so far be it from me to keep you from doing your duty. Aside from the fact that my kids were probably on their absolute best behavior at the grocery store ever, I still appreciate not having to haul that heavily laden cart out to the lot, especially since I was carrying a sleeping infant on my chest. In fact, I kind of enjoyed having you bring them out for me and sort of even wished someone would do that every time I went. I think I am well over my "I can do everything by myself and don't need anyone's help, ever" attitude. So again, thank you for your help.

Oh, and I'll be coming back tomorrow and this time, if you could please put the groceries in my car, that would be great. See? I told you I was over that whole not accepting help thing.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007


I am publishing this blog post with permission from WhyMommy in an effort to spread the word on breast cancer awareness. She was recently diagnosed with a very aggressive form of breast cancer and is blogging her battle with it with grace and humor. Please keep her in your prayers.

Inflammatory breast cancer
Monday July 23rd 2007, 3:11 pm
Filed under: About Us / Favorites, breast cancer

We hear a lot about breast cancer these days. One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetimes, and there are millions living with it in the U.S. today alone. But did you know that there is more than one type of breast cancer?

I didn’t. I thought that breast cancer was all the same. I figured that if I did my monthly breast self-exams, and found no lump, I’d be fine.

Oops. It turns out that you don’t have to have a lump to have breast cancer. Six weeks ago, I went to my OB/GYN because my breast felt funny. It was red, hot, inflamed, and the skin looked…funny. But there was no lump, so I wasn’t worried. I should have been. After a round of antibiotics didn’t clear up the inflammation, my doctor sent me to a breast specialist and did a skin punch biopsy. That test showed that I have inflammatory breast cancer, a very aggressive cancer that can be deadly.

Inflammatory breast cancer is often misdiagnosed as mastitis because many doctors have never seen it before and consider it rare. “Rare” or not, there are over 100,000 women in the U.S. with this cancer right now; only half will survive five years. Please call your OB/GYN if you experience several of the following symptoms in your breast, or any unusual changes: redness, rapid increase in size of one breast, persistent itching of breast or nipple, thickening of breast tissue, stabbing pain, soreness, swelling under the arm, dimpling or ridging (for example, when you take your bra off, the bra marks stay – for a while), flattening or retracting of the nipple, or a texture that looks or feels like an orange (called peau d’orange). Ask if your GYN is familiar with inflammatory breast cancer, and tell her that you’re concerned and want to come in to rule it out.

There is more than one kind of breast cancer. Inflammatory breast cancer is the most aggressive form of breast cancer out there, and early detection is critical. It’s not usually detected by mammogram. It does not usually present with a lump. It may be overlooked with all of the changes that our breasts undergo during the years when we’re pregnant and/or nursing our little ones. It’s important not to miss this one.

Inflammatory breast cancer is detected by women and their doctors who notice a change in one of their breasts. If you notice a change, call your doctor today. Tell her about it. Tell her that you have a friend with this disease, and it’s trying to kill her. Now you know what I wish I had known before six weeks ago.

You don’t have to have a lump to have breast cancer.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Blink and you'll miss something

Momma gets a smile
Originally uploaded by Ernesto and Kristen Burden.

Isobel rolled over for the first time today. I was running up the stairs to answer the phone when I glimpsed her out of the corner of my eye on her play mat and there she was, rolling onto her belly. I had been in the kitchen with David getting him some applesauce and I heard Isobel grunt several times in a row. I thought perhaps she was working on a "number" as we like to call it. Turns out she was trying her roll herself over, probably so she could make her way into the kitchen and finally get some attention from me. But really, I hadn't been away for more than a minute and then as I'm up on the staircase I nearly miss her reach that milestone because I'm in such a hurry. Of course she then proceeded to do it about a half dozen more times and then tried to roll herself right off the changing table later in the day. Apparently she has somewhere to go, some people to meet. Who knows.

Anyway, it is blowing my mind how quickly she is growing and changing and her big brother and sister right along with her. There are times when their babyhood seems to drag on forever and then there are days like this that remind me how very fleeting it really is.

Here we are hanging out in the back yard a couple weeks ago. Already she looks different, but I'm happy to say the smile has not changed a bit.

Monday, July 16, 2007

Farewell my flippy friends

Apparently flip flops are all the rage in fashion footwear. I am about the last person in the world to be trendy, so I was surprised to learn today while skimming this article that I share a fondness for the simple, slip-on, no fuss flip flop style footwear with the fashion elite. Honestly, I bought them because they were about four bucks at Target and my sandals from last year had finally fallen apart, leaving me with no summer footwear.

I love the flip flops. Once you get used to that strap between your first two toes, they feel really comfy. And they're so easy to get on and off, perfect for that sensation of summer ease, like I'm vacation or something, which of course I never am. They're great, though. Cheap, carefree and they make a cute little sound when I walk.

Well, they're also a pain in my back. And my foot. And now my toes are numb, too. I thought I had the beginning symptoms of some awful disease, but it may just be that I'm wearing the damn things too much. And I do. I wear them everyday, just about all day long. And yes, I should know better. But I didn't think they would cause me any problems. Then a couple weekends ago we were out at my sister-in-law's, and Cat and I got into a conversation about our issues with back pain. During the discussion I looked down and noticed that we were both wearing flip flops.

"I wonder if these having anything to do with it?" I said.
She shrugged, "Maybe?"

Well, it's just a hunch, but I bet a little more arch support might indeed help the problem. Part of it of course maybe that I'm lifting and carrying an infant who gets a little heavier everyday and I'm not always bending with my knees.

So now I've got to take a break from these and wear something entirely unfashionable like, say, my running shoes. Not only are they old and dirty, they don't smell particularly good either. Oh, I was sooo close to being a fashion icon. No really, I was! Okay, I was sooo close to actually following a trend through to its end. Whatever. At least now I won't feel compelled to paint my toenails.

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Friday, July 13, 2007

Trio of Trouble

Trio of Trouble
Originally uploaded by Ernesto and Kristen Burden.

Here are the kids yesterday after a trip to my mom's house. They both wanted to hold Isobel so before they went head to head I suggested they hold her together. 'Bel looks a little concerned, but otherwise okay. I guess there are worse things than being smothered with love.

Happy Friday everyone. It's the thirteenth...beware of kids in groups of three!


Monday, July 09, 2007

Who are you and what have you done with my husband?

Last week was a busy one, so I didn't even get to post my cute kiddio pic on Friday. Ernesto had taken a few days off and we used the time to hang out, visit with family and get some things done around the house. I couldn't have anticipated how much we would in fact get done.

I was going to order some phonics and first reader books for David when I noticed Ernesto had saved a book in the Amazon "shopping bag" entitled, Getting Things Done- The Art of Stress-Free productivity by David Allen. E loves these kinds of books and is always looking for helpful tips for keeping things together and making them run more smoothly. I included it in my order and within minutes of reading it, this book opened up within him a whole new yearning for organization, the likes of which I've never seen. He went to town, sorting, cleaning, FILING and with great joy and enthusiasm he bought a label maker. Yes, a label maker. He said it was key to the whole productivity thing, at least, according to the book. I very clearly heard him in the office say to baby Isobel, "We love the label maker, don't we baby?" She gurgled in agreement. I would be lying if I said I wasn't just a little pleasantly terrified.

But I do get it now. After having used that little gadget myself I was labeling folders for taxes and warranties and all manner of things with great exuberance. Our files are beautifully and clearly labeled and having gone to the trouble of making the folders made us clean out the old ones and now we only have filed what we need, which is about half of what we had before. This device wields great power, making you want to obsessively label everything in your home. I think maybe the label maker needs a label.

And perhaps, just perhaps, if this thing is as magical as it seems, I could simply type in "Beef Wellington" and label the dinner plates as I set the table tomorrow night. Hey, if my husband can happily and intentionally buy a labeler, anything is possible.