Monday, November 17, 2014


Things are wild here, which accounts in part for the inconsistent nature of this comic... I had my Photoshop brushes set to a different setting leftover from another project, and I didn't want to change them to what I normally use for comics, because who has that kind of time???

Lucy is in the throes of NO.  Amelia is much more amiable.  She has this open-mouth, snaggle-toothed grin that wrinkles up her nose when she sees someone she likes (which is everyone), so that's pretty awesome.

Do these words even make sense?  I feel like my brain is in a constant state of buffering.  I think I'll go to bed.

Friday, September 12, 2014


Sorry for the dead time between posts--- I've had several projects I've been working on for friends and a big one of my own that I've undertaken, so I've really had to squeeze out the spare time from each day.  This is compounded, of course, by the fact that Lucy is talking a blue streak, from the moment she wakes up to the time she finally falls asleep.  It's exhausting, but also amazing--- the funniest parts are when she quotes movies she's watched in the right context.  The other day, I asked her, "How are you?"  And she replied, word for word, "She froze my heart, and the only thing that can save me is an act of true love."  Another time, we were out walking, and we were going down an unfamiliar road, and she said, "Oh, Pongo, Pongo, I'm afraid we're lost."

The fun thing is that she helps to occupy Amelia, who loves to listen to her and watch her.  There will be whole stretches of time where they'll sit facing each other, just giggling nonstop.  Hopefully this bodes well for the future.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Guest Post for In Pursuit!

My friend Tiffany writes a very sweet and very stylish blog called In Pursuit, starring her adorable son Joseph.  This week, she is on vacation and asked me to do a guest post for her about a favorite memory I have of my grandparents.  If you'd like to see the comic, mosey on over to In Pursuit!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Death's Door

Toddlers don't sugar coat things.

I mean, good grief.  This is why cocktails were created.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Sounds Like

The days that you can get them both to sleep at the same time, all you want to do is sit silently on the couch to avoid waking them up.

A brief status update (because both of them are asleep, which means I'm on the clock):  Lucy is more or less potty-trained, she greets us occasionally with "hiya toots, you're one hot-looking tomato," and she can sing the opening lines from "They Call the Wind Maria."  Thanks, Muppet Show.

Amelia is starting to babble and coo, and we get big smiles while she's nursing or having pants-off time.

And now BEDTIME.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Guardian Angel

In the words of Jimmy Stewart, "you look about like the kind of angel I'd get."

For simplicity's sake, I had to leave out how Will's parents were at our house during this episode, and so we actually had some extra help when things started spiraling out of control.  There really wasn't even any opportunity to feel embarrassed about this chaotic end to an otherwise pleasant evening.

Poor Lucy.  She didn't understand what was going on and thought she had done something wrong.  This happened on day two of potty training and set us back a good ways; over a week later, she still doesn't like pooping in her potty.  So I think we're still getting over the ramifications, but buying her Tinkerbell underpants has helped offset the damage.

I have no explanation for why our guardian angel's name is Julius other than it was Groucho Marx's given name and therefore seemed appropriate.  

Saturday, April 12, 2014

The Way Things Are

It's a twofer today!  First, let's check in on what life with Amelia is like:

So far, Amelia is not much of a crier, but boy howdy does she make some bizarre noises.  She's sleeping in a bassinet about two feet away from my side of the bed, and throughout the night she serenades us with an odd combination of grunts, gargles, and bleats.  I usually know she's about to wake up wanting to eat when she starts snorting like Welly trying to ferret a chipmunk out from under the porch.

And in other news:
 I feel great.  I've stopped taking my pain medication and have gotten the all-clear from my OB to drive, pick up heavy objects, and do non-abdominal exercise.  I'm shedding weight pretty quickly thanks to breastfeeding and the coordination it takes to take two children and a dog for walks, but I'm still mostly stuck in maternity clothes and yoga pants.  But I've got a fitness plan and several short- and long-term goals (Glacier National Park backcountry, I'm looking at YOU), and being stuck in yoga pants means that spontaneous yoga can occur at any time.  Resume downward dog!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014


On Monday, March 24 at 10:42 AM, we welcomed Amelia Rose Martin into the world to the chorus of Katy Perry's "Roar." 

I had a hunch that she was going to be dark-headed.  If Lucy is our fair-skinned and blonde-haired sweet tea and peaches baby, Amelia seems to have gotten a few of my Mediterranean genes with her dark hair and olive complexion.  The Italian heritage lives on!

Where can I start?  This time was so much different than last time.  I won't lie; at some points in the last few weeks of my pregnancy, I half-wished that I would spontaneously go into labor, not be able to reach anybody on the phone, and deliver Amelia at home with no drugs or surgery involved.  Of course that was a stupid idea and I am extremely fortunate it didn't happen that way.  Everything happened right on time, from the moment Will's sister showed up to watch Lucy to when we were wheeled out of surgery.

Not laboring beforehand made all the difference in the world.  I was alert and lucid throughout the whole morning.  I joked with the nurses.  I talked more to my OB about his recent vacation than about the surgery.  I answered the tech's questions about national parks.  I teased my anesthesiologist about his weird fixation on bears (in retrospect, you should probably never tease your anesthesiologist).  And I was literally singing when Amelia was born.

So I didn't get my all-natural cavewoman girl power birth.  But you know what?  As medical and drug-induced as Amelia's birth was, that's almost how non-medical and natural my recovery has been.  After I had Lucy, most of what I remember is a haze of pain, unpleasant nights, and general shell-shock.  Three days after we returned home, this all culminated in a night that can only be described as wretched for everyone involved as I tried to undo the ramifications of laboring for twelve hours, getting the epidural, undergoing major abdominal surgery, and then being put on narcotics right away to kill the pain.  Having overcome that, it was still several weeks before I felt well enough to get outside and move around.

This time, when they offered me the hydrocodone, I asked if I could try staying off the narcotics.  They put me instead on regular old Motrin and Tylenol.  It didn't kill the pain, but I remembered my bad experience the first time around and found other ways to cope with the soreness.  When I got a gas bubble trapped in my shoulder from the IV, Will and I walked, with him pushing Amelia in her bassinet, up and down the corridor to try to diffuse it.  When the spot where I had gotten the spinal began to interrupt my sleep, I got out of bed and did some gentle yoga, easing out the tension in my spine.  I breathed.  I laughed.  Mostly I snuggled Amelia and let the feel-good baby hormones do their work.

As a result, this past week I've actually had to stop and remind myself that I'm not supposed to drive, or else I'd have packed up the girls and driven to the mountains for a picnic.  The hardest part has been being restricted from picking Lucy up until my two-week checkup.  Amelia has been eating, sleeping, and pooping like she was born to do it, and Lucy has been sweet and gentle with her.  Will has, once again, been the ultimate champion of parenting and is forever my hero.  And of course, we have tons of loving family and friends coming by every day, for which I am outrageously thankful.

So, all I have to say is, watch out world, because in five weeks when I have my final follow-up and my incision is healed, the Martin girls are going to party like we're living in a Katy Perry song.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Snot and Gratitude

This is about all I can give you this week:

Baby Sister is coming this Monday, March 24, whether she's ready or not.  As for the rest of us, we have been effectively passing around some kind of bug for about a month now.  As a result, what should be a relaxing spring break before our surgery date has been filled with doctor's visits, pharmacy runs, and a lot of snot-wiping.  My biggest concern is getting Lucy to a non-gummy stage, both for her own comfort in this coming topsy-turvy week and so there won't be any issue with her meeting her baby sister on Monday afternoon.

Cartoons can really not convey just how huge I feel.  I've been told I carry small, that I don't look pregnant from the back, that I look great, but in reality it feels like I'm 85% baby and 15% vital organs.  Will's offered some verbal gems as I move around; as I struggled to get up off the couch, he vaguely asked, "do you need a hand?...a crane...?...jaws of life?"  And as I worked on turning over in bed: "Are you okay?  Only it sort of feels like the ISS docking."  I don't blame him for these comments; at least they make me laugh (a few seconds later, when what he's said has sunken in).

But we're ready.  I can't wait to meet our newest family member and bring her home and start this whole beautiful process over again.  I am thankful for an intensely supportive family and caring friends.  I am also thankful that we are merely buggy and not truly wanting for anything; I think of women across the world who are facing their pregnancies with so many more uncertainties and indignities than I am, and I know I am blessed beyond measure.

Who knows what or when my first post will be after next week.  Thanks for following along!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014


We are three weeks out.  We are THREE WEEKS OUT.  In three weeks I will have a day-old infant.  Unless she comes early, which I have tried discussing with her, but she seems fairly comfortable where she is.  I've packed on three pounds in the last two weeks and have moved into rotating through the same three shirts since even my other pregnancy clothes are a tight fit.

On the first go-round, I was so much more intensely aware of my daily habits.  I ditched my trusty cancer-inducing Nalgene for a metal water bottle (which I hated), avoided all lunch meats and soft cheeses, ate zero raw batter while baking, and made sure I walked every day even when I wasn't catching the bus or going across campus.  This time, I can't think of a time I've baked that I haven't licked the spoon, and when Welly finally started whining at me when it was clear I wasn't getting ready to take him for a walk, I looked him in the eye and said, "it's cold."  

Ah well.  If Lucy ends up with a Nobel and Stormageddon ends up in a penitentiary, at least I know it was because of raw eggs and not society/video games/the government/climate change.  Or is that too many independent variables?  Grad school was a few years ago.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Asking the Question

Will saw this as I was drawing it and said, "you don't look nearly that bad."  And I said, "but that's how I feel."  

Monday, February 17, 2014

No Cause for Alarm

35 weeks, and boy am I feeling every bit of it!  My weekly progress emails gleefully remind me I should be gaining a pound a week at this point, and it's truly amazing how fast my body can take on new changes.  Stormageddon has only recently vacated my right ribcage in favor of a more central position behind my navel, and just today I realized I was having trouble getting my rings back on my finger.  All this comes with an increasingly impressive amount of discomfort.  I don't always notice the sounds or faces I'm making while trying to roll over like a beached whale, but Will does.  Lucy, too, has incorporated several suspect phrases into her vocabulary, including, "oh goodness," "wowee," and "oh, so heavy."

And speaking of Lucy, just one week ago she turned TWO.  As I think ahead to the big changes coming as we prepare to start all over again, I can also reflect back on the incredible way children learn and grow.  They see and hear everything, and everything and everyone is important.  Nothing is below consideration or above attempt.  

Over the past few years, I've often found that a phrase or two from the Avett Brothers filters out of their substantial body of work to latch itself onto my life for a while.  Right now, that phrase is, "nothing short of thankful."  

Thursday, January 16, 2014


We finally got our hands on the third season of the Muppet Show for Lucy, and one of the first episodes featured this little number with Fozzie Bear and Rowlf: 

Fozzie comes onstage carrying a fish, and Rowlf asks, "why are you carrying a fish?"  To which Fozzie replies, "just for the halibut."

Well, this one-liner struck a chord in our household, and we decided to name Lucy's baby sister Halibut, so that whenever we do something for her, we can say it was, "just for the Halibut."  

Unfortunately, it's been taking me a while to remember this.
Just kidding, we're not naming our daughter Halibut.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

What Did You Do Today?

One of the most wonderful things I am experiencing right now is seeing Lucy start to pretend.  And not just mimicry, either--- we gave her a baby doll for Christmas and she gives her juice first thing in the morning and puts her down for naps and bedtimes, just like herself.  But clearly we have never ridden zebras, until today. Imaginary play was a huge part of my childhood, and being fairly well-read on social development literature for my degrees makes me even happier to see her start to get creative with the world around her.  The best part is that because she has a pretty good grasp on communication, she can tell us what she's thinking--- she told me today that the dust motes in the sunlight were fireflies.  Girl, we are going to have some good times.

In other news, Baby II (nicknamed "Cinderella" by my mother-in-law and "Stormageddon" by my sister-in-law) is showing good progress.  The doctors think she'll be small like Lucy was, but everything looks normal in the ultrasounds and all our tests and various milestones have been given a clean slate.  Yesterday we had a third ultrasound, and they threw in some of those creepy 3D pictures just for kicks, and from what we can see, she looks like a combination of her older sister and a wrinkly potato.  So overall, there's not a whole lot more we could ask for.