THE MISS Q

Morning cups at Crema.

Artisan coffee shops just find me, I swear it. We stopped off here for a pre-brunch sip. As we stood in line, the gentleman in front of us (about 30 years old), gives his name for the ordered placed.

"Wells," he says clearly.

Fitz and I turn to stare at one another in shock. Did we hear that right? Whaaaat?????

We cleared our throats, tapped his shoulder, and asked for clarification- last name? First?

His first name, shared with his grandpa. He had only ever met one other Wells before. DAMN.

And for a nice dollop of astounding coincidence? This guy was wearing something (I can’t disclose exactly what) that is a direct connection to the name we have on reserve for a someday-Baby 2. The universal symbol for that name.

Made me smile. Gave me a cool little shiver of WOW.

This world can be so weird and awesome with its signs and directions.

Happy Blogiversary, TheMissQ!

Has it really been a year? Already?

A full 12 months since deciding enough was ENOUGH and that I was ready to stop thinking and start doing?


It all began with a chip on my shoulder and this post. I was a little worn out, definitely sleep-deprived (re: newborn; nursing, new house), and excited. Excited to jump back into my absolute favorite thing in the entire world: writing. 2013 was dubbed the year of big dreams, and that includes a memoir, short essays (this is new!), and a children’s series. So I just keep writing and writing and writing. It is hard. It is also awesome.

And there is a lot of growing and living going on, too.

I mean, just look at how bitty my little boy used to be! I’ve bid buh-bye to the baby days, and am now constantly trying to find my footing with these toddler adventures. 

Amused by the bizarre, I’ve written a whole lot about my Strange-but-true Tuesdays. Because the weekends can be a busy, jumbling mess, I’ve taken to summations (and fragments!) in the form of Friday, Quicklys. I’m constantly running to feed the trifecta of mind-body-soul, and even though I can be very slow, there is no greater rush than the wind whipping through my ponytail. Fashion and food are pure fun + joy. And wine…thank you for being there in good times and bad

My little family spent time doing what we love most: traveling all over the place. 

And Q, my distinct middle initial, has popped up here and there. 

But after 12 months of posts, re-blogs, ramblings, and such, I’m delighted to see that love still reigns supreme on this blog. That’s what all of this really boils down to. And I got love for ya’ll, I do. Thank you for reading, sharing, and just being awesome all around.

So cheers to one year, and cheers to many more. 

Visited my girlfriend and her brand new baby girl, Whitney. As expected, they are both awesome and perfect.

👑💅🎀

Visited my girlfriend and her brand new baby girl, Whitney. As expected, they are both awesome and perfect.

👑💅🎀

On Not Knowing

Fact: We did not know the gender of our baby until the moment he arrived. 

In retrospect, I am so glad that we did this! It made for an awesome, curiousity-filled pregnancy, and a birth experience heightened by the grandest reveal in the history of surprises. 

(This is right where I should insert a disclaimer that I most definitely had to be convinced to do this- I am detail oriented in the most laughable sense and research/planning/prepping is the name of my game. BUT…as my pregnancy moved right along, Fitz told me that he would prefer to keep the gender a surprise and over time, this sort of grew on me. By the time I was 20 weeks (re: anatomy scan, when most parents-to-be learn the gender), I thought, “Well, this pregnancy is halfway done. I could easily wait out another 20 weeks.”)

It should be noted that this is the quickest way to piss off your friends and family…who will accuse you of knowing and not telling (not true, we really had no idea), who will get mad when you don’t give a clear answer on if you want a boy or girl, OR will try to ‘catch’ you saying something revealing- apparently one time I said “She seems to move around quite a bit in the morning” at my baby shower and people thought that was a Freudian slip. Annoyances aside, many people found this incredibly fun and entertaining. “People just don’t do that anymore!” was a phrase we heard a lot. True, I received a lot of yellow and green (gender neutral) gifts, and a lot of ducks, frogs, and giraffes (apparently gender neutral animals?!)…but most came with gift receipts. :) That was really no big deal. Besides, I really like giraffes.

I’ll just never forget that day of finding out. The day of meeting my son, my little Wells, and finally finishing the mystery book on who this sweet baby was. Every kick, twist, and turn in belly was him, all along. Hearing the nurse shout happily, “It’s a BOY!” and being genuinely dazed with bliss. It was euphoric and surreal. It was fun and it was crazy. Whenever we have another baby, we plan to do the exact same thing (sorry family, sorry friends). 

So I was secretly elated to read that William and Kate went the ‘not knowing’ route. So cool, so very very cool.

Welcome to the world, sweet prince. What a lovely, amazing surprise you are. 

The Name Game

Oh North West…I don’t even have words.

Well, I sort of do.

On Twitter I wrote that this name sounds about right given that the parents are both raging narcissists. And I stand by that comment because Kim Kardashian and Kanye West have crafted lucrative careers for themselves by flaunting their most famous assets- an ass that defies logic and a mouth that won’t shut up. 

But who am I to judge? When it comes to naming a kid, the pressure to handpick a moniker is overwhelming. Your mind races with the pressure to select the ‘perfect’ name that will please absolutely everybody, transition well over time, and above all else, prove to be valuable to your child, not a source of embarrassment. 

What sounds good with our last name?
Does the name have special meaning?
Should we consider a family name?
Is this name an easy target for childhood teasing?
What are potential nicknames?
How would the name look written on a resume? 

What adjectives does this name conjure up? Does it sound strong, noble?Does the name have a place in pop culture?
(my mother-in-law shares a name with a famous cast member of Baywatch, no joke)

There were a lot of reasons why Wellington (“Wells”) became our son’s name. When Fitz and I first started dating, we spent a lot of time on Wells Street in Old Town…art fairs, street festivals, cheering on our alma maters at sports bars, enjoying family dinners at O’Brien’s and Topo Gigio, etc. I had a ton of great memories associated with the name ‘Wells,’ and the most important one being that it marked the beginning of me + Fitz…a place in time we can point to and say, “See? Right there, down that street? That’s where we fell in love and this whole life began.”

There were some mixed reviews when we announced our son’s name. Our parents quickly pointed out that kids might call him Beef Wellington (because you know, 6-year-olds totally know what Beef Wellington is). Strangers looked puzzled when we disclosed, that no, it was not a family name, just a name we liked. And my personal favorite: people couldn’t believe we would give our son such a long name because he will hate when he has to fill out forms that only have a small number of boxes to print his name (yes, this actually happened). 

But the initial shock wore off and life went back to normal. We’ve had so many people exclaim how much they like the name and what it means to us. Fitz’s dad even suggested that ‘the Duke’ (as in Duke of Wellington) sounds like a damn cool nickname. 

And at the end of the day…all of these reactions, good or bad, really mean nothing. Because when you have a child, you bestow a name that you love with your whole heart. No one person’s opinion can change that or take it away.

So as a lover of unique names, when I consider little Miss North West, I try to remember that this name was given out of love (and hopefully not a calculated PR push).

And truthfully, I think Nori is a sweet little nickname (it’s true, I do).

GPOY*: That feeling you get when you have a truckload of delicious groceries, your baby is laughing to himself, and that awesome Styx song comes on the radio.

(*taken while parked…ain’t nobody got time for selfies while driving)

GPOY*: That feeling you get when you have a truckload of delicious groceries, your baby is laughing to himself, and that awesome Styx song comes on the radio.

(*taken while parked…ain’t nobody got time for selfies while driving)

Friday, Quickly
  • Wells demanding blueberries and ginger cookies
  • Babysitting (#cray)
  • Miles of fresh air courtesy of neighborhood strolls
  • Toggle coats
  • Looking like one helluva hot mess as I pass the most well-coiffed gay man and his three well-coiffed dogs
  • Malted Milk Balls
  • Me, giving up on dinner
  • Fitz, showing up with sushi
  • Blondie Bars
  • Trash talking + nerves for NCAA games tonight (FGCU!)
  • Teething, Part III (#grumpy)
  • Lime green screen of our tv (#seenworse)
  • New dresses for big events
  • Family photo prep for an early morning shoot

He hated every bit of it.

Thank goodness for lightening-quick moves and gentle snips! The stylist finished in 60 seconds flat (#thanksgurl), and we were out the door.

In one minute he went from little baby to little boy. And although he was not pleased to be sitting in a mini-police car and wearing a cape, the result of this little dude’s first haircut was, and is, pure perfection.

Things Are Looking Up, My Hair Still Looks Hideous

Thanks for the very kind well-wishes…I’m feeling better!

I am still looking extremely rough around the edges (bedraggled hair, bags under eyes, no makeup, nose rubbed raw from Kleenex) but I can deal with that for now. Baby steps, and all that.

I took comfort in savoring some soup with dashes of Frank’s Red Hot Sauce (cleared my sinuses- booyah). When Wells slept, I slept. And Theo slept huddled against my legs. A quick trip to the grocery store was had for comfort foods (citrus, Everything bagels, tofu, crackers, coffee ice cream). Around 4:15pm, when Wells woke from his afternoon nap, Fitz  was able to wrangle him for an hour while I rested (words cannot describe how glorious this felt- TO REST!!!). We ordered takeout for dinner.

Things are good

Can I just say that I am supremely grateful for kindness? When you’re feeling sick, you just feel so vulnerable and weak. It’s a struggle to keep yourself upright, let alone a care for a child. So it was pretty great to have support from all spectrums-

  • my friend/cousin (frousin?) Holly, who gave sound medicine/nursing advice
  • my sister, who offered consistent comedic relief
  • my fellow Tumblrs, who sent in all kinds of high fives electronically
  • my dog, who just seems to know when I am not feeling like myself
  • my mom, who sent messages via Words with Friends (I am still winning- YEAH)
  • my dad, who is in Florida right now, but wished he could swing by to help out
  • my husband, who did nothing but offer up ways to make life easier

Tomorrow, I’m hoping the upswing continues. 

To health & kindess! 

All Things Are Still

I’m drinking some night-time medicinal concoction, laying on the floor of my studio, and cranking away at various written things. Kind of like this:

I am still sniffling but optimism is gaining. Face washed, teeth unbrushed. Porch light on. At once…all things are still.

A 1-year-old sleeps upstairs, splayed out like a starfish. He is still a culinary wizard; waving a plastic spatula around as a tiny scepter as he toddles across the floor. He is like a miniature, grumpy old man, grunting and shrieking during meals demanding this, that, or MORE CHEESE. 

A husband catches up on one of the five European soccer matches he has on DVR. “I have a meeting tomorrow at 10am,” he says. "In Nebraska." A black-and-white dog snores while nuzzled against his legs. 

The vet is polite on the phone. Candid, funny. He cares so much it’s refreshing.

Wonder is out and about, with snowflakes swirling and twirling. Odd to witness but I am secretly glad winter is lingering.

A kind text reinforces that thank-you notes are overrated and bad for the environment.

A sister continues to be loved and inspired, letting her hopes run wildly brilliant on an unorthodox piece of real estate.

I see and I seek, both of what I know and what I hope to know someday.

Energy continues to flow, we breathe in and out. 

All things are still.

*good night, big dreams*