In the Spirit of V-day I Present, “Will you be my Wife?”

On this day of loooove, I thought I would share the poem Jr. Stac wrote and read to me when he proposed on August 31, 2008. It’s a little story about how we met and fell in love, so it’s fitting for today.

Lish, We met over five years ago, in a southern state
Oblivious to the future and a little thing called “fate”
Our story began as a kiss on dimly lit stairs
The two of us 18 year-olds had very few cares

Half of the year went by after a fling
Winter set in, and then along came Spring
We got to know eachother, in a dorm called Gooch
But we made it official in a College Delly booth

And from that day forward, we would build our nest
We could fart in front of each other, per your request
A few weeks later, I returned to the dorm
Everything was kosher and appeared to look the norm

But you had thrown my stuff, including my toothbrush, to the ground
You were screaming at me, and it was a deafening sound
But as if a light had come down from up above
I knew right then I had to express to you my love

On hearing this notion, you were taken by surprise
You said you loved me too and you looked into my eyes.
On this idea, through the next year we coasted,
And on the crim dell, I made a sign that boasted.


Our next big adventure was to a land down under,
That was three years ago, and it really makes you wonder
Where the time goes, when great memories are made
If someone had offered, we probably would have stayed

But to stay would have been to ignore something grand,
The love of our families in this familiar land
Because if we had stayed and extended the timeline further,
We would not have had the joy of trying In and Out Burger

Back in the country in wintertime, we had some fun,
In a little unit called Winterplace C101.
And I could not comprehend, what my eyes were seeing,
As my girlfriend for the first time, tried her hand at skiing

Winter melted into spring, and spring into summer,
We had one more year of freedom left, and that was a bummer
But you went to Prague, while I studied for a test,
And our last year in school, we vowed to make it our best

Senior year brought in great shock and great awe,
As somehow I got accepted into schools of law
Where would we go? Where was our fate?
We decided to move to the Sunshine State

But after a few weeks, and some contemplative drinking,
We came to the conclusion we had no idea what we were thinking.
That light shone down once more from above,
And we would now change course for the city of brotherly love.

In a few months time, we rang the Wren Building Bell,
And to the caf and green leafe we bid farewell,
We headed up north, to the land that was fair,
And rented a shabby apartment in Rittenhouse square.

Truly, we were happy in the highest degree,
Even though 1826 Spruce had horrible A/C
In the fall I cracked the books, and started learning the rules,
And you got a job, defending students’ rights at schools.

And somewhere in all of this, we got in the mood,
To get a little tiny dog, and add one to our brood
He jumped and licked and he gave us all he had,
Because you were his Mom and I was his Dad.

Now there is one more with whom we can play,
As we sleep during a rainstorm or have a lazy day,
Truly, on the weekends, no problems can arise,
As long as there is you, our dog, and your eyes.

“How could it get better?” To myself I would say,
We say I love you a thousand times a day
We’re in a great place, and have a great pet,
But things just aren’t as good as they can be—at least not just yet.

As we are growing older, and life gets more and more real,
We should symbolize our love with an eternal seal,
Our love cannot be summed up; nor can it be compared to any thing,
But there’s one thing that’s close—it is this ring.

And as I offer to put this ring around your finger,
There is one question that still does linger

Will you be my wife, for the rest of our little life?

Isn’t he so freaking cute? I tearily excepting his offer and a year later I tearily read to him some pretty important words…

To all the couples out there, who cares if this is a stupid made up holiday? Just have fun, pinch your cutie’s cute butt, give lots of kisses, and don’t start fights. For everyone who is single, eff Valentine’s Day! It’s a stupid made up holiday.

26 Years Earthside

Well, I am officially working on my 27th year of living!

I was born by an “emergency” c-section 26 years ago today. My mom has never written down my full birth story but we have talked about my birth and she felt she was coerced into a cesarean because her OB wanted to go play tennis. She was only 20 years old. There was meconium in her waters and because that was a sign of stress they said it would be better for me to be born via a c-section. She didn’t know enough to question them, she was young and scared, and said okay. But, being the awesome woman that she is, upon reflection she knew that she deserved better and wanted her next births to be hers. She had two unmedicated VBACS with my little sisters. Go, Mom!

I have set some goals to accomplish before next February 12. I figure if I post this blog I will be held accountable so they are:

  1. Finish doula certification
  2. Get pregnant
  3. Become healthier
  4. Get this blog designed and more established–find “my voice” if you will
  5. Move to a place in the city with outdoor space

I think these are all doable. I’m lucky because I know I have Jr. Stac supporting me in accomplishing them. We had a nice long talk over drinks last night and I can’t thank my lucky stars enough to have found him and to have him as mine. We have been together for more than 7 years and honestly, it’s a piece of cake, a walk in the park, and we love each other more every day. (I hope it’s okay to say that without sounding super braggy, but it’s the truth.) We are so on the same page with everything, it’s unreal. Our personalities are really different but all of our beliefs, values, and dreams are so freaking in line with each other. It’s truly awesome.

So I am feeling pretty positive about turning 26 and what this year will bring. I definitely want to change some lifestyle habits and I know it’s going to be hard. I need to exercise more, eat healthier, drink less alcohol, and be more active in general. Not only will this help me to be healthier, but I know it will also make me more fertile so it’s win-win.

Though as much as I love our CSA, I am not the type of person who gets joy out of working out and eating veggies. I like to watch “Say Yes to the Dress,” eat hot dogs topped with sauerkraut, onions and mustard; guacamole; cheese–LOTS of cheese; buffalo chicken pizza; and scrapple, egg, and cheese bagels. man. so good.

Well, on that note! I am going to go enjoy my birthday, but I will leave you with a blast from the past. Here’s Jr. Stac and me on my 21st birthday on our way to “$5 Prom.” Classic. 

How I came to be a birth doula

People often ask me why I decided to become a doula.

I love vaginas!

Joking. Well, kindaaaa joking. I mean, I have always been fascinated with birth and pregnancy. Your typical “birth junkie.”

Once I saw my first episode of “A Baby Story,” I was hooked. Now I have a different opinion of the show, but back then I loooved it. I would sit and watch episode after episode crying and crying celebrating the joy of complete strangers. Some may call me nuts, but I know my fellow birthcrazies know exactly what I mean. Birth is freaking beautiful!

Soon, “A Baby Story” just wasn’t cutting it and I advanced to watching birth videos on YouTube much to the chagrin of Jr. Stac. “You’re scaring the dogs! Watch it on mute.” Umm, is he crazy!?…you can’t watch birth videos on mute! It’s like watching porn without sound…def don’t get the full effect. Anywaaays, it was watching a homebirth video that I first heard of a doula….EUREKA!

I immediately researched where I could get trained (and decided I wanted to be a DONA-certified doula.) I had THE MOST FABULOUS TRAINER IN THE WORLD EVER. She was such an inspiration to me and the women in my training group were amazing–all very different but I felt a unique bond with each of them. After the first day, I could barely sleep and couldn’t wait go back and learn more all weekend.

I knew doula work was what I was supposed to do. What an honor it would be to get to help families during one of the most intimate, defining, powerful, memorable times of their lives. I thought if I could only make one birthing woman feel a little more comfortable, a little more confident, or a little more cared for then it would all be worth it.

I also thought about myself and what I could offer. “I like being a provider, a soother. I want to be a part of something bigger than a 9-5 job. I don’t have an agenda. I think I am pretty likable and approachable. And omg I love birth and want to seeeeee it all the time! I CAN DO THIS!”

Upon completing my training, I signed up for my first “on-call” shift with a local nonprofit that provides free doula services for families who can’t afford them. I was called in that very first shift.

And, as they say, the rest was history.

What this Atheist does on Sundays

  1. Watch Meet the Press
  2. Drink coffee
  3. Take the dogs on a walk
  4. Go food shopping at Whole Foods
  5. Yoga
  6. Make an appointment with an acupuncturist in hopes of solving my 49 (!!) day cycle
  7. Clean up a bit
  8. Watch football with friends
  9. Drink some beers
  10. Play around online including participating in a #doulaparty on Twitter.
  11. Puppy snuggles and bed

Not a bad day!

Jr. Stac slow cooked ribs all day and they were so yummy! I love how excited he gets to try out new cooking experiments. He takes them so seriously; it’s really cute.

Okay so the acupuncture appointment is on for today so stay tuned to hear how this goes…not sure what to think because she told me to buy something called “False Unicorn” online. I mean, what kind of name is that?

Our CSA, more than just fresh food

This is the first year Jr. Stac and I signed up for a winter CSA (usually stands for Community Shared Agriculture, but in our case it’s Community Supported Agriculture).

We live in the middle of America’s sixth largest city, Philadelphia, and love city living. Our dogs have never pooped on grass, falling asleep to silence would just be creepy, and I still don’t get how people get all their errands done when they have to drive to the dry cleaners, pharmacy, and wine store. Ours are all downstairs.

But as much as we love living in a bustling city with 1.5 million other people, we also enjoy having excuses to wear our awesome new matching bean boots, eating organically, and letting the dogs freely explore nature. So when I found out that Philly is the home to the largest urban farm in the country, I knew the crunchy side of us needed to go check it out.

And I am so happy we did! Greensgrow is AWESOME.

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Image and video hosting by TinyPic

They prove that “abandoned land is only abandoned if we choose to leave it that way.” It’s a bunch of neighborhood folks who turned an old abandoned steel plant into a vibrant nursery, farm stand, and CSA program.  They sell Christmas trees (and run a tree recycling program) in the winter, host a fun Subaru festival in the fall (where we get VIP parking because we drive a Subie thank you very much), and send out e-mails full of quips in a witty but friendly tone. love them.

I always look forward to going to pick up our share, which is also a great deal. Every other Saturday for 20 weeks (December thru April), we get to pick up fresh produce, cheese, milk, breads, and meats. Always local, always delish.

Today’s share included:
Baby Arugula
Asian Pears
Sweet Potatoes
Jar of homemade apple butter (my favorite)
Dark Northern Red Wheat Flour
Cheese (this kind)
2 Peach yogurts
A dozen eggs
Chicken sausages with feta and fresh spinach
Rack of baby back ribs (not part of the CSA this week, but we picked some up for the Superbowl tomorrow)

The goods look so yummy and I can’t wait to see what Jr. Stac whips up for meals. (I’m a lucky girl–he is the chef of the house.) Going to Greensgrow is always a highlight of our week not just because of all the fresh food, but also because the people there are so damn cool. Super nice, and make you feel at home.

Here are some pics from our (very wet) pickup this morning.

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North Port Fishington Cookie Factory–all vegan, no bleached flours or sugars. So good!

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Our cute check out guy!

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We broke our glass milk jug last week and owed $2 :(

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Image and video hosting by TinyPic

I feel very lucky to have Greensgrow so close and to part of their community. So what about you? Do you have a CSA you love?

Say Yes to the Dress

Okay, so, kinda embarassed to admit this but, I like love TLC’s “Say Yes to the Dress.” First, let me explain. I actually tried explaining this to Jr.Stac last night and it hardly made any sense, but here’s me trying to figure out my own personality.

I don’t know ANYTHING about fashion. I know what I like and what looks good on me and don’t care if it’s from Old Navy, Marshall’s, Nordstroms, or the quite adorable store across the street, Smak Parlor. So, really, there’s no way I could ever be a bridal consultant. 

But I.WOULD.LOVE.TO.BE.ONE.

Like, that just seems so fun. Getting paid to help women try on the most fun, probably by far the most expensive, and hopefully, the most important dress of their lives(!?!) You get to make thing happen all day long. Moms crying…bride’s childhood dreams of being a princess coming true…placing that veil on and hearing all the oooos and aaaahs. That, I think, would be a pretty fun job.

So while I was daydreaming about a new career in “bridal” recently, a new intern started where I work full-time as a fundraiser. Let me just say, she is pretty wild, but great. She is an anarchist! (I don’t know too much about anarchy, but I probably won’t be messing with her any time soon.)

Anywaaays, the new intern, in addition to knowing a lot about scents, also marries people. 

I would also LOVE.TO.DO.THAT.

I start googling how to get hired as a bridal consultant and get liscenced to marry people in PA and then realize, omg, what am I doing? I know nothing about bridal couture and would be a blabbering mess marrying people. I practically hacked out a lung at my own wedding. not pretty. Also, I am trying to become a DONA-certified birth doula and still live a pretty laid-back life (we like to just relax, and hang out, and drink heady beers, and talk, and just be).

But, what these personal interests tell me is that I must be the type of person who really likes being involed in the most intimate part of people’s lives, huh? I mean, bridal dress shopping, birth! actually marrying them!?! hahaha.. Maybe I should consider a new career as a life coach…wait, are those for real? really, they are?  hmmm….

So, yes, I like “Say Yes to the Dress.” I DVR it every week. I haaaate it when the consultant brings them dresses over their budget. I always tell Jr. Stac, “I would never to that!” I would always be so cool, so chill and be like, “$1,200? No problem” and bring them sick dresses they love.

My First Post

Wooo hooo! Oh! This is fun. I have wanted to blog for so long but just never thought I actually would start one, so it’s exciting that I just bit the bullet, said “what the hell?” and here I am!

I always went on facebook, g-chatted, and sat around for hours watching videos on Youtube, but it wasn’t until I started my work as a birth doula and went seeking a community of birth enthusiasts recently, that I really felt the power of social media. It’s what introduced me to so many different women, blogs, stories, resources, and my new love, twitter, zomg.

Having no “irl” friends interested in birth or my doula work–or god forbid, ttc soon cough, cough–I needed to connect with other like-minded birth-happy people over the Internet. And I am so happy I did! I’ve learned so much about labor support, I’ve read so many awesome stories, and I’ve had plenty of laugh-out-loud-alone-at-my-computer-reading-funny-blogs-during-my-lunch-moments. I’ve been inspired to join in.

I can’t promise being really entertaining, but I can promise adorable pictures of my pets, ideas about birth from a doula’s perspective, and life observations from a left-leaning new-ish wife whose uterus is starting to wiggle –it’s seeing all those beautiful births, god damnit!

Here’s to blogging…:)