April 17, 2009 |  Category:   family life


It was today and the universe gave me a beautiful day to enjoy in NYC, part of which was spent at the Brooklyn Botanical Gardens to see the cherry blossoms starting to bloom. Wish I could say it was peaceful and relaxing, but with 4 kids in tow (went with friends) it was a constant battle of making sure the kids stayed out of trouble (“Don’t pick the flower petals! They’re for looking, not for picking!” “Don’t swing that sharp stick around, it’s not a lightsaber!” “You’re walking too close to that water!” “The coins stay in the fountain!”). There were some good moments in the day, but I think I’ll just file this birthday away.

So, this wasn’t a big birthday, but it’s close and I’ve been thinking about getting older and aging. Seems like I’ve been having a lot of “how did I get here” moments lately (cue the Talking Heads). How did I get this old? Are these really my kids? I usually don’t think about it, but once in a while I’ll catch the 3 of us in the mirror and wonder how I produced 2 kids who look nothing like me. I was actually sitting in a cafe last week with Mia, my sister-in-law, her cousin and her daughter when the waitress came by wanting to ask the mom whether it was ok if the little girl had a cookie. But she hesitated and admitted that she didn’t know which one of us was the mom. Oh snap! Burn! It doesn’t matter as it did give me a laugh, but I confess that I sometimes look at the girls searching for something of myself in them.

…And one last thing before it turns midnight and another birthday passes: thanks to all who entered so far in our first anniversary giveaway. Reading those comments was seriously the only thing that took me out of the blahs that I’ve been in for the past few days. I especially loved that there were some long-time readers who delurked to leave a message (hello there). It was one of those “Look! There ARE people who read this thing!” moments. It’s nice to meet you.

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  • Jenn April 17, 2009 at 11:28 pm

    Happy (almost?) birthday!!!!!

  • cindy April 17, 2009 at 11:29 pm

    Happy Birthday! Glad to hear that you had a wonderful day. kekeke… I have to admit, I’m one of those lurkers… but I only started reading a few weeks ago. [I stayed up for a long time trying to catch up] I love your blog.

  • cyndi April 17, 2009 at 11:35 pm

    Happy, happy birthday!!

  • laura April 18, 2009 at 12:48 am

    Is that you in the photo with the girls? If so, they totally look like you!!!

  • Stella April 18, 2009 at 2:16 am

    Happy birthday!
    My Mom went through a lot of those same feelings you expressed with me and my sisters (she’s Filipino, my dad is white). She said sometimes it hurt when people wouldn’t believe her when she said I was her daughter or would ask why she was “watching” me. And with me it’s worse as I have NO features similar to her, unlike my sister who has a couple features like her, even though they don’t really look alike.
    But, as I’ve gotten older, my Mom and I have seen more and more how alike we are. Some of it is by choice as I admire and have taken from her qualities, and maybe some of it is imagined, but I have passed windows and seen my Mom in me. It’s not all about looks, and I’m sure you will find some of yourself in your girls as they continue to grow.

  • Shannalee April 18, 2009 at 7:36 am

    Happy birthday, and glad you got to enjoy the beauty outside, even if a little stressful. By the way, for what it’s worth: my dad is Indian and my mom, Italian/German/Danish. She’s blonde, and I have an olive complexion and dark hair. All growing up, people would ask if she were my mom or ask if I were adopted – it used to drive me crazy. But you know? I never even think about it now, and I do see myself in her, physically and otherwise.

  • selkie April 18, 2009 at 8:45 am

    We have the same thing, my boys with an Af-Amer dad: “Where did you adopt your kids from?”. You want to kick those folks at first, but then settle in somehow. And now, with them in their 20’s, they are recognizably mine and no one questions it (but of course, 25 years ago things were VERY different than they are now along these lines).
    Wishing you Many Happy and Healthy returns of the Birthday!

  • sooki April 18, 2009 at 8:51 am

    happy birthday! i think mia resembles you a lot!

  • Brenda April 18, 2009 at 11:54 am

    Happy happy happy! What a lovely photo of the three beauties behind Whimsy and Spice. 🙂

  • Lani April 18, 2009 at 12:14 pm

    Happy day after! I hope your packages arrived in time so you’ll know I didn’t forget your birthday. They can be rather sobering, can’t they? I guess once a year isn’t so bad for having an opportunity to feel/reflect on Time Passing By. And I totally see you in both girls…esp. Claudine’s mouth! Both their noses. The outward curling of the eyes. You’re in there!

  • Ari April 18, 2009 at 12:30 pm

    I, too, admit that I am one of those lurkers. Pretty sure I’ve commented before, maybe twice…quite some time ago. Really enjoy this blog, it’s one of my must-reads everyday! I get stares from people when I’m out with my son, because he is significantly lighter-skinned than I am so maybe they think I’m his nanny or something. Apparently he is the spitting image of me(been told this numerous times by family and friends although I can’t see it) so they probably realize that I am his mother after they take a good look. 🙂

    Hope you have the happiest of birthdays and I must say that your girls are among the cutest I’ve ever seen!

  • Jenna April 18, 2009 at 7:45 pm

    Laura, that is me in the photo and it’s funny because in this photo, with the way Mia is posing, I am seeing something of a resemblance for the very first time. But really, most all of my friends when prompted to give me an honest answer saids she looks nothing like me. Which is ok. she is her own little person.

  • jennifer April 20, 2009 at 9:07 am

    happy birthday (now a little belated)!

  • Krista/DDSweets April 20, 2009 at 9:32 am

    Happy Birthday! I just wrote a similar birthday thinking post on my blog. Your girls are beautiful, and they really do look just like you! BTW…you are being wished a happy birthday on the Team EEAT site! Stop on by!

  • christie April 20, 2009 at 4:59 pm

    Happy wishes will be posted in a more private (and appropriate) venue for such a close friend. But had to say in this pic, the way Mia is looking — I totally see the resemblance! Especially note the shape of her mouth compared to yours. You both have the same dip in the middle, and curled bottom lip. Isn’t that cool? I think it’s cool. I was pretty struck by it.

  • Stacy April 21, 2009 at 10:27 am

    Before I even read this post I was thinking how Claudine (that’s the youngest right?) looks like you. Same mouth 🙂

  • kimberly April 23, 2009 at 10:16 pm

    you take beautiful photos-
    Darling girls.
    Kim Anderle