I have contained fire in a jar

I made the hottest batch of salsa ever tonight.

Word to the wise: Watch out for the jalapeños from the Asian Market...they're fiery...even without most of their seeds and that other part inside that makes 'em hot.

Kick Boxing kicked my Boo-tay

I went to a kick boxing class at YMCA today with a super cool gal from church. Thanks Karen!! Oh my goodness, I've never been so exhausted...or instantly sore. It was something like hiking the Superstition Mountains. I haven't used so many muscles in such a short time in my life. I could hardly raise my leg to kick the bag towards the end...and yes, I was relieved when someone came to get me because Cora was crying. She saved me, aww. I'd had a little anxiety the night before about leaving her there, and admittedly, when I handed her over I felt tears sort of well up in my eyes. I was really telling myself "don't cry, BrieAnn." When went in, they were changing her diaper, she was red and wailing. After I had her for like two seconds, she was fine. They said she did really well and was playing and having fun when she just broke down. She was super tired.

I loved being able to go today. I enjoy working out, but I haven't done so in a long time. I love to sweat, and know that I'm pushing myself. A while back I thought about running the OKC Memorial Marathon. I'd love to run the half marathon next year. I hate getting back into shape, but I know it will be so gratifying. I miss running sometimes. I was pretty good in high school. I had some scholarship offers to run cross-country in college, but I was ready to be done with running competitively for a while. I like the idea of running for myself much more than for a team...though sometimes the team is nice motivation. Some old stats: 3.1 miles in 19 minutes; 400M in 60 seconds; 8 miles in about 60 minutes.

I've got some work to do, and hopefully my lungs will cooperate...asthma is the bane of my running existence. I'm excited, and hope I can stay motivated!!!! Watch out road!...and treadmill.

Future Tooth Fairy Contribution

Cora's first tooth made its way to the surface yesterday. Jake found it around 8:00 last night while we were lying on our front lawn looking up at the trees.

She'd been fussy on Monday and Tuesday, which is really unlike her. She had some vaccinations on Wednesday, and ran a mild fever. Then she seemed okay again. I feel bad about vaccines and a new tooth all in the same week. I think diente dos isn't too far off.

A Rare Gift?

We got home from Illinois Wednesday evening. I turned on the TV after we got settled for our 5:30 ritual of watching Nightly News with Brian Williams, and a crazy LOUD buzzing fills the air. The picture and sound are still there, but are completely overshadowed by the buzz. We looked it up on-line, and everything we saw indicates our TV is dying. We looked up new models, we had one we really liked. We woke up the next morning and were going to go get it...that's when I said, "Maybe we can hold off for a while."

Haven't you ever wanted to get rid of TV? I've thought a lot about cutting the cord, but I didn't want to sabotage my friend (or foe). So here we are on day FIVE of no TV. Which also means I haven't watched the Olympics in FIVE days. I don't know that I want to be at home all day without it, but, for now, why not?

Ice Pick Headaches...

I've been having sporadic sharp shooting pains on the right side of my head ever since Cora was born. They don't come at regular intervals, and each individual pain only lasts for a few seconds, but there can be several in a minute. They came more frequently in the first few weeks after she was born. I haven't had any for a while, but today has been awful. I haven't even looked into them until today. I'm going to talk to my doctor about them when I take Cora in for her vaccinations next week.

Yes, really.

My sweet little baby is 6 months old today.

Slow down, Time, slow down...!

I was Made for Public Transportation

I am in love with Chicago. I can't think of a thing I didn't like about it. There were some definite differences, but fun differences. The University of Chicago was amazing. Jake was able to speak with the director of graduate studies for the music school.

I always tend to form rash decisions about cities depending on whether or not it's sunny on my first encounter. There were occasional clouds that blocked the sun, but for the most part, the sun was a shinin'.

My favorite part of it all was mass transportation. I love the CTA. I've always been a people watcher, so it was wonderful to be temporarily locked in a metal car with such a variety of people. It's such a stark contrast. There was a man sitting behind me on the Red line who was in pretty bad shape. He smelled heavily of cigarettes and alcohol. He was behind me for two stops, when he made his way off and straight out to the trash can outside our car. I'm sure that is his main existence - living on the subway. One stop after he got off, a well-dressed man came and filled his seat.

We went to the Museum of Contemporary Art. One exhibit reminded me of a porn mag. I didn't spend much time with it, but there were three others that were awe inspiring: Sarah Sze Proportioned to the Groove, Alexander Calder in focus, and I can't remember the the last one - they were x-rays with random material objects inside - it was actually my favorite. I was too busy looking at the pieces to look at the name or titles.

And finally, a piece of Champaign, IL. The best bookstore I've ever been in so far is in downtown Champaign: Jane Addams Book Shop. We were there almost two years ago when Jake auditioned for the University of Illinois (when he was going to go for Collaborative Piano). Last time we found a James Agee poetry book we'd been looking for for some time. We also got the Carter Family biography. This time I found two Anne Sexton poetry books: Love Poems and Transformations. I could spend hours and hours and, oh yes, more hours looking through all of the books.


Jake and I woke up around 9 this morning, packed our bags, and now we're in a hotel room in Urbana, IL.

He's doing some research at U of I here tomorrow. On Tuesday we're going to see Chicago. Yay for free museum days. We're thinkin' Wednesday looks good for getting home.

I'll tell you later why this makes me giddy...when I haven't just driven for 12 hours with an almost 6 month old...

I Heart the Olympics

I've always loved to Olympics. There are two weeks every two years when I am glued to the television feeling inspired, motivated, proud and connected to the world in an extra special way. We spent this evening at our friends' house eating kabobs, playing Cranium, and watching the Opening Ceremonies. Oh my, China. What I watched this evening left me speechless. I've never seen anything so magical unfold before my eyes. I cannot wait for the events to begin, but I know I will never forget, and will continue to be in awe of what China presented to the world for these summer games.

Small Victory

I have been going around and around with the billing office for my doctor's office for along time from when Cora was born...As in things from the hospital almost 6 months ago are still up in the air. In desperation (almost), I called the billing office for the hospital where I delivered. While that billing office and the one my doctor uses aren't related, the gal the the Hospital BO got me in touch with a supervisor from the other one. She sent an email and no more than thirty minutes later I was talking to a real human being. And we're actually on the road to a resolution!

A few weeks ago, I got a statement in the mail from a collection agency! We always pay all of our bills within a few days of getting them, so I was shocked. The billing office had turned us over without me ever being able to speak to them - not without effort (and lots of messages) on my part. The big mix up has been submitting the proper primary care physician to insurance, insurance misreading the physician sent, and the billing office being impossible to get a hold of - and me, a mere layman being caught in the middle. The worst part was that I couldn't schedule an appointment for Cora's next round of vaccines until the debt was taken care of, which was and is being reprocessed. After speaking to my supervisor friend, Kerrie, I was able to call and schedule Cora's next appointment. She will be getting poked with needles August 20th at 10:30. Victory is almost entirely mine...Muah HA HA

Post-Pregnancy Bod

This has more to do with one aspect of my body after growing a baby inside: my scar.

I look at my scar a lot...even though it's a lot less now than it used to be. I was never grossed out or weirded out by it. I never wish that it wasn't there. There's just something intriguing about it. A baby came out of this line in my abdomen. I know mine is a little bigger than most. The first time I saw my regular doctor after having Cora, she said, "Wow, your scar is really thick." I suppose I wouldn't have known the difference. I'm allergic to adhesive, something we found out in the hospital. My skin was irritated for a few weeks after, so my "wound" was healing on irritated skin. I also wouldn't have thought anything of that, but I was talking to a teacher who said she could hardly see hers, but had a friend who had a thicker scar than hers who had my same adhesive problem. I can see the actual incision line amid the reddish purple thick line. I assume that's what most people are left with. The incision line is maybe a half a blade thicker than an x-acto knife, and white. There's a one-inch segment that has the white line with a light pink wider line. If I cover up all but that section, then I can hardly see it. I wonder what the scar on my uterus looks like.

Aside from the scar, I have 10 pounds I'm still hanging on to. My waist is still 3 inches thicker. My rib cage is smaller. It's like wider and flatter rather than narrow and thick. I have some really light stretch marks on the ladies...which aren't much bigger now, they were just stretched beyond capacity when my milk first came in and was getting regulated. I think I fared pretty well overall. I wonder what the stat comparison will be when my baby making days are through.

Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing

This hymn and Be Still My Soul are my two favorites. I love this arrangement of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir singing it. I've also posted the lyrics because they're my favorite part. The part I love most: "Prone to Wander, Lord, I feel it. Prone to leave the God I love; Here’s my heart, O take and seal it, seal it for Thy courts above."

Come, Thou Fount of every blessing,
Tune my heart to sing Thy grace;
Streams of mercy, never ceasing,
Call for songs of loudest praise.
Teach me some melodious sonnet,
Sung by flaming tongues above.
Praise the mount! I’m fixed upon it,
Mount of Thy redeeming love.

Sorrowing I shall be in spirit,
Till released from flesh and sin,
Yet from what I do inherit,
Here Thy praises I’ll begin;
Here I raise my Ebenezer;
Here by Thy great help I’ve come;
And I hope, by Thy good pleasure,
Safely to arrive at home.

Jesus sought me when a stranger,
Wandering from the fold of God;
He, to rescue me from danger,
Interposed His precious blood;
How His kindness yet pursues me
Mortal tongue can never tell,
Clothed in flesh, till death shall loose me
I cannot proclaim it well.

O to grace how great a debtor
Daily I’m constrained to be!
Let Thy goodness, like a fetter,
Bind my wandering heart to Thee.
Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here’s my heart, O take and seal it,
Seal it for Thy courts above.

O that day when freed from sinning,
I shall see Thy lovely face;
Clothed then in blood washed linen

How I’ll sing Thy sovereign grace;

Come, my Lord, no longer tarry,
Take my ransomed soul away;
Send thine angels now to carry
Me to realms of endless day.


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