• Featured,  WW

    The birds and the bees of butterflies

    We got our six-year-old a butterfly habitat for her birthday. Essentially, it’s a mesh enclosure that comes with a gift certificate for caterpillars. The caterpillars were quiet at first, but after a few days, they got active and started spinning themselves into their cocoons. Ten days later, butterflies emerged. So we took them to the park to give them their freedom. We unzipped the lid to free them, and waited for them to fly away. And waited. But they seemed quite content to hang out in their little habitat sipping orange juice. Eventually, one flew away, and then another. But the remaining two were just hanging out on an apple…

  • Cancer,  Featured,  How to Juggle Cancer and Parenting,  Parenting,  WW

    How to deal with disappointment

    I know that one of my jobs as a parent is to teach her how to deal with disappointment – but not like this; this isn’t what I had in mind. We should be working on learning how to gracefully accept that she gets what she gets for dinner, and not necessarily a doughnut. We should be working on accepting the fact that she’s not getting a pony for her birthday. We should be working on understanding that all fun activities end eventually, and when the playdate is over, we need to gracefully go home. Instead, we had to cancel our vacation last minute because I came down with influenza. She…

  • Featured,  WW

    Traveling to Alaska

    I’m thinking about going to Alaska. Next week. Who goes to Alaska in February? This is the time of year even Alaskans try to escape. Well, my mom, for starters. And my brother. They’re both moving back to Alaska and decided to caravan together. Last time I went to Alaska, it was in the middle of summer. I took these photos on our last trip to Alaska. Mom was moving back up there that time as well, and Gem and I tagged along with her. She was so little then. This time, they are taking the ferry rather than driving the entire way through Canada, and they invited us along for the…

  • Featured,  WW

    Genuine Smiles

    I have the hardest time getting good shots of my daughter these days. When she sees me coming with the camera, she either hides, makes a face, or she pastes on a fake smile that just doesn’t look like her at all. I can relate. I have a hard time looking natural in front of a camera as well. I get all self-conscious, and end up looking awkward, or weirdly intense, or both. My favorite photos are the ones where the subject is going about their business, so caught up in what they are doing that the photographer, whether they’re aware of her or not, is irrelevant to the moment.…

  • 2014 - year in review

    2014 – Year end wrap-up

    2014 was full of big changes and new beginnings for us.   Hunting for a new home was stressful, but we knew we’d be ok wherever we landed as long as we had each other. After we finally got moved and settled in, we explored our new neighborhood. I had some thoughts about the fourth anniversary of my cancer diagnosis. My little girl turned 5. We discovered this beautiful shrine in our neighborhood. I finally finished my degree. I attended my first Word Camp. We celebrated our tenth wedding anniversary. My little girl started Kindergarten. I attended the Project Lead Workshop for breast cancer advocates in Washington D.C.   looking…

  • Tour de Pink 2014
    Cancer,  causes,  Living Well,  WW

    YSC, the Tour de Pink, and #GivingTuesday

    A couple months ago, after a Tour de Pink training ride, my friend and fellow cancer survivor, Karen Lawson, posted a selfie on Facebook, and wrote, “Love these legs and the 57 HILLY miles they just carried me up.” I was surprised when my eyes welled up at reading her post. In the nearly 5 years since my breast cancer diagnosis, one of the things I’m still working on is forgiving my body, and learning to develop compassion and even appreciation for my body – mutant genes and all. Cancer felt like a betrayal; my own body turned against me. I’ve learned that I am not alone in feeling this…

  • the white house
    Adventure,  WW

    The White House at Night

    I just returned from a quick, four-day trip to Washington D.C. for ProjectLEAD with the National Breast Cancer Coalition. Coincidentally, my daughter’s kindergarten class has been learning about Washington D.C. in their social studies segments. She wanted me to be sure I got my picture taken with the President. I got this close. The White House is beautiful at night. Our schedule for this trip was very tight: 7:30 am to 7:30 pm, so I did not actually see daylight, with the exception of one quick run to Starbucks, and then the cab ride back to the airport on the last day. But I wasn’t there for sight-seeing or picture…

  • WW

    Get Hitched Give Hope 2014 #ww

    I love this annual wedding planning gala. Get Hitched Give Hope helps to raise funds for the Young Survival Coalition which helps young women living with breast cancer, and the Dream Foundation which helps to grant dreams to people who are at the end of their life journey because of cancer.