Monday, January 28, 2013


Ivy is 1. What follows is a reflection on the past year in two parts.

Part 1: (All  about Ivy)

Ivy and I are in Utah spending some time with my sister before she leaves on a mission. Stephen was here a weekdng, so we had a pre-birthday party with his family, mine, and some friends. Ivy started the night off right with dancing:

Clapping to the beat. Sort of.
Followed by more dancing:
Gettin' down

 Then some cake:
A group effort between my mom,  Hannah and I.

The world's smallest chocolate fan.
 And then presents:

The big hit of the night was this card from that meows Happy Birthday. Thanks, Phil and Mary.
Even though  she was exhausted from a long day of traveling, she seemed genuinely pleased to be partying the evening away with so many great people.
We spent her actual birthday, Saturday, in Disneyland.
She loved the carousel and rode it twice, as well as The Haunted Mansion, Jungle Cruise and Ariel's Adventure. She surprised me, yet again, by how much she responded to and enjoyed the whole experience.
Ivy is walking a few steps at a time, though she still crawls when she needs to get somewhere fast, which is more often than you would think. She's learning the art of the sippy cup and trying to feed herself with spoons, resulting in huge messes. She loves green beans, chocolate, Havarti cheese, grapes and pudding. She laughs when she hears anyone else laughing, claps when she hears applause, and immediately starts dancing anytime there's a catchy tune. All we have to do is sing one line of Mr. Roboto and her arms start flailing in the air. She yells "Mom" when she's mad or needs something, and speaks gibberish all day long. She knows most the motions to Patty-Cake and does an impressive Itsy Bitsy Spider.
She is constantly moving, and the only time she'll sit still is to watch Sesame Street. She yells at dogs, smiles at strangers (the scarier the stranger, the bigger the smile), and loves being chased. She puts objects in containers, stacks blocks, sits down when I tell her to, and responds to "come here" about fifty percent of the time.
She's an adorable, delightful, tiny little person.
Part 2 (About Being a Mom)
A year ago I held our baby in my arms for the first time. She was perfect I loved her  immediately.
I did not, however, love being a mother immediately. Other moms would ask, "Isn't it the best?" and I would wonder what I was doing wrong.  I cried a lot the first month (see: hormones, exhaustion). I loved Ivy more than I ever imagined possible, but I felt like I was coming up incredibly short as a mom. My daughter didn't seem to know or care who I was, I couldn't get her to stop crying, and we were burning through about twenty diapers a day. What I didn't know then that I do know now is that babies only get better,  as does being a baby's mom. When Ivy intentionally smiled for the first time, it was the happiest I have ever felt. The continuous crying went away. The smiles became frequent. Then there were giggles, cheesey faces, and full belly laughs. She sat up, she crawled, she walked. And I cried because she made me so happy.
I still have my moments. Moments when I pray she'll take a nap so I can get something done. Moments where I feel like being a mommy makes me irrelevant. Moments,  no hours, where PBS is in charge of entertaining my child.  Moments where I wonder if I'll ever do anything of significance. But what's more significant than raising a human being? What could possibly be more important?
I asked Stephen if he was happier now that he was a father. His answer was, to paraphrase, that he was absolutely a happier, more centered, more peaceful person with Ivy in his life. I couldn't agree more. So I'm ok with not getting things done. I'm ok with irrelevance. I'm  ok with days filled with nursery rhymes and apple sauce. I'll get to the other stuff later.  Maybe.


Thursday, January 17, 2013


We can all  agree that Fun. is pretty ridiculous, right? The vocals sound whiny, the lyrics read like a high school poetry assignment, and the lead singer gave one of the worst interviews I've ever seen. But shoot if the We Are Young chorus doesn't get me every. single. time. I know better.  I really do. But by the end of song I'm freaking inspired. I am young. I can set the world on fire.  I can go higher. What does it mean? I don't know. I don't care. I'm 16 again, rife with teenage angst, chanting the anthem of youth, quieting the snooty cynic within.

Do I have any street cred left?

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Dr. Ivy Answers

Meg in Colorado asks,
Dr. Ivy- Why did you poop in the bathtub this morning?

Dr. Ivy says,
"It is in the deepest of meditation that one is able to free one's mind and spirit of the burdens existence on this planet causes us to bear. As I relinquished my worries to the universe, my body gave way to complete relaxation. The gift I left in the tub was nothing more than a symbol of tranquility and peace."

Okay, but why did you then poop on the tile floor immediately afterward?

"My bad. Sorry."

Dr. Ivy
Dr. Ivy, The World's  Greatest Expert

Friday, January 4, 2013

Baby when the lights go out

This is a blog post about the night the power went out in the  Morley home. It is not a blog post about how we spent the next seven hours playing games and laughing and learning that we don't need electricity to be happy. It is a blog post about the agony of trying to use the bathroom in  the dark and the growing fear that we might freeze to death and the good fortune of a fully charged ipad. It's a blog post about how silly my family members look while wearing headlamps, and how I instagrammed lit candles and how moods soured with depleting phone batteries. So I guess it's a blog post about how I should have learned a lesson about love and togetherness but really I was super relieved when the power came back on.